Review: Piper Perish by Kayla Cagan

The thickness off this book was intimidating. Until I realized that it had pictures.

Piper Perish can’t wait for her senior year in high school. She’s supposed to have the best time with her friends and boyfriend. She’s supposed to go to New York for college and escape her boring life in Texas. Until her boyfriend breaks up with her, her friend is seeming distant and she might not be able to go to high school. Not to mention she’s in love with three different guys and her sister is back to being a horrible person. Art is Piper’s escape but how long will that last?

The format this book was written in is really intriguing. I haven’t read a diary-esque book in a long time so I was really excited. I felt the diary entries were a little long (and filled with seemingly meaningless details) but I loved the illustrations that went with it. Overall, I did really like the writing style.

Piper was an okay character. Often the problem with characters that have a “passion” for something is that they fall either into a stereotype or end up being bland because all they’re personality comes form their hobby. Piper, unfortunately, wasn’t an exception to this. Everything was just about her art and how much she loved art and how much she wanted to go to NY. It’s stated so many times in the book I just started skimming over it. Also, the session with Andy Warhol. It wasn’t incorporated subtly and felt forced into the narrative. Piper seemed pigeonholed into this one type of art and, even though her friends were doing different things, she just seemed to appreciate traditional forms.

The other characters were weirdly written and but intriguing nonetheless. They started off as quirky props but eventually fleshed out into characters. I really hated the sister and skimmed through the scenes she was in. I didn’t know why no one was doing anything about her. Why was she allowed to move back in? I never felt any sympathy for her and she seemed almost like a caricature or a villain in a kids movie. There wasn’t anything for me to analyze.

As for the college aspect, I was surprised that she was allowed to apply for one college. Who actually thinks like that? And did no one think that maybe they should have looked into the tuition if she was going to get in? The whole thing seemed careless and made Piper look naive and bratty. It was a really disappointing subplot.

The main problem I had with this book is the lack of closure. We say Piper rise and fall but the ending seemed abrupt. We never found out what happened to the other characters or even what happened to Piper. A lot of assumptions had to be made to even get a slight idea of what was happening.

Final Thoughts: Read this book if you’re an artist or like books about artistic characters.



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