Review: Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Starry Nights
Title: Starry Nights
Author: Daisy Whitney
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Date of Publication: September 3, 2013

Seventeen-year-old Julien is a romantic—he loves spending his free time at the museum poring over the great works of the Impressionists. But one night, a peach falls out of a Cezanne, Degas ballerinas dance across the floor, and Julien is not hallucinating.

The art is reacting to a curse that trapped a beautiful girl, Clio, in a painting forever. Julien has a chance to free Clio and he can't help but fall in love with her. But love is a curse in its own right. And soon paintings begin to bleed and disappear. Together Julien and Clio must save the world's greatest art . . . at the expense of the greatest love they've ever known.

Like a master painter herself, Daisy Whitney brings inordinate talent and ingenuity to this romantic, suspenseful, and sophisticated new novel. A beautifully decorated package makes it a must-own in print.
Purchase from Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository


My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Thank you to Daisy Whitney for the review copy! Still, this in no way affected my views of the novel. And since I'm in a list-y mood, lists all the way!

Seven Reasons Why I Love Julien/Seven Proofs that Julien is Too Good to Be True

1. His name is JULIEN. The French counterpart of my favorite guy name JULIAN. How can I not love him? That is impossible. Names are a big thing for me so with just this bit, my eyes turned into hearts.

2. He's French. Did you know that I named my Kindle Adrien after a French guy? #yesiamashallowperson

3. He's cool. He has impeccable taste in music. #hipster He can DJ. He draws!

4. He's fun. The stuff he and his best friend Simon did were gut-achingly funny. Hahaha! This is a guy who knows how to have fun. He's spontaneous and he's game!

5. He's sweet. To the people he tours around the museum, to his mom, to the paintings that come to life, to Emmanuelle, to Clio. He's kind but he's no pushover. He tiptoes on the line of being a safe guy and an appealing dangerous one (with his curiosity and courage). <3

6. He's sensitive. Like no other. It feels like he's too good to be true because how can a guy understand a girl (and people in general) so much?

7. He's passionate. With everything and anything he sets his mind on. Sure, he kinda fails on literature and history because he's lazy but when he puts in effort, he gets good grades. And his passion for art and paintings is just swoonworthy. I love a guy who's passionate, who gives it all for what he wants. Passion is a turn-on~

Seven Reasons Why I Love STARRY NIGHTS

1. Julien. See previous list. *wink* And it's in his point-of-view and I dig all the male voices in YA!

2. Paris. While I haven't been to Paris and I'm not as obsessed with it, I appreciate the change in setting in Starry Nights. Most novels I read are set in America so when authors transport the story to somewhere else, I gobble them up. I read several reviews on Goodreads that Paris didn't seem authentic in here because there were not much descriptions and atmosphere set-up of Paris. In retrospect, I understand their point but while I was reading it, I didn't feel that way. Once again, this might be because of my lack of knowledge about Paris. So if you're a big fan of Paris, you might find an issue with that aspect.

3. Art. Honestly, I don't know a thing with paintings. I was mostly asleep during art class back in high school. (The lights were always off! Please don't judge me.) And I wasn't able to take art appreciation classes in college. So I'm thankful for Starry Nights and Daisy Whitney for immersing me into the paintings mentioned in here. Aside from looking at the pictures of the painting in the ARC, I searched them over the Internet and fell into a painting wormhole. Let's just say I can now totally relate when I watch White Collar and they spout off paintings. Hee.

4. Concept. The premise of paintings coming to life? I LOVE IT. I know, it's like Night at the Museum and the author actually describes the novel as something like it. I enjoyed that movie so I had a feeling that I'll come out satisfied with this novel too. And I did!

5. Plot. I'm putting plot as a different point because what goes down in the novel is different from its set-up. So, the paintings come to life. But then, what happens next? So what? What are the ramifications? Even though Starry Nights is a very short and quick read, we weren't robbed of conflicts and mysteries and twists. Right from the start, we get lots of questions in which we beg for answers. Why do the paintings come to life? Who is this girl? Why is she special? What's the curse? Why is there a curse? So many questions and Daisy Whitney unveils the answer to each satisfyingly. Put an obstacle here, a twist there, a mission in here, espionage there, OH MY.

6. Romance. Granted, sure, it was insta-love. But I'm willing to suspend my hate for insta-love for this novel. *the world goes in shock* When Julien just falls in love with the girl from the painting, Clio, I scoffed. WHY? Sure, she's beautiful, ethereal, ephemeral, sublime. But she's from a painting!!! Then they get to know each other, they bond, they go inside paintings and I'm a goner. Julien swept me and Clio off our feet. Doesn't help that Daisy really knows how to write sweet lines and dialogue that will make your legs go weak and your cheeks to blush. Maybe on other books or if it's by other authors, these lines will seem cheesy and sappy. But but, here's an example!
"She was a revolution and she staged a coup d'etat in my heart."
Stop it, Julien! *bats eyelashes* Or maybe I'm such a girl. Whatever. Most reviews I read had issues with the ending because they think it wasn't realistic. <spoiler> Sure, right at the end, deus ex machina was employed, with a swift little trick which made them free to be together. I love bittersweet endings and I love HEAs too. And while I get where they were coming from, I never felt cheated by the happy ending. I guess it all boils down to me being a sucker for happy endings. I guess some people would just prefer if the resolution didn't happen so fast.</spoiler>

7. Daisy Whitney's writing! I told Daisy this a lot of times but next to David Levithan, I think she's my next favorite author. Her way with words is just ~lovely~.

Special mention to Simon. Love him! I didn't want to make him as the eighth reason because it'll make me crazy to have a list with seven points and another one with eight points. Haha!

Starry Nights is a disarmingly enchanting and entrancing tale of the impossible being possible through love. Spellbindingly sweet and fascinating, Daisy Whitney has written yet another magnetic novel with mesmerizing characters and an enthralling concept.

About Daisy Whitney

By day, Daisy Whitney is a reporter and ghostwriter. At night, she writes novels for teens and is the author of THE MOCKINGBIRDS and its sequel THE RIVALS (Little, Brown). Her third novel WHEN YOU WERE HERE releases in June 2013 (Little, Brown), and her fourth novel STARRY NIGHTS (Bloomsbury) hits shelves in September 2013. When Daisy's not inventing fictional high school worlds, she can be found somewhere north of San Francisco walking her adorable dog, watching online TV with her fabulous husband or playing with her fantastic kids.  A graduate of Brown University, she believes in shoes, chocolate chip cookies and karma.


  1. wait.. this isn't pure contemporary?…. I thought it was then I read the whole paintings bleeding to life and Julien falling in love with a girl in a painting?… ehh.. to be honest you had be excited, especially with the reasons why you loved Julien.. but now I'm not sure if this is something I'll enjoy.

    great review though,
    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

    1. Yes, it's a paranormal/supernatural novel and not a pure contemporary. Starry Nights got a lot of middling or negative reviews on Goodreads but well, reading is subjective! I highly enjoyed it but it isn't for everyone. Thanks for dropping by though, Juhina! :DD

  2. I've read a few books by Daisy Whitney and enjoyed them. I'm always a tad bit iffy on mixing paranormal with contemporary but it sounds like it was done well in this book. Sounds like I should check it out.

    1. I'm not that into paranormal/supernatural as well but I guess I'm a sucker for any kind of romance. I do hope you get to check it out sooner, Vivien. Thanks for stopping by!


Comment away!

By the way, this is an awards-free blog. I appreciate it though, really. :D

site design by designer blogs