Book Review: All the Bright Places


Theodore Finch is fascinated by death. Every day he thinks of ways he might kill himself, but every day he also searches for—and manages to find—something to keep him here, and alive, and awake.

Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her small Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death.

When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school—six stories above the ground— it’s unclear who saves whom. Soon it’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink. . . .

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All the Bright Places has been sitting on my shelves for at least a year and although I heard great things about it I just never seemed in the right mood to read it. However, after reading a lot of fantasy this year I found myself in a contemporary mood and ended up giving this book a try. Unfortunately it did not live up to the hype.

This novel is told in the altering first person perspectives of Violet and Finch who met on the ledge of the bell tower at school. While Finch was known for being weird, Violet was a popular girl. Therefore it was easy for them to weave this story that Violet talked Finch down from the tower even though the truth was it was actually the other way around. After this shared experience Violet and Finch naturally end up romantically involved.

For Finch his focus was on staying “awake” as he calls it. Finch goes through these periods of being “asleep” where he loses track of time and can’t really do anything. I took this to mean he falls into a deep depression. Differently Violet is just focused on counting down the days until graduation so she can leave town and move one from her sister’s death. Both Violet and Finch have their issues but Finch’s obviously stems from a mental illness that his family doesn’t seem all that concerned about. Differently, Violet’s parents are very concerned about her and they have a right to be since she refused to get in a car because her sister died in a car accident.

I wanted to like the message of this novel but it was hard for me to acknowledge that when I disliked the characters so much. I found both Violet and Finch irritating and though I wanted to feel sympathetic towards them it was difficult for me to find sympathy. I just didn’t really love anything about this book. The plot was just fine, the romance wasn’t all that exciting, and though I get the message I was annoyed with how this book ended. In summary I don’t get the hype at all so this is definitely a borrow for me.


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Favorite Line:

“You are all the colors in one, at full brightness.”

Other Reviews

Katie’s Book Blog

A Book is a Girl’s Best Friend

Ashana Lian’s Fantasy Lab

‘Stars Above,’ ‘All the Bright Places,’ And More Books On My March TBR

February is quickly coming to a close, which is crazy because where is this year going, and it’s time to share my to-be-read list for next month. Check out the list below and let me know if you’ve read or plan to read any of these books.

1. Multiple Listings by Tracy McMillan


I got a digital ARC of this book and I can’t wait to read it! Tracy McMillan is a screenwriter (she wrote for Mad Men!) and this novel is somewhat based on her real life. The main character Nicki Daniels is a real estate agent who’s ex-con father just got out of jail and is looking for place to stay. But Nicki is just getting her life on track and the last thing she needs is her father messing things up. I get a filling this book will be filled with family drama and I love it.

2. All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven


I’ve hard so much about this book and it’s been sitting on my shelf for months now. I’m hoping this month will be the month I finally dive in. The novel follows Violet and Finch who meet on the ledge of a bell tower. Their friendship/relationship grows from there. Dealing with love, depression, and so much else this sounds like a great read.

3. After You by Jojo Moyes


After reading Me Before You (and crying for days!) I absolutely have to know what happens next. I loved Lou and I’m excited to know what happens to her. In this sequel, we see Lou back with her family struggling to figure out her next steps and hopefully, discovering love. I’m sure this book will make me cry just as much as the original but I’m going to read it anyway.

4. Playing Defense by Cate Cameron


I got a digital ARC copy of this book from Entangled teen and it sounds really interesting to me. Claudia has never been kissed but when she starts tutoring popular hockey player, Chris, she begins to fall for him. Honestly, I’m a sucker for the nerd gets with the popular person type of story. Haley and Nathan on One Tree Hill, anyone? This book is sure to make me swoon.

5. Stars Above by Marissa Meyer


I want this book so badly. Unfortunately I’m currently on an indefinite book buying ban but thank God for libraries. If you haven’t read the Lunar Chronicles yet definitely check it out because it’s amazing. Stars Above is a collection of short stories about the characters in the books plus a special epilogue to the last book.

6. Afterworlds by Scott Westerfield


This is another book that’s been on my shelf for months and I’m so ready to read it. This book is like two books in one. On one level we have the story of Darcy who got a book deal and moves to New York and then on another level we have the story she wrote about Lizzie. Also, I love that the main characters names are Darcy and Lizzie. Pride and Prejudice feels everywhere!

7. Prodigy by Marie Lu


I read Legend so long ago and I loved it. Now I need to know what happens next. June and Day are on the run to Vegas and there’s a new Elector in charge. June and Day have to figure out what’s right and what’s wrong as they’re forced to pick a side as a revolution begins.

8. The Haters by Jesse Andrews


I got this lovely ARC from Abrams and I’m supper excited to read it. I haven’t read Me and Earl and the Dying Girl yet but I will. Until then I really want to read this book because it sounds super good. Wes, Corey, and Ash decide to leave band camp and hit the road, leading to a music filled adventure that I’m sure I’ll love.