I LOVED Solitaire. The book is about “chronic pessimist” Tori Spring navigating through school like a normal teen these days with tumblr and pranks Ferris Bueller could only dream to pull off.
The characterization is phenomenal. Tori Spring is depressed and aloof, but I was never once annoyed by her. I felt like she was such a real person, that I couldn’t feel that she was whiny or complained too much. On the contrary, Alice Oseman made me care so much for Tori that I rooted for her. I wanted her to get better, I stuck with her through the hard times. I loved her.
What’s more, I loved Michael Holden. (Funny that his last name is Holden when the book is being called a contemporary Catcher in the Rye. Cute) I loved Nick, and Charlie. All the kids in the book had very real problems, all very relatable problems.
The realness was striking. Now, I’m not going to sit here and tell you what the book was about, you can read the summary on amazon, I’m talking about the quality of the writing here. I guess that’s what I aim to do in my reviews. The characters were so engaging, I felt less like I was reading a story, and more like I was living with them. I think that’s important.
I finished Solitaire feeling like I was leaving my friends behind. That’s how monumental I felt this book was for today’s YA readers. I think to say Alice Oseman’s young age directly correlates to how effectively she relates to her young audience is unfair. She relates to her readers because she is a good writer. She knows what she’s talking about and seems like she’s either been there with all of us, or she’s done a damn good amount of research. This book and it’s dealings with mental illness among teenagers is so truthful, I think every struggling teen should read it.
Solitaire is dripping with the “You are NOT Alone” message. I cannot stress enough how authentic this book felt.