I received this book for free from Rain Coast Books in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Title: Piper Perish
Author: Kayla Cagan
Song: Hair Up from Trolls
Published: March 7th, 2017 # of Pages: 408
Date Started: February 17th, 2017 Date Ended: February 19th, 2017
Category: Young Adult, Contemporary, Fiction
“Piper Perish inhales air and exhales art. The sooner she and her best friends can get out of Houston and into art school in New York City, the better. It’s been Piper’s dream her whole life, and now that senior year is halfway over, she’s never felt more ready. But in the final months before graduation, things are weird with her friends and stressful with three different guys, and Piper’s sister’s tyrannical mental state seems to thwart every attempt at happiness for the close-knit Perish family. Piper’s art just might be enough to get her out. But is she brave enough to seize that power, even if it means giving up what she’s always known? Debut author Kayla Cagan breathes new life into fiction in this ridiculously compelling, utterly authentic work featuring interior art from Rookie magazine illustrator Maria Ines Gul. Piper will have readers asking big questions along with her. What is love? What is friendship? What is family? What is home? And who is a person when she’s missing any one of these things?”
I know this review isn’t as long as some others I’ve written, but there is a reason why I’ve done this. With art one can see a painting numerous times, but each time they do they see and view it differently. I feel the same way about books. I finish it then after a while I come back to it. Once I have I see it completely different. So, when I do decide to come back and read Pipers story for a second time, I will update this review more. But for now, this is what you all get!
Feb 17th, 2017, 9:42 pm
First of all, THIS BOOK WAS ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. I fell in love with it from the first page!
The plot was breathtaking. The opening, dramatic and bold (with a little crazy). It pulled me in right from the first line. The rising action was good. It gave us more information on our characters and the story/lives they where living at the time. But when it reached that climax? Oh did my FEELS come out! THE PLOT TWISTS AND FEELS COMBINED KILLED ME AT THE CLIMAX. It was SO brilliantly done! The falling action became more dramatic and mind boggling by the page. The calm before the storm in a way. Even though it all became crazy and amazing. THAT CONCLUSION THOUGH. What a way to just cover me in gas and set me on fire. BECAUSE THAT ENDING WAS FIRE. I loved how it all came together at the end especially the one male character at the end. (Can I please find a guy like that in real life?! PLEASEEEEEE) Basically what I’m saying here is, the plot in this book was phenomenal. But just like art, sometimes you have to take a step back to see the bigger picture. Which in this case, was of a girl who lived her life through art. It was absolutely breathtaking. Brava!
That’s all for now. Must sleep. Tired.
Feb 18th, 2017, 1:09 am
The characters. Their passions and muses where absolutely wonderful! The way they all expressed themselves, (some more than others) were quirky, exhilarating, and overall just amazing. I personally would love to have them all as friends. (Except a few…) first we had our female lead, Piper Perish. Piper is a high school artist. A girl with big plans and dreams. To go to New York, paint, and be like Andy Warhol. She’s got the guts, the passion, and the artistic talent. But will her friends hold her back from what she loves? Or will she hold herself back? Her style was funky and bold. I loved reading her story so much. Then we had Pipers best friends Kitrina (Kit) and Enzo. Enzo is a good friend of Pipers. He’s a talented designer and is fabulous as can be. Even though he could be a jerk at times, he is still a really good friend to her. He cares about her, just like how Kit cares about her also. Kit has been Pipers friend since forever. She’s badass, makes her own jewelry, hell she runs epic shops and is an artist in her own unique way. They all love each other very much. NYC3 forever.
After the main three we also have Philip, Marli, Ronnie, CJ, Ms Adams, Mr Kenedy, Mr Campbell, and finally, Silas.
Each of these characters played a big role in the story of Piper Perish. Either if they were family members, teachers, business men, new romances/muses or bad people. All of these characters big or small played such a BIG role in this story. And I loved how all of them came together in the end. Blending/mixing together perfectly. Like mixing paint. Sometimes you have to mix for a while before everything is, “just right.”
1:09am should probably sleep now… to excited to find out what’s going to happen next.
February 19th, 2017, 2:10 am
This story honest to goodness blew me away. Never in my life have I ever read a contemporary read like this. I could feel Pipers emotions in her journal entries. Her love, pain, anguish. All of it. And it was breath taking. I literally could not put it down. At all. Hence why I stayed up until 2 am reading it and writing this review. I connected with Piper in a way I never thought I’d be able to. Through art. I’m in awe.
I look forward to reading more novels from Kayla Cagan in the future.
Congratulations Kayla Cagan on a breathtaking original story about family, art, and finding one’s muse. Piper Perish now holds a part of my heart captive. And I’m not worried about getting it back.
Tired. Going to bed now. I’m so happy!
Q&A With Kayla Cagan
In your novel, Piper Perish, we see Piper quote Andy Warhol a lot. And how Warhol inspired the majority of what Piper did. In your life, did/does Andy Warhol have the same inspiration for you like he does Piper? If so, explain why he does.
I was obviously aware of Andy Warhol growing up, but because I was a theater kid, my fascination was with another troubled artist, the playwright Tennessee Williams. I read all his plays and directed a few of them, read his letters, biographies, and memoirs, and watched all the footage I could find of him. I can still tell you anything about Tennessee Williams. So, I understand what it’s like to find the artist you click with, the one you obsess on, the one you try to unlock so that you can do your own work. Many of my friends who were and are artists went through Andy Warhol periods in high school and college and how they felt about Andy was how I felt about my Tennessee. I picked Andy Warhol as Piper’s inspiration because I thought he was accessible, fun, bright, talented, savvy – and entitled, too. I think they share a lot of the same traits and I think that’s part of why Piper is drawn (no pun intended) to him and why he ended up being her first real artist crush.