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Review of Blue Sun, Yellow Sky by Jamie Jo Hoang

by Candi Sary

The Rundown

Blue Sun, Yellow Sky takes readers on a journey around the world with Aubrey, a rising star in the art world who recently learned she is going blind. In six to eight weeks, her eyesight will be gone. She spontaneously decides to join Jeff, her best friend from high school, and set out on a trip around the world. It is a final feast for her eyes, and she takes in spectacular sights while touring China, India, Jordan, Isreal, Brazil and Peru. Hoang expertly brings readers into these scenes, as when she describes the Beijing night market: “Red and white striped awnings lined the street, lit by dangling, bare light bulbs attached to the tent tops. Raw poultry hung from hooks while fried and candied insects stuck out like lollipops at Disneyland.”

Aubrey is in denial over her impending blindness. She can’t quite process the immensity of what she is about to lose. The reality of her condition slowly sinks in as she experiences each foreign country, and her denial no longer protects her. She has to find a way to use her creativity to come to terms with her loss, even though her blindness will drastically affect her art. The novel is a fascinating and realistic look into the mind of an artist. “Everything in life—our thoughts, our emotions—are always fragmented. For me, art brings it all back together.” There is also a nicely crafted theme in the storyline concerning an emerging romance between Aubrey and Jeff, with all the complications that it brings to their friendship.

Hoang does a great job telling this story thoughtfully. Aubrey’s emotions certainly come into play as she feels the pain of her situation, but it is even more intriguing to read about Aubrey’s strength and creativity in facing her blindness. Blue Sun, Yellow Sky is a quiet, contemplative novel. It’s not a page-turner with a fast-paced plot. The book is gripping for its thought-provoking power. Aubrey is a strong woman who won’t let this tragic circumstance ruin her life—instead she uses it to gain a deeper insight into life and herself.

The Recommendation

Blue Sun, Yellow Sky is for readers who are moved by the power of the human spirit under difficult circumstances, and those who wish to intimately experience one character’s journey of discovery. It is for readers who appreciate depth, quality writing and detailed descriptions that make you feel like you are really there.

The Rating Reviewer Rating: 4.5 Stars

4.5 Stars (out of 5): Highly recommended. This book is a great read. It can hold its own against any traditionally published novel in its genre, and surpasses many.

The Pros & Cons

Pros: Believable, Emotional
Cons: Slow in Places

The Links

More about Blue Sun, Yellow Sky on UBR

The Reviewer

Candi Sary

Candi Sary is the author of Black Crow White Lie, a shortlist finalist in the William Faulkner William Wisdom Writing Competition and semifinalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. Sary lives in coastal Southern California with her husband and three dogs now that her kids are grown. She can often be found surfing and paddle boarding in the waters of Newport Beach.

Visit Candi Sary‘s website.

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