Book Review: Solstice by P.J. Hoover
By: P.J. Hoover
Author Info: Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre Type: Dystopia, Mythology
Publication Date: June 18th 2013
Pages: 384 pages
Source: Solstice Blog Tour
Piper's world is dying.
Each day brings hotter temperatures and heat bubbles that threaten to destroy the earth. Amid this global heating crisis, Piper lives under the oppressive rule of her mother, who suffocates her even more than the weather does. Everything changes on her eighteenth birthday, when her mother is called away on a mysterious errand and Piper seizes her first opportunity for freedom.
Piper discovers a universe she never knew existed—a sphere of gods and monsters—and realizes that her world is not the only one in crisis. While gods battle for control of the Underworld, Piper’s life spirals out of control as she struggles to find the answer to the secret that has been kept from her since birth.
An imaginative melding of mythology and dystopia, Solstice is the first YA novel by talented newcomer P. J. Hoover.
Summary and image from Goodreads.
WHY I WANTED TO READ THE BOOK:
When I first read the book's description for Solstice I got pretty excited about the premise of it, especially since I'm a fan of all things Mythological and love a great Dystopian setting. What made Solstice such a great read was the way P.J. Hoover used the extreme conditions of global warming as the books setting, and combined it with a fun and inventive new twist to a Greek myth. The bonus-we get to visit Hades and meet some unique characters and creatures pulled straight out of Greek Myth. Solstice was a fun read and perfect for Summertime enjoyment.
SETTING AND SUMMARY:
Piper’s world is one of unending heat waves, vapor cooling sprays, and protective domes. Her only concerns have been how to deal with the never ending heat waves and her very oppressive mother. But suddenly on Piper's eighteenth birthday everything starts to change. A reprieve from her mother is granted when she leaves on a mysterious errand leaving Piper to experience freedom for the first time. When Piper receives a odd ceramic jar as a birthday gift, her world suddenly opens up to one she never knew existed. A strange world filled with gods and monsters at war, and somehow Piper is caught in the middle of it all.
Piper's character goes from being shy and a bit of a pushover, to one of independence and personal strength. Dominated by her overprotective mother, Piper seeks to gain a sense of freedom as she struggles to uncover the secret behind her true identity. Piper discovers what freedom, rebellion and romance feels like for the first time. How she makes her choices and the end results of those choices is what made Piper's character so interesting.
The Mother in Solstice is very controlling over Piper, and you will probably not like her much, I know I didn't. It wasn’t until later on when Piper discovers the secret behind her identity, and therefore who her mother really is, that her character became less frustrating.
Shayne is the mysterious and handsome new guy in class whose very interested in Piper. There’s this immediate connection between the two of them, and Piper is not sure why.
Then there's Reese whose daring and charismatic personality becomes a dangerous temptation for Piper. Both are keeping a secret from Piper and both become rivals for her affections.
SWOON LEVEL: Crush.
THE ROMANCE: There is a fascinating romance in Solstice as Shayne and Reese vie for the affections of Piper.
THE SWOON QUOTE:
“My name is Shayne.” He gives me the cutest little smile like he’s got a secret he’s dying to tell me. Like we’re co-conspirators in a plot to take over the world. And I believe for a second we are.”
WHAT I LIKED:
I loved the fabulous adventure that P.J. Hoover took us on, as we followed Piper down into the underworld. There was plenty of details and descriptions to make you feel as if you were really there.
WHAT I DIDN’T CARE FOR:
There were mainly two things that bothered me during the first part of the book: Piper's character being a bit of a pushover, and her controlling mother. Once I knew for sure the true identity of Piper and her mother, it became obvious why these two were portrayed this way in the beginning of the book.
I enjoyed reading Solstice, and I liked the different and unique take P.J. Hoover used to combine elements of Dystopia with Mythology. It was a great book to escape to, and I'm looking forward to reading more from P.J. Hoover.
MY RATING: 4 Stars. I really liked it.