Book Review

Review: Volition by Lily Paradis

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You know that feeling in the pit of your stomach that stays with you, then tears you apart slowly at first, and all at once shreds every fiber of your being?

It’s because you’re contradicting the universe.

Everything lines up so perfectly that you couldn’t have imagined it to work out better, but then you have to go and do everything humanly possible to ruin it because you can’t stand to have it go right?

That’s what I did.

I did it because there’s a darkness that surrounds me, and I think I want it there.

My name is Tate McKenna, and my soul is blacker than my heart.


I loved Lily Paradis’s debut novel Ignite (review of which can be found here!) and I knew, I knew that I would love the rest of her novels as well. So, when she released the blurb for Volition, I knew it was another book, I had to get. And luckily, I was able to get a signed copy of it, even if I had to wait almost 2 months for it 😛

“Normally, I’m fickle. I’m so very, very fickle, and I tire of people too quickly. The ease with which I dismiss them should frighten me, but it doesn’t. I’m only vaguely alarmed, and even that’s a mild response.”

I usually don’t read Foreword at the start of a book. I don’t like to go in with preconcieved notions of what the plot or even the characters would be like. But the fact that Lily started off her note with – “I hate writing love triangles.” Now thats grabbed my attention. I hate reading about love triangles as well. Something about the fickleness of the character (male/female) just irritates me.

So it was a with trepidation that I actually went forward to read this one. And it took me only a few pages to realize that this isn’t a love triangle, this is a struggle to understand your life, your path but most of all, to understand yourself.

Tate isn’t a character that you are supposed to like. I don’t think even Lily mean her to be liked. What Tate is the culmination of everything dark that lives inside us. She is literally the antagonist of everything that is good to her. She is irritating, she is indecisive and she is the most pessimistic female you could ever find and because of what? Love. Love, not in the barest of sense, but in sens of soul mates.

Tate believes that you get only one chance at having soul mates. And she believes that she met hers. And Jesse, her soul mate, has broken her over and over again. No, they weren’t technically together, but they were supposed to be (apparently!). Now, I don’t say that I understand the nuances of understanding the concept of soul mates. I don’t. I have never believed in them and I think I never will.

And that’s why me getting sucked into this story is a remarkable achievement on the author’s part. Because for the time I was engrossed in Tate’s world, I believed. I believed in soul mates. I believed in the one who was meant for you.

“Hayden gets a response I am growing used to. He’s impeccable. Everyone he meets is awed by him because he is regal in a way that isn’t normal anymore. He’s otherworldly. He’s too charming. He volatile because he’s exactly what every other in the world is not.

He scares the living daylights out of me.

I think I like it.

I know I like it.”

Now, Tate’s notions of soul mates are challenged when she meets Hayden Rockefeller. Now, Hayden seems to be the anti – thesis of Tate. Where she is dark, he seems to be the light. Hayden is a gentlemen and has the patience of Job. He has taken everything Tate throws (and Tate does some very stupid things) and still stuck by her. So yes, Lily gave me another perfect Fictional Boyfriend for me to dream about at night! 😉

But what makes him perfect wasn’t his patience or his faith in Tate, but the fact he had his darkness and yet made a point of not letting that darkness rule his life. (I am gonna have a little chat with him on how he managed that!).

“When you were dark and twisty inside, you learned to recognize those qualities in others. You came together like magnets, because you couldn’t help it.”

When you read a book, a good book, you start to identify with the characters. You start seeing parts of yourself, in characters that you read about. When I completed Volition, All I could keep thinking was “Tate is me. I am Tate.” 

The darkness that is seen in her soul is the darkness I have in mine. While my screw ups have nothing to do with love (yes, they may have had a side effect on my notion of love), it was the same darkness. It felt like Lily had reached into my mind, taken every bad thought, every bad thing that happened to me and put into words for everyone to read.

This book is darker and a lot more realistic because of it. While, I had expected really good things (read: great books!) from Lily, this wasn’t what I expected of her second novel. She called it her purging in the foreword and I can see why it might be. Because it was purging for me to read about it. So, i am going take Catherine’s (Tate’s best friend) advice and so should you.

“Be with someone who is going to ruin your lipstick, not your mascara. So suck it up, dry your tears and say yes to the rest of your life.”


4.5 / 5 Stars


It isn’t book for the fainthearted. This book will reach inside and rip your heart out, but at the end, you will be happy about it.


4 thoughts on “Review: Volition by Lily Paradis”

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