by Stephanie Parent
Kindle Edition, 325 pages
Published: August 1st 2012
*Ecopy provided by Author for an honest review.
Synopsis via Goodreads:
Synopsis via Goodreads:
Julia Cape: A dedicated classical piano student just trying to get through her last semester of high school while waiting to hear from music conservatories.
Reed MacAllister: A slacker more likely to be found by the stoners’ tree than in class.
Julia and Reed might have graduated high school without ever speaking to each other…until, during a class discussion of Romeo and Juliet, Julia scoffs at the play’s theme of love at first sight, and Reed responds by arguing that feelings don’t always have to make sense. Julia tries to shake off Reed’s comment and forget about this boy who hangs with the stoner crowd—and who happens to have breathtaking blue eyes—but fate seems to bring the two together again and again. After they share an impulsive, passionate kiss, neither one can deny the chemistry between them. Yet as Julia gets closer to Reed, she also finds herself drawn into his dark world of drugs and violence. Then a horrific tragedy forces Julia’s and Reed’s families even farther apart…and Julia must decide whether she’s willing to give up everything for love.
Defy the Stars is written in an edgy free-verse style that will appeal to fans of Ellen Hopkins and Lisa Schroeder; however, the writing is accessible enough to speak to non-verse fans as well. The novel’s combination of steamy romance and raw emotion will appeal to fans of Gayle Forman, Simone Elkeles, Jennifer Echols, and Tammara Webber. With a story, language and form that both pay homage to and subvert Shakespeare’s play, Defy the Stars is much more than just another Romeo and Juliet story.
My musical interest is unlimited, and any story that has music in the mix is bound to get my attention. Defy the Stars stands on its own as one of the most exhilarating, thought-provoking, and fascinating story portraying the life of a young girl coming into her own and deciphering what it truly is she wants in life.
Reed and Julia together is beautiful but somewhat dangerous. His situation is not to be taken lightly. Reed isn't a bad guy, in my opinion, its just the stuff around him that's bad. I think music is what connected the two on another level, aside from their strong chemistry.
Julia is an interesting character. I loved how playing the piano was something she decided to do on her own as oppose to being pressured into it by her parents. Though, she does seem pressured in other ways, whether its living up to their expectations of excelling, or establishing a relationship with someone they deem as respectable, focused, and up to their liking. Julia is a teen so of course her way of discerning certain things will leave you with questionable expressions, but nonetheless, her ability to rise above all else is quite remarkable.
So, what else can I say about this novel? The setting is brilliant, the plot is far from generic, the characters are relatable. Stephanie Parent offers an interesting view on what happens with teens in society, no matter their background, If you're up for a rather realistic read then this is a story for you.