Thursday, December 23, 2010

Review #33: Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles (English)

Perfect Chemistry
Author: Simone Elkeles
Publisher: Walker
Gender: YA Romance/Drama
Publication Date: January 1st, 2008
Pages: 360 (Paperback)
When Brittany Ellis walks into chemistry class on the first day of senior year, she has no clue that her carefully created “perfect” life is about to unravel before her eyes. She’s forced to be lab partners with Alex Fuentes, a gang member from the other side of town, and he is about to threaten everything she's worked so hard for—her flawless reputation, her relationship with her boyfriend, and the secret that her home life is anything but perfect.

Alex is a bad boy and he knows it. So when he makes a bet with his friends to lure Brittany into his life, he thinks nothing of it. But soon Alex realizes Brittany is a real person with real problems, and suddenly the bet he made in arrogance turns into something much more.

In a passionate story about looking beneath the surface, Simone Elkeles breaks through the stereotypes and barriers that threaten to keep Brittany and Alex apart.
Still thrilled to have read Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy #5) previously, my intention was only to read the next volume in the VA series as soon as possible. I did not stand the waiting and ran to search where could I find a copy for myself cheaper and with fast shipping. But... It does not matter now, right? The thing is, I fell in love with Perfect Chemistry. This always happens to me in moments when I least expect it, when that real feeling of wanting to read a book had still not hit you. Then you go there, pick it up from the shelf, flips through it and, when you see, you have already half devoured the book. I can count on one hand how many readings were like this.

Alex (or better: Alejandro Fuentes) was only six years old when he witnessed the death of his father. His life, since then, happens around this fact. Aiming to protect his mother and two younger brothers, when grown up, he decides to join the gang to which his father belonged.

Brittany, captain of the cheerleading group of school, although seen as the golden girl, may have more problems than others think. Much more than that: her life revolves around being always perfect - wearing the perfect outfit, being the perfect daughter, having the perfect boyfriend. And everything would be perfect if it were not making her life increasingly miserable, unhappy. Brit feels pressured to follow the stereotypes that people kind of require and the will of her mother, who is probably afraid to admit that she has not found the perfection into the person Brit loves the most in the whole world, her older sister Shelley.

Narrated by both protagonists, alternately, Perfect Chemistry is a quick develop, coherent, allowing us to know each character from different perspectives. Also, the strategy of small chapters - 60 in almost 360 pages - happened to work well to me again: you read one chaper, but know the next is so small it will not do any harm, then you read this and more, and more, and more. Within hours, you have read it all.

Simone Elkeles united two seemingly different realities, but also so similar, and brought to the young adult literature. I was quite attracted by the story of each of them, the protagonists, for their qualities, characteristics and flaws, the dialogues - liking or not certain attitudes. More specifically, I am impressed with the emphasis on the reality of gang life and of who can be part of them.

The outcome could have been better developed, less old-fashioned and more surprising. And while cute, the epilogue was unnecessary, since we have no specific continuation of what was narrated in it. Still, however, my five stars by size can represent thousands feelings I have had for Perfect Chemistry.

I recommend it to all those lovers of a good steamy romance, a good drama, a good (little) cliche, and latin bad boys. Perfect Chemistry is all about being yourself no matter what people think of you, no matter what people try to make you to be. It is about to stop being what everyone wants or expects you to be, stop to think at all, without giving limits to your own happiness.

Resenha em Português

*Ganhe 10% de desconto ao comprar PERFECT CHEMISTRY através deste link.


  1. I haven't read this book, but definitely want to soon!

  2. I just read this book TWICE IN TWO DAYS! I loved it! Great review!

  3. hehehe.
    I've expressed my enthusiasm regarding this novel so many times it really annoys me now. hehehe. another great review Raila! So glad you posted this one in English! You very well know that I love every single book that you've read and that you play an important role in my reading preferences. Keep up the good reviews and I hope you get more books for you to read and enjoy! Merry Christmas!!! GOD bless!


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