REVIEW: Solitaire by Alice Oseman

I received this book for free from Harper Collins Children's Books in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

REVIEW: Solitaire by Alice OsemanSolitaire by Alice Oseman
Published by Harper Collins Children's Books on 31st July 2014
Genres: contemporary, young adult
Pages: 400
Format: ARC
Source: Harper Collins Children's Books
Buy on AmazonBuy on Hive

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.

This incredible debut novel by outstanding young author Alice Oseman is perfect for fans of John Green, Rainbow Rowell and all unflinchingly honest writers.

What can I say about Solitaire that will convey my thoughts on just how perfect it is? I’ve been eagerly anticipating reading it for months now and so I started it as soon as I opened the parcel containing it.

Solitaire tells the story of Victoria Spring, whose hobbies include sleeping, blogging and drinking diet lemonade. Tori is a pessimist and prefers her own company to spending time with others. Things used to be different: she had friends and her brother, Charlie, was okay, but now things are different. When things start happening around the school, harmless pranks which then turn into something bigger, Tori is left wondering who’s behind it – who are Solitaire, and what are they trying to achieve? – and also trying to live with her own inner struggles.

Solitaire is a gorgeous and breath-taking debut novel, which, in my opinion, rivals the likes of The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger. Seeing as though Catcher is one of my all time favourite novels, it’s no surprise that Solitaire is now also a part of that list.

Filled with fandom references and incredibly realistic to teenage life, Solitaire is a book that every teenager will relate to and a book many adults will also love because of its realism and ability to just understand life on so many levels.

One of the reasons I loved this novel so much was that I felt as if I was the person in Tori’s head. It scared me in a way because so many of my own feelings were reflected in the writing. Tori, the protagonist, gets me and that made it so special to read.

Tori is juxtaposed to Michael Holden, the male protagonist in Solitaire. Before you think it, Solitaire is by no means a love story. Solitaire is a life story, and by that I mean that Solitaire captures life perfectly – life isn’t a love story, is it? Life is so much more than meeting someone and madly falling in love with him or her. I loved that about Solitaire and it’s what sets it apart from your typical YA novel.

Written from the heart, I believe Solitaire will be one of the biggest debut novels of 2014. You certainly won’t want to miss out on reading it!


Book in a Tweet: If you’re a teenager, or have ever been a teenager, this book has been written just for you: You’re not alone.

If you liked …. you’ll love this!

 solitaireifyouliked.pngJohn Green – love The Fault in Our Stars? Mad about Looking for Alaska and Paper Towns? Solitaire easily rivals it!

 Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell – Full of fandom references that will put a big smile on your face, Solitaire deals with the same feelings as Fangirl but is possibly even better!


Lucy Powrie

Lucy Powrie is a blogger, YouTuber and author from the UK. When she's not reading, she enjoys cuddling guinea pigs and eating Oreo chocolate, but let's be real: she's mostly always reading.


  1. Reply


    21 May, 2014

    I’ve never heard of this one, but now I’m super curious. It sounds super unique and I think I need to add to my summer TBR immediately!!! I wasn’t the biggest fan of Catcher in the Rye (is Michael Holden a reference to Holden Caulfield?), but I think this girl sounds like she might be a little more relate able than Holden was. Great review… thanks for bringing it to my attention 🙂
    Michelle recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday- Friendship BooksMy Profile

  2. Reply

    Jesse Owen

    21 May, 2014

    This is the first I’ve heard of this one but it sounds brilliant! I’ll be investigating this!
    Jesse Owen recently posted…Review: Rogue (H.I.V.E #5) By Mark WaldenMy Profile

  3. Reply

    Caroline Taylor

    22 May, 2014

    Oh wow, what a glowing review, I must read this book!

  4. Reply

    Carly Jayne

    26 May, 2014

    Great review, I really want to read this one!
    Plus the cover is pretty 😉
    Carly Jayne recently posted…Splendid Series.My Profile

    • Reply

      Lucy Powrie

      26 May, 2014

      It is, isn’t it? I love the cover so much!
      I hope you enjoy it if you do read it!

  5. Reply


    30 May, 2015

    I am currently reading this book, and i do enjoy this story so far… Yeay..

  6. Reply

    Grace Osas

    21 May, 2016

    I’m surprised that people said that fans of TFIOS would like this book. I read it, thought it was overrated, but really liked this book. I just really liked the dialogue. Although, it had that one annoying cliché near the end, I found it enjoyable. However, I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone because only few would be able to understand Tori and few would be able to tolirate her! xD

  7. Reply

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    2 August, 2018

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  8. Reply

    violet zoni

    1 May, 2021

    Solitaire gives the mind something to focus on, particularly in times of low action when the opportunity to fret is high. Keeping calm by focusing on a low-risk game like Solitaire is an excellent way to diffuse any tension in your mind or body and help you enjoy your day or get to sleep better at night.

  9. Reply

    Miki Authr

    8 May, 2021

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    If you have valuable tips, tricks, ideas, or techniques to share, then you’re more than welcome to write for us and help provide others with solid articles and useful insights.
    Miki Authr recently posted…The 10 Best Black Nail Polishes to Buy in 2021My Profile

  1. Reply

    My Favourite Books of 2014 - Queen of Contemporary

    27 December, 2014

    […] Solitaire by Alice Oseman […]

  2. Reply

    Books, Books, Glorious Books! | Book Haul - Queen of Contemporary

    6 March, 2016

    […] Silence by Alice Oseman is one of my most-anticipated releases of 2016, especially as I loved Solitaire so much. I’m going to be starting it right away because I can’t wait any longer! Alice is an […]


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