Author: Alice Oseman
Book #: 1
Reading Level: YA
Goodreads Rating: 3.95
Published: March 30th, 2015
In case you're wondering, this is not a love story.Taschima's POV:
My name is Tori Spring. I like to sleep and I like to blog. Last year – before all that stuff with Charlie and before I had to face the harsh realities of A-Levels and university applications and the fact that one day I really will have to start talking to people – I had friends. Things were very different, I guess, but that's all over now.
Now there's Solitaire. And Michael Holden.
I don't know what Solitaire are trying to do, and I don't care about Michael Holden.
I really don't.
This incredible debut novel by outstanding young author Alice Oseman is perfect for fans of John Green, Rainbow Rowell and all unflinchingly honest writers.
**DISCLAIMER; Yes I gave this book two stars, but that doesn't mean anything. This is one of those books that is not for ME, but it is still a good book. For me it might have been an pretty fine read, but for you it might be a 4-5 star read.
"All this time, I've just been sitting around, moaning about how shit everything is, not bothering to try and make things better. I hate myself for that."What can I say about Solitaire, other than it was figuratively a roller coaster ride. I spent the first 25% of the book bored out of my mind, just passing the time wishing the plot or whatever would move a little faster, that something interesting would happen. But then interesting things did start to happen, and I thought that would save the book, certainly give it a 3 star, but after another 25% I was bored again, and so on. Down, UP, down, UP. 50% of the book was interesting and dealt with interesting thoughts and things, the other 50% was full of teen angst and melodrama and bullshit. Is the good 50% worth it? Well, you be the judge...
"My name is Victoria Spring. I think you should know that I made up a lot of stuff in my head and then get sad about it. I like to sleep and I like to blog. I am going to die someday."Victoria, or Tori as she likes to refer to herself, is a huge downer. Everybody around her knows this, her best friend knows it, and even SHE knows it. This girl has some serious issues going on all around, and to be honest she almost made me want to put the book down. She is a sad girl who is all sad and alone and emo, and judges everyone around her. She thinks people are just wasting their time, going through the social motions, and she doesn't understand this. I sympathize with her on this aspect because I have often times also believed this, but still to read such pessimistic thoughts from your main character and have nothing to justify it (in the beginning) makes it hard to want to continue to read the title (specially when she just keeps repeating herself).
"I can't think of anything to say because that is what my answer would be, really. Nothing. I am a vacuum. I am void. I am nothing."People try to be friends with Tori, but she just pushes them away. She is flawed, she is a teenager who doesn't know any better and is dealing with some heavy issues at home. At one point things are revealed about her home life that help shine some light into why Tori is the way she is, this helped me sympathize with her because if I had gone through what she went through I may be a bit broken inside as well. I understand her stance and her character, but that doesn't mean I have to love her.
One aspect I really enjoyed about Solitaire was how its characters were never stereotypical. They all have so many layers to them, it is a little baffling.
"It's weird how you see someone who smiles all the time and you assume that they are happy all the time. It's weird how someone is nice to you and you assume that they're a wholly "good person." I did not think Michael would be so serious about something, or so angry."All the characters have something. Michael is trying to become Tori's friend, he really really tries. He is weird and doesn't fit inside a box. He is sporty, but is not that much into sports as a whole. You don't know if he is straight, or gay, or bi. He doesn't put much value to labels. He has a lot of interests, he is hyperactive, weird, some might say insane. I liked him because of this, he has many facets to his personality, he is authentic, and perfectly flawed. Even the other characters, like Becky (who is Tori's best friend) and Lucas (who is Tori's old best friend) are like that. You may want to say something particular about any of them, but then they turn around and prove you wrong.
The whole "Solitaire" situation (Solitaire is this online blog that does pranks at Tori's school) gave the book a much needed distraction from Tori's ongoing self deprecating state of mind. While the mystery of "who created Solitaire?" is very easy to figure out, the reasoning behind creating Solitaire is one that makes you appreciate the book more and all its characters.
Solitaire is like that indie teenage story. It kind of reminds me of The Perks of Being a Wallflower, only way more melodramatic. Tori often finds herself thinking deep thoughts about human nature, societal rules, suicide and depression. Solitaire was very well written (even though it has one of the longest run on sentences I've ever read--which I liked), has a nice eclectic cast of characters, and it is an "edgy" read. Maybe Solitaire is not my cup of tea, but that doesn't mean it can't be yours.
"As far as I am concerned, I came out of the womb spouting cynicism and wishing for rain."