Author: Brindi Quinn
Released: June 15th 2017
Received: Review Request
I received a copy of The Pursuit of Zillow Stone from Brindi Quinn in exchange for a fair and honest review.
I wasn’t really sure what to expect when I got my copy of The Pursuit of Zillow Stone. I knew the basic premise thanks to the description, but that in no way prepared me for the world I was about to dive into. The world is just so expansive and detailed, as are all of the characters introduced. It certainly explains the size of this book!
The Pursuit of Zillow Stone is an interesting read; and while it reminded me of many books, it never ended up feeling derivative of any of them. Therefore I think fans of the Hunger Games series would enjoy it, as would Divergent fans. There’s a little bit of something for everyone; a touch of dystopian, a little bit of science fiction, a dash of romance, mix them all together and you get an expansive world to read about.
I feel like Brindi Quinn just came out of left field and starting throwing these really outstanding novels in my direction. And I love it. I feel like once every few years you can find a hidden gem of an author, and I know who my pick for this year’s would be.
First I want to talk a minute to talk about the main character’s name; Zillow Stone. I love that it is so different; when I first saw the title (before I read the description), I thought Zillow Stone was an item being tracked down or hunted (well, I wasn’t far off on that, just the item bit was wrong). Once I realized it was a person, my whole expectations for this novel changed. I also feel like her name was evocative – it signified something about the society she was raised in.
Zillow Stone knew from a young age that she was going to be marked upon turning twenty. The mark is an arrangement between the last two civilizations; in essence she’s a sacrifice on the part of her city for their safety and continued existence. But what if they were wrong about what was really happening on the outside?
I’ve mentioned it a couple of times up above, but I’m going to say it again here, Brindi Quinn’s world building skills are fantastic. The world that Zillow Stone lives in is complex, with multiple cities, histories, and viewpoints. In her journey to figure out the truth, Zillow (and by proxy we as well) learn so much about the world, all the lies, all the secrets, but also all the good there is left. There are a lot of subtle intricacies weaving around here, in order to tell the story of Zillow and her friends.
There’s a fairy tale, or a legend, depending on how you want to look at it, that Zillow grew up hearing. It’s beautiful and elegant in its simplicity. That one, small story influences the tone for the entire novel. With just a few short paragraphs, expectations have been formed, assumptions have been made.
I still can’t get over the amount of character development done in this novel. Obviously Zillow, being the main character is the most developed. She has many attributes required for surviving the predicament she’s been put into (and it’s been theorized that’s exactly why she was picked), but it’s more than that. Zillow starts off with a firm idea of how her world worked, only to have that all torn away from her (and all the while fighting for her life). Most people would have trouble coming up against a wall like that, but not her. She simply continued on and rebuilt her perspective of the world. I can’t even imagine the strength that would take.
I wasn’t sure if I was going to end up liking the other characters introduced, but most of them ended up growing on me. Especially as I watched them go through their own turmoil (similar to Zillow’s in many ways) and still come out on top. Let me assure you that none of their emotions were glossed over – it was always clear that these were people with real emotions and concerns. It’s the motives that were less than clear at times. The mysteries each character brought into the mix helped keep the novel flowing smoothly, always giving us something new to focus on.
The Pursuit of Zillow Stone is an interesting novel in one more way – it could easily end here, or it could become a series. Given that it was ended with my questions answered, I’d be content with that being all. But I’m also greedy and would love to see more of this world, if Brindi Quinn felt compelled to write a second novel to this series.