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***NOW AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00QCSU4VE

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.

390 pages, Kindle Edition

First published January 16, 2015

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Lily Paradis

4 books214 followers

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5 stars
494 (40%)
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326 (26%)
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211 (17%)
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86 (7%)
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98 (8%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 255 reviews
Profile Image for Robin.
156 reviews41 followers
April 1, 2015
Oh hey guess what, I already read these words when they were published 3 years ago by another author.
Profile Image for Belen.
68 reviews3 followers
April 1, 2015

I decided to read this book cause it was getting a lot of praises and was being recommended to me a lot cause of a certain series I've read. After reading it I was so angry and disgusted at reading scenes from my favorite author in this story. The storyline itself is just Like the other series, this one is just told in a different timeline of the story, but all the characters are there the plot is there. The way the first book ends is there.
I can't deal with the constant whining of the character. She claims to be a dark heart but ends up to be just a whiner. I couldn't connect with the characters, the feelings the writer tried to evoke just weren't there. The character's constant inner battle with her emotions were too confusing and her final eye opening Awe moment was a bit pathetic and embarrassing. This book fell a mile short from the finish line in getting me to feel for the characters or for the story. Other emotions were evoked, but maybe not what the author was aiming for.
Disgusted that it got so many praises for a book that was not original. But then again the praises don't surprise me she did plagiarize off of a great author.
Profile Image for Serena.
71 reviews38 followers
June 20, 2015
Revised review----I read Volition back in March. The characters didn't really mesh well and the story was choppy. It was recommended in various reading groups I was in and the author claimed to write like Tarryn Fisher (a favorite of mine) so I decided to read it. I noticed right away certain things were very much like Tarryn's books...scenes being the same with different character names and different setting. One huge thing stood out to me...the writing. Tarryn Fisher's writing blows me away. Her writing and stories are so unique and beautifully written. This book...not so much. I finished Volition, then immediately reread the Love Me With Lies series again because something was bugging me. I had to figure out what it was. I went to both authors Instagram pages and noticed similarities there too....book kissing, very similar hashtags to introduce new characters, love of skulls and being "dark"...all things Tarryn has done or liked for years. That creeped me out a bit. I'm not going to lie. During my reread, Lily came in the Volition Discussion Group one day after Tarryn made a post about a fellow author plagiarizing her work and said she might pull Volition from Amazon because she thinks she "accidentally did something. I would NEVER, EVER copy another author on purpose, but I did write Volition in the wee hours of the night and sometimes I read it back and think "I wrote that?" This solidified my feeling of something's not right here and in my mind, shows that she knows she copied another author.

So back to my reread, a few things that stood out at me:

The very first thing...the letter to the readers. This was done before by Tarryn Fisher before she released Mud Vein back in April 2014. After reading both letters, the one in the beginning of Volition (which was released in 2015) was a cheap knock off of Tarryn's original letter to her readers. She hit all of the points Fisher hit a year ago...this book is dark (which it's not), I write it to make you think (which it doesn't). The similarities between the two letters are uncanny. Below is just one example of copying Tarryn's letter:

Tarryn Fisher's letter to her readers that she released in a blog post on April 2, 2014: "I haven’t told you very much about it on purpose. I want you to go in blind."

Lily's wrote this in a blog post on December 14, 2014: "I’ve been really vague about what it’s about or even what genre to put it in because I want the reader to go in blind."

The book dedication has a similar feel and they both start off with Present/Now and state their Main Characters name.

I noticed things like Caleb's favorite color being "airport blue" to Tate's favorite "lightsaber Green". In The Opportunist, Caleb dabs paint on Olivia's ceiling and she is "grateful for that blob of paint." In Volition, a cigarette is stomped out on Tate's floor and she will always "love this little hole in the floor".

The Opportunist: "Caleb. His name rolls around my head..."
Volition: "Rockefeller. I roll the name around in my mouth..."

In Mud Vein, when talking about soulmates, Tarryn fisher says "There is a string that connects us that is not visible to the eye. Maybe every person has more than one soul they are connected to, and all over the world there are those invisible strings… Maybe the chances that you’ll find each and every one of your soul mates is slim. But sometimes you’re lucky enough to stumble across one. And you feel a tug. And it’s not so much a choice to love them though their flaws and through your differences, but rather you love them without even trying. You love their flaws"

Lily Paradis writes in Volition, "They say that you and your soul mate have a string connecting your hearts—not a literal string, but an invisible one."

Both roommates and their lollipops.
TO-- "Cammie was sucking on a lollipop, making wet, slurping noises"
Volition-- "she's eating a lollipop, which annoys me to no end because I can hear her slurping on it from across the room".

In both books, the main character marries the guy she met on the plane when she wasn't looking for love. TO right before Olivia gets married, "I look once more over my shoulder. Caleb is under the tree."
Volition right before Tate marries Hayden, "Jesse is waiting across the street, standing underneath the entrance to the Cathedral".

In TO, Olivia hums the theme song to Sponge Bob Square Pants. In Volition, Tate sings the song. In TO, Olivia described Caleb as a hurricane. In Volition, Tate describes herself as a hurricane. In Volition, there is a scene that reads just like the Rome scene from The Opportunist where Jesse is trying to win Tate back, and another scene very similar to the scene where Noah and Caleb talk in the bar about Olivia, Jesse and Hayden fight over who Tate belongs to. This just goes to show how many things are similar between the books! And there are so many more that I have written down/screen shots between the books. It really saddened me as I reread this and realized that this book is basically a mash up of characters, scenes and words from other books. If I could, I would downgrade my rating to 0 stars after reading both authors again and realizing this book is in no way, shape or form original. It's not okay to steal another authors words and thoughts and use them as your own. I hope that the author does the right thing and takes the book down and that she writes original and imaginative stories in the future.

Profile Image for Leslie.
Author 10 books186 followers
August 25, 2015

I've become extremely picky when choosing books for review. The really good ones are becoming extinct and even a few bad ones can sometimes be hidden behind a great cover. The memo has definitely been received...well, by most indies, anyway. Although, don't always judge a book by it's cover because cliche or not, it's just not that easy. That said, I'm happy, no, THRILLED to say Volition not only boasts a great cover, it's now on a list of my new favorite books of 2015!

There are vast arrays of broken, damaged and abused heroes and heroines out there. And let's face it, most have tattoos, piercings and substance abuse issues. Not to mention, so many are too far gone to even consider love or accept being loved.




Honestly, Volition isn't totally unique because it's definitely a romance, but it's how the story was told that makes me want to throw confetti like a lunatic at a funeral. Yeah, I'm happy the writer heard my cry and even gave me what I wanted---right in the gut.

Writing. I can't say it enough...GOOD WRITING!! It's what snags me on a hook until someone feels a little mercy and cuts me loose--and it's also what gets me every single time. I don't care if the characters are flawed or dysfunctional or even if the storyline isn't my preferred genre, it's the writing, people!

Profile Image for Margie.
394 reviews44 followers
August 10, 2016
This author plagiarised this story from one of my FAVORITE authors, so...NOPE... not reading
Profile Image for Missy Genneken.
78 reviews11 followers
June 16, 2015
Saw so many outstanding review I just couldn't wait to read it. Pretty quickly I realized I had read this book before.
Lots of this sort of thing happening:

“There is a string that connects us that is not visible to the eye. Maybe every person has more than one soul they are connected to, and all over the world there are those invisible strings… Maybe the chances that you’ll find each and every one of your soul mates is slim. But sometimes you’re lucky enough to stumble across one. And you feel a tug. And it’s not so much a choice to love them though their flaws and through your differences, but rather you love them without even trying. You love their flaws.” ― Tarryn Fisher

Turned into:

“They say that you and your soul mate have a string connecting your hearts—not a literal string, but an invisible one.”
― Lily Paradis

Made me sad and pretty angry. Hopefully one day this author will find her own words...
Profile Image for Michelle.
108 reviews
February 12, 2015
I didn't find Tate to really be "dark" and I felt like I kept waiting for something big to happen. I kept going back and thinking, "Am I missing where she had a relationship with Jesse or even really spoke to him?". I was supposed to believe that they were soulmates, however, I saw no true evidence of this in the book. In fact, Jesse barely spoke or had interaction with Tate throughout the book. We just got very brief snippets.
Profile Image for Simone.
776 reviews33 followers
March 9, 2015
My name is Tate McKenna and I'm beyond boring.
Profile Image for Chandra.
228 reviews37 followers
February 23, 2015
I didn't get this book.
It wasn't dark.
There wasn't a twist.
It wasn't really a love-triangle. (Yes I read the forward. I'm aware it wasn't really supposed to be a love-triangle, but I felt like she was trying to make it one and it didn't work.)
It was dumb.
Profile Image for Gaby.
181 reviews
Want to read
June 16, 2015

Profile Image for Allegria.
187 reviews4 followers
February 19, 2015
The book was missing 2 very pivotal ingredients. First, what dark side? I kept waiting for it because Tate (heroine) kept mentioning it about herself but she never DID anything rom book readers would consider "dark." Most likely what the author thought was "dark" was Tate's pain & rebellion fromn witnessing her parents' death & being unloved by her grandparents. But dark is what is born FROM pain, goes beyond teen rebellion, and this essential part was missing. Second and biggest miss was Tate's relationship with Jesse, or should I say what relationship? They barely spent any time together, and were never even close to being in a relationship OR friendship. I just didn't see it.

As for the writing, the author's voice was struggling. It kept getting interrupted with the author's attempts in trying to write beyond her style so it was glaringly noticeable and annoying.

I would've given it 1 star except for 2 things. One, I did enjoy the romance between Tate and Hayden. Second, it's obvious that the author put forth a lot of effort, thought, and heart into the book. The idea of the book was more original than a lot of rom authors and that's saying something, especially since this is her 2nd book.

Although I didn't give it 3 stars because no, I did not like the book, I will be keeping my eye out for this author because I see the potential in her writing and original ideas, and applaud her courage in executing them.

Profile Image for Nadine.
1,142 reviews217 followers
February 2, 2015
"My name is Tate McKenna, and I am a coward. I like to think that I'm being brave by picking up my life and moving across the country, but the glass of scotch in my hand says otherwise."

This book is very much a book that takes place primarily in the main character’s head. Not many books can accomplish a good plot, character development, etc. when the book is mostly in the main character’s head, but this book does it beautifully. Volition follows a woman named Tate as she’s running away from her hometown to get away from her past. She travels to New York where she meets a man who will make her question everything.

Volition oscillates between the past and the present. Each past chapter gives the reader a glimpse into what helped shaped the character the reader sees in the present. I enjoyed the present chapters more than the past chapters, but they were necessary to understand Tate as a character. More specifically, to understand her thought process and her actions. Tate is an emotionally dark character. She has had her heart broken a million times and has a sick fascination with death. Her overall dark demeanor is what really pulled me to her character. I have never read a character like Tate and I probably will not for awhile.

As I mentioned before, a book that takes place more in a character’s head can sometimes lack plot and the development of the other characters in the story. Lily Paradis does a fantastic job of creating characters that stand out on their own in the sea of Tate’s thoughts and feelings. Particularly Colin. I loved Colin. Colin is the best friend we all want. He’s understanding, tolerant, patient, and more. Tate and Colin’s friendship is like nothing I’ve ever read. They are both damaged in some way that make them appealing to one another, but have a way of communicating and being supportive to one another when the other needs it most. Their friendship was one of my favorite parts of this book. It was so real and raw. They connected on such a deep and profound level.
Catherine is more of the traditional best friend. She doesn’t understand Tate and Colin’s friendship, but she understands enough to know that there are times when she will not be able to help her best friend because Colin is the only one who can.
Hayden is another interesting character. He stands on his own as a characters, however we don’t really get much insight into what makes him act and speak the way he does. He is still an incredibly swoon worthy guy, but I only wish we would have gotten more or him.

Paradis’ writing and character/relationship growth rivals that of Colleen Hoover’s. Volition is written in a darkly poetic prose that reflects Tate’s moods throughout the entire book. The writing is my other favorite part of this book. It was an absolute pleasure to read such a darkly emotional story written in such beautiful prose.

"You know that feeling in the pit of your stomach that stays wit 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 any 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. I want it there so badly."

"I feel like all my limbs have turned to jelly, and it's like I'm forced to care about my actions for once. I don't like it, but I'm addicted to it at the same time."

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I have a feeling this book is going to stay with me for a while. If you’re a fan of Colleen Hoover books I would definitely recommend reading Volition. You will not be disappointed by Paradis’ writing style or her unbelievably firm grasp on the characters and their development.

I received this ARC in return for an honest review.
Profile Image for naz.
375 reviews384 followers
March 7, 2015
I feel numb. This book shattered me into tiny pieces and then some.

This is not your typical love story. There isn't anything typical about it to be honest. My god it's impossible for me right now to put into words the experience of Volition; was not expecting that at all. It was heartbreaking. It was beautiful. Tragic. But my gosh what a phenomenal read.
I hate love triangles but this one? I don't even know how i feel about it other than it's far from hate. It broke me completely, I still don't know how i feel about the ending and the overall outcome, I just sobbed and sobbed, felt so much for each of the characters, each of their point of views killed me. Especially Jesse's.

This is a twisted and flawed love story and i love it. They're always the best ones after all.
Profile Image for Kelly Roberson.
125 reviews176 followers
May 13, 2015
This book was absolutely incredible! The writing was beautiful, and Tate is one of the most different and unusual characters I've ever read from! I will have a review of this book up on my channel very soon!
Profile Image for grace.
130 reviews1,611 followers
March 16, 2015
I'm going to put up a video review! :)
Profile Image for Natasha at Book Baristas.
196 reviews180 followers
January 17, 2015
Review on blog: https://bookbaristas.wordpress.com/20...

This book was a privilege to have read.

If you plan on immersing yourself in Volition with high hopes of really enjoying the story, you need to go in with an open mind. Remember that perception is everything. In addition to having an open mind, I would highly recommend you read the foreword, seeing as it is vital to understanding everything that Volition stands for.

That being said, I wholeheartedly recommend this story to anyone willing to reflect on everything that they think they know about themselves.

Everyone has a dark side to their persona. Tate McKenna is the dark side. She is completely enveloped by her darkness and does not mind dwelling in it. She’s not the normal, likeable heroine present in a lot of books today. She embodies everything that people like to ignore about themselves.

Tate is selfish, spiteful, and vengeful. But at her core, Tate is hurting. She is roaming around, confused with herself and desperately seeking for more than what she is given.

I feel like the main reason behind all of Tate’s characteristics is that she is entirely in tune with her soul. More so than any other character I have ever read about.

“My body is fine. It’s my soul that aches. It’s always been my soul.”

I empathized a lot with Tate because I could easily see a lot of myself in her. She was honest and real from the beginning, even if her honesty was cruel and her reality was tough to accept.

“Absence doesn’t make the heart grow fonder. It makes you forget.”

There is a reason you go into this book knowing next to nothing about the story. I won’t be the one to tell you much about the insides of the story, so I apologize for this lack of a book description. I can’t take that away from you, especially if you do find yourself wanting to read this book.

I will tell you that this book is a work of art. It is something to be appreciated. It voices a lot of ideas that not many people want to think about. That’s why I loved it. It humbles you.

Something I want to bring to the reader’s attention is that books don’t belong to us. They belong entirely to the writer. The words, the story, the ideas, they are the writer’s to claim. What we take out of the story, that is what we get to keep. I feel like people forget to respect that aspect of reading. Authors don’t owe us anything.

I live by three important R’s: Read, respect, and review.

I will end on this note: Volition gave me a lot more than just a story. It was a learning experience about myself. I hope I never stop reading books like this; books that leave you feeling more insightful than you were before you started.
Profile Image for Kara.
539 reviews168 followers
March 9, 2015
The melodrama and the angst, OMGGGG. Just sooo cheesy.

The protagonist's decisions hardly ever made sense and bordered on TSTL.

Also, I did not care for the flipping back and forth from past to present with one guy and another. Bad editing decision. It chopped up the story too much and made me unable to connect to either storyline.

Sorry, but this flat-out sucked. I bought it on a whim because I saw it on GR, liked the cover, and it was set in NYC--also only 2.99. That was clearly a poor decision as I am DNFing at 22%. I do not recommend this. There are way better romances out there.
Profile Image for Konica.
476 reviews2 followers
March 28, 2015
DNF at 50% I've tried to like the book, the author's writing style was not for me. Not sure which direction she was going into, but I could not get into the book for the life of me. I can't even explain how I feel about this book.
Profile Image for The Y.A. Bookworm Blogger.
175 reviews1,138 followers
March 25, 2015
Wow. Incredible. Volition is unlike anything I've ever read before...I'm going to let this marinate in my brain a bit and then write a more coherent review within the next few days. Stay tuned!

But wow.
Profile Image for Emma Tonkin.
33 reviews10 followers
December 3, 2016
Oh my gosh. My words escape me. This book was absolutely amazing in its own twisted way. Thank you so much Lily, first of all for writing this beautiful but tragic story, that somehow managed to fill me with the same love and warmth, I felt while reading your phenomenal debut novel Ignite. Despite the inner darkness that Volition contains, it affected me in the same way. And second of all for giving me the opportunity to read your book by gifting it to me, I truly appreciate the kindness you extend to your readers.

The characters you create are absolutely mind blowing, and I can't even begin to describe the roller-coaster of emotions the love triangle put me through. I don't even know if that's what you would call the Tate, Hayden & Jesse situation, it was truly a mess. But I was rooting for Hayden throughout it all.

Jesse filled me with so much anxiety about how the story would end, but looking back on it now, I can't begin to describe the hatred but also love I feel towards him. Hayden, oh Hayden. He was so pure throughout the entirety of the novel, and he gave me so much clarity that things would be okay after the storm had passed, I hope to one day meet someone just like him. And Tate, what can I say. Her words, her soul and even just her attitude was every thing I could ask for. And it came time and time again that I would think "Tate, what on earth are you thinking!?" but I found it so refreshing to read about such a strong willed character that may have made a few too many bad choices. And that's everything that made Tate perfect, it's because she isn't perfect. And I love her with every fibre of my being.
Profile Image for Nina .
325 reviews110 followers
July 10, 2015
It is never okay to plagiarize. Ridiculous.
Profile Image for Kristen Ollie.
117 reviews25 followers
March 2, 2015
 photo volition_zpsypc9lkof.jpg

Aren't you somethin' to admire?
Cause your shine is somethin' like a mirror
And I can't help but notice
You reflect in this heart of mine
If you ever feel alone and
The glare makes me hard to find
Just know that I'm always
Parallel on the other side

**1 billion trillion "dark soul" stars!!**

I'm going to start this review by saying I finished this book late Saturday night/ Sunday morning. It's been awhile since I have stayed up late to finish a book. I couldn't put it down, I devoured it in one sitting. When I finished I re-read the ending several times through tear stained, watery eyes. I spent the entire next day listening to the playlist and bawled my eyes out again. The lyrics that I started this review with are Justin Timberlakes "Mirror" It will forever be my Hayden and Tate song! I have been waiting a LONG time for someone to write a story like this, it finally has been done and I was not prepared for what I got. This book is in a league of its own and the author almost didn't publish it because she was afraid nobody would like Tate and that nobody would get the story. Let me just say, I LOVED TATE!! I saw so much of myself in her. She is hands down one of my favorite female MC's. Lily Paradis isn't going to hand you the answers to this story on a silver platter, she is going to make you work for it and think about it. I was intrigued the entire time trying to feel and figure out Tate's connection with Jesse. The answers aren't revealed until the very end, and she packs them with a punch to the gut.

I dedicate this book to anyone who has a Jesse, I mean every girl has one right? For me I have several. I just so happened to marry my "Hayden" and I couldn't be happier about that. I feel like my review is all over the place but after two days I still feel this way about this story. My mind and heart are still all over the place and I can't even deal.

May you find yours.

This book is EVERYTHING.

Well done Lily. I have a book hangover from HELL, and I couldnt be happier.
Profile Image for Christine (Shh Moms Reading).
1,297 reviews539 followers
March 31, 2015
Sadly this book didn't work for me. The blurb caught my attention and I love trying out new authors.

Unfortunately the writing did not flow or draw me in. The MC was annoying and got on my nerves.

The author prides herself on being dark and this novel is anything but.

Unfortunately this author lacks originality with the story and because the writing was sub par I could not continue.
February 21, 2015
My review was posted on my blog, Confessions of a Book Blogger

This book hurt.

It hurt in a dark, twisty way.

A way that has you addicted and begging for more.

I recently read Ignite by Lily Paradis and whilst Volition is completely different, I knew Lily was an author to watch.

Volition is morbidly delightful, if that is a possibility. It really brings on the conflicted feelings and makes you dig deep and think.

The foreword really got to me. I was worried that I wasn’t going to understand what the Author wanted us to see in this novel, but I think I saw and felt things that really reached deep into my core.

“I feel his voice more than I hear it, and I don’t want to answer him. I don’t want to let him in, but there’s something seductive about that voice that seeps into every pore in my body”

On one level or another you are Tate, you have a Jesse but you need a Hayden. Maybe I’m a bit twisted but I enjoyed following Tate’s journey, feeling the anguish, the conflict and the doubt.

Everything she has been through and every emotion she experiences is fueled by something warped deep inside. Her anxiety and panic disorder are on full show and it is truly mesmerizing seeing her learning to overcome something so deep and trust someone not only with her heart, but also her soul.

“We were drawn together like magnets, but we didn’t understand why we were so important to each other”

I think everyone will have their own unique experience with this novel. It really makes you ponder and burrow inside through all your feelings and past experiences.

I really feel as though this novel helped me let go of my past in a sense, it is so incredibly strange to feel that part of you disentangle – it’s like you finally figured out how to unravel the Christmas lights.

“You have a heart and you have a soul and you have me. You’re not as awful as you think you are. You’re just not the same as everyone else”

Paradis dedicates this book “For anyone who can’t let go of their Jesse”. I love this, I feel as though it could be perceived in so many different ways. Maybe it is just me but I don’t think I believe in soul mates, I believe in everything happening for a reason and that you will have bonds to your first love… but soul mates?

So for me, this book symbolizes your first love and the steps you take in realizing there is someone else out there that loves you and cares for you in the way your mind, body and soul deserves.

“I want him to set me on fire and let me burn until I’m nothing but ashes. Then, I want him to set a flame to those ashes because he’s the only one who can”

This book has wit, it has emotions, deep expressive emotions and a comedic twist. It is essentially a novel about Tate McKenna overcoming some deep seeded demons, learning to let go and accepting her past – embracing her future.

This novel is only made better by the best friends, Catherine & Colin and the stunner of a guy, Hayden Rockefeller – with his lightsaber green eyes *swoooon*

“I expected to come here and take her away, but she’s different than she used to be. She was always stubborn, but she’s immovable now”

When I read this book, I thought Ugly Love, Gone Girl and Lily Paradis.

This book has Lily’s unique style all over it.

I am currently nursing a serious book hangover.

“I need to know that I’m not alone because my mind is a dangerous place to be without company”
March 26, 2015
Serious problems with this book. Biggest two being 1. Where was the so called relationship between Jesse and Tate? They hardly interacted much less spoke to one another.
2. We find out at the end on Tate's wedding day to Hayden that Tate's grandmother paid Jesse off to stay away from Tate so she wouldn't follow in her mothers footsteps and marry below her class? Jesse never thought to mention this to Tate? Ever? No he just kept it inside his stupid head. WTF?!?!?!?! This book made no sense. So many plot holes, I don't understand how this book has such a high rating other than that they were bribed to give good reviews. And wtf was with the random Sam and Delilah story?
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Lauren Wyant.
45 reviews2 followers
June 16, 2015
If you liked this book, you should read the books these words were stolen from!!
Profile Image for Hazel (Stay Bookish).
635 reviews1,618 followers
March 17, 2015
Visit Stay Bookish for more book reviews!

Actual rating: 4.5

Where do I even begin? Volition made my heart ache. It's the good kind of hurt- the kind you get when you're enthralled by the characters and you feel the prose speaking to you, coming alive.
“I look up into the sky to see all of the drops falling on the ground before they make contact. I realize the drops have more in common with me than I think. We’re all just falling until we’re not falling, and we don’t really have a choice where we land.”
Even with Lily's foreword, I wasn't sure what to expect with this one. I knew it was going to be different from her debut novel, Ignite. But upon reading, different felt like an understatement. Volition was uncharted territory. I couldn't help but devour it and feel it.
“Roots. I have roots. It both thrills me and kills me that these roots might become a sapling—or God forbid, an entire tree.”
Tate McKenna is a force to be reckoned with- a girl with a truly dark soul. She escapes her hometown, running away from her tragic past and Jesse Elliott, the boy who she's felt magnetized to her whole life. She takes a plane to New York where she meets the irresistible Hayden Rockefeller. Even with the alternate now and then chapters, Tate's morose narrative was unchanging. I know it won't appeal to all kinds of readers- but I personally grew to really like it, despite my initial skepticism. Tate's character was genuine, not once hiding her destructive flaws and thoughts, and I couldn't help but root for her to break free of the darkness that clawed over heart and find happiness.
“It's then- while he's staring at me and I'm staring back, and then I'm looking out at the city behind him- that I realize something. I want him to be the ache in my heart. He just isn't.”
Hayden was a wonderful  romantic interest. He was the perfect guy for Tate and I just loved him and wanted him to be the one for her. Tate is attracted to him from the start but what with struggling with her demons, she was largely unprepared and reluctant to commit to a relationship. I admired how Hayden was so patient and loving and supportive when it came to Tate. He's been through his own tragedy before and he understood Tate so much, knew her on some deep unshakeable level. My Tate x Hayden feels are strong, I tell you.
“He just feels necessary. Felt. Feel. Felt. Feel. I can't stop feeling. How unfortunate.”
I think my only minor reservation with Volition was how I grappled to understand the connection (read: near-obsession) Tate had with Jesse. I did get that even Tate and everyone else around her couldn't quite understand it also. (I appreciated how Colin and Catherine, Tate's awesome best friends, pointed out how unhealthy it was.) Though I had no liking for Jesse, I wish his character had been more concrete just so that I could make more sense of what drew Tate towards him or him towards her. Basically, at some point, I felt a little dubious about how authentic/realistic the Tate-Jesse thing was.  That said, it was the crux of the story and I wouldn't wish it away.
“I want all of him. I want to be engulfed by him. I want him to set me on fire and let me burn until I’m nothing but ashes. Then, I want him to set a flame to those ashes because he’s the only one who can.”
The writing in Volition is seriously my favorite thing about it. It was excellent and lyrical! Reading Lily's words felt like listening to a haunting song, the kind you keep replaying over and over for an indecipherable reason. I loved to infinity how the idea of soul mates and fate were explored in the book. It made me pause and think hard- something I treasured when it comes to reading.
“We’re soul mates. Did you know that? In a different way. You and I, Tate Evaline McKenna, share space that no one else shares. We’re the same person in two different bodies. No one else will ever understand us the way that we understand each other.”
Volition turned out to be really thought-provoking and full of beautiful quotes. It's far from light and cheerful and it won't be for everyone but it's a great endeavor that I hope more readers will choose to venture on. Meanwhile, I'm very much ready for whatever Lily Paradis has in store for us next.
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