Published: 30th March, 2015
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Age: Young Adult
In case you’re wondering, this is not a love story.
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.
Content warning: bullying; mental health issues;
What I liked: Tori was a complex, and sometimes hard to understand and unlikable character. She’s bitter, pessimistic, and tends to throw out her “I’m better than the” attitude to the other students at her school. In fewer words, she’s realistic. People like this exist out there, and Tori is a great example of one of them. Does she make some bad choices? Yes, but everyone does. Tori also shows that not every person you read about is going to like reading, she even says that she hates books. Can I blame her? No because that gives her an interesting difference from a lot of other female characters I’ve read because they tend to read as a hobby, but Tori would rather spend her time blogging instead and I’m really okay with that. It makes her different. Aside from her, the other characters weren’t as interesting for the most part, although the actual people behind Solitaire and its pranks (and their reasons) were a bit shocking and those reasons were a little weird. There also wasn’t romance in the book, a nice change for a Young Adult Contemporary since there always seems to be some in it, and it wouldn’t have made sense in the story for it to be there.
What I didn’t like: This book was a little hard to bet into in the beginning. It took a while to connect with Tori and understand her enough to understand her motivation and the way she acted. I mean, she’s very bitter and pessimistic, but once I understood that about her, I found it much easier to understand her. The thing I didn’t get though, was the hacking of the school. I used to know someone who was friends with the techs at one of my schools and it was a conversation one time about if someone would ever be able to hack the school mainframe but from what I understood, its not. Also, the only way a keyboard and/or mouse would be rendered unusable on a computer is if the computer was showing the screen of another computer instead of its own. So the whole hacking part seemed a little off to me, but for the most part I overlooked it.
Overall Review: Although I was really excited to read this book, I do feel it was a bit over-hyped. Don’t get me wrong, I liked it, but it wasn’t amazing. It was a little slow to me, and not all of it made sense, but it was a good read.
Recommend?: Tentatively, because it seems like a book that you’ll either like, or dislike for the most part. But I enjoyed it so I say give it a shot!
My Rating: 3.7/5
About the Author
Alice Oseman was born in 1994 in Kent, England. She is studying English at Durham University, probably due to the expectation of society, but mostly spends her time obsessing over fictional characters, drawing really dumb comics, and complaining about things on her Tumblr, chronicintrovert.tumblr.com. Hopefully, she’ll avoid having to get a real job for the rest of her life.