Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, but no one’s ever looked past her weight to see who she really is. Since her mum’s death, Libby’s been hiding, but now she’s ready for high school.
I was to be the girl who can do anything.
Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin too – sexy, aloof and too cool for school. But Jack’s swaggering confidence is hiding a secret he must keep at all costs. Be charming. Be hilarious.
Don’t get too close to anyone.
Then Jack meets Libby. And their worlds change.
Because sometimes when you meet someone the whole universe just comes into focus.
Holding Up the Universe is a young adult book (YA) that is beautifully written by Jennifer Niven. It’s her second fiction novel published, after All the Bright Places (which is now on my list of TBR!).
Libby and Jack both have problems, Libby’s stems from when her mother suddenly died and she found the most comfort in eating and attempting to fill the void her mother left.
Jack’s came from an accident he had when he was a little boy, now he struggles to remember anyone’s face, from his parents to his girlfriend to his friends. Which as one of the most popular students in his school throws some issues his way.
Little do they know it, but the two have to be in each other’s lives because that way, they will be able to sort themselves out.
After a horrible game of ‘fat girl buckaroo,’ Jack and Libby are forced to spend more and more time together in group counselling at school.
After a few weeks of being with each other every single day the pair realise they have a connection and want to be together.
Throughout the book, Libby learns to love herself and her body as it’s what has kept her alive through everything that happened in her life. And Jack has a breakthrough, out of everyone he knows and loves he can suddenly remember a face…
I can’t say if it was what I was expecting in a book as I had no plans of reading it. I didn’t know it existed, I saw someone on the train reading it and she was completely captivated in it, the emotions I saw on her face in that 40-minute journey made me want to know what was happening, so thank you random train girl for the novel inspiration…!
There has been quite a bit of backlash on the book with reviews, but I think it has a great moral to the story which is – You are wanted.
*Disclaimer: I had trouble loving the end of this book, my version had a bonus chapter excerpt of a new book that I was not expecting, so I feel like I was robbed of the end of the book, however, I still find the ending a little deflating…*
You can buy it here: Holding Up the Universe