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3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  9,872 ratings  ·  948 reviews
Depicting with humor and insight the pressure to be outwardly perfect, this novel for ages 10-13 shows how one girl develops compassion for her own and others’ imperfections.

For 13-year-old Isabelle Lee, whose father has recently died, everything's normal on the outside. Isabelle describes the scene at school with bemused accuracy--the self-important (but really not bad) E
Paperback, 172 pages
Published September 16th 2004 by Milkweed Editions
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70th out of 1,978 books — 10,707 voters
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3rd out of 114 books — 391 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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I had a hard time deciding on rating this book. I didn't know if I wanted to give it 3 stars or 4 stars. Then, i finally decided with 3.5 stars.

Normally when I expect to read pink, little book like this one, I don't expect the tone to be dark even if the back of the book already said that it was. Eating disorders and death. What a great theme for children who needs to have their eyes open for the real world.

Isabelle Lee(Cool name, by the way) is a thirteen-year-old bulimic. Ever since her dad di
Mar 25, 2008 Suki rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone!!!!
Perfect by Natasha Friend, Milkweed Editions,2004, 232pgs.,$6.95,ISBN 1-57131-651-5

Who doesn’t want to be perfect? I thought. Everyone desires a perfect body, glamorous and appealing. Following the death of her father, Isabelle, a thirteen-year-old,tries to reach her goal, almost leading to the condition of an eating disorder. This summer Isabelle attends the “Eating Disorder and Body Image Therapy Group” which is part of “the deal” with her mom. Isabelle is going to seek the truth in the worl
Jun 15, 2008 Michelle rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: teenage girls
This is a YA book that I would definitely recommend to teenage girls. Friend has a simple, pleasant writing style that makes the novel a quick read, yet she still hits home on the issues of bulemia, loss of a parent, and most importantly, appearance vs. reality in the world of teenage girls. The progression the main character makes throughout the novel is entirely believable, as is the fact that she doesn't have it all figured out by the end of the novel, but she realizes it will come in time. F ...more
Marina S.
Perfect by Natasha Friend

Natasha Friend's book, Perfect, has a fairly simple story about a teenage girl with an eating disorder. The only twist is that the family of the main character, Isabelle, is coping with the tragic death of her father. As Isabelle's mother and sister are dealing with problems of their own, Isabelle is struggling with bulimia for her own reasons and is not happy when she is sent to 'Group' to take care of her problem. With the most popular girl at school also going to thes
This book is basically about a girl named Isabelle. She has a health problem. She throws up after she eats. When her mom finds out, she sends her to Group. But in Group she out Ashley, the most popular girl in school is also there. The main characters are Isabelle and Ashley. An internal conflict occured when Isabelle wasn't sure if she wanted to continue to throw up.
In this book, I could make a text to text connection. This book can also connect to "It's Not the End of the World" by Judy Blu
Karina Perales
The cover and the title of the book really caught my attention and make me want to read it.

In this book it tells the story of Isabelle Lee who is basically your normal teenage girl. Just like every girl she has some issues with her body and just problems with her family. Except Isabelle's problems with her body lead her to making herself throw up and just do bad things to her body. And then there's the fact that her Father died and her Mother isn't really a mother to her anymore. Her mother jus
Becky Schroeder
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 15, 2007 Toughlove rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: to any teenager who has an eating disorder
Perfect by Natasha Friend, is a book about a girl named Isabelle Lee, who has and eating disorder. She is thirteen years old, and the book tells about how her life is and all the problems that are going on, since her dad died. She has to start Group, after her little sister told on her, when she caught her throwing up. She is surprised when she sees Ashley Barnum, the most popular girl in the eighth grade, walk in. In Isabelle’s eyes, Ashley is perfect, and that is what she wants her life to be ...more
Daija Jefferson
Have you ever made yourself throw up because they didn't like how you look ? If so this is the book for you.The genre of this book is drama. This book is basically about a girl that was over weighted in she didn't like it so she decided to make herself throw up instead of exercising. She think that writing in her journal, and making herself throw up was her exercise. She really wanted to be like this girl named Ashley because she believe that she was so " PERFECT". I really like this book becaus ...more
Fresh out of eighth grade, I really wanted to read this book to see how “realistic” it was, considering it was based around two eighth graders.

Surprisingly, it was nearly exact in the way people are in middle school nowadays. The love notes from Brian may be a little farfetched (anyone who did that would be totally mortified), but hey, it just adds to the story.

Isabelle Lee was caught by her sister April throwing up in the bathroom. And, no, she didn’t have the flu. She was purging. So now, as p
Fake Name
It had its good bits, but for the most part wasn't great. Longer review when I'm not on my phone.
Bonus complaint: why is it that when people transliterate Hebrew they capitalize it? Shamash is not actually a proper noun. It should be italicized.
Full review to come (I should really start keeping a list of reviews I've labeled this way while without my laptop...)

Okay, here goes:
So, first, the way the author made it all Jewish-y toward the end. What was with that? Did she want to show off her b
Grade: B

At her first eating disorders therapy group, Isabelle is surprised to see Ashley, the prettiest, most popular and perfect eight grader in school. As the two become friends, Isabelle is invited to sit at the popular lunch table. But she's still unhappy, still binging and purging. Her dad is still dead and her mother is still too sad to be much of a mom. As she begins to realize Ashley isn't as perfect on the inside as she appears on the outside.

I read reviews calling debut writer Natasha
Tasia Webster

Have you ever made yourself throw up because you didn't like your weight? well that's what my character does very often in this story. I'm going to explain Isabelle lee complicated life to you. This book is fiction its person vs self conflict. In my opinion this amazing book for teens girl to be more confident.
this story take place in modern time. This book is book is about a girl who lost her father and is going threw a tough period in life right about now.she's a girl who is embarrass to ch
Amy Li
Dec 13, 2014 Amy Li added it
I choose this book to read because of the blurb. The blurb was interesting that it caught my attention to read it. After reading the book, the book taught me that you should always be true to yourself or you may regret. One quote from the book that shows this is " The thing is, if you look at a person's mouth, you can be fooled. What you have to do is look at their eyes. That's where the truth is. And with Ashley, the eyes weren't saying Great!. I can tell you that" (Friend 125). In other words, ...more
Britney Low
This book was recommended by my friend at school. I chose this book because my friend said that it was really good.
One thing that impressed me in the book is how the author wrote about the book and explained it perfectly throughout the story. One quote that explains what the book was about throughout the story is “When you believe in something, stand up for it, even if everyone is sitting.” This quote represents what I wrote because in the book a girl called Isabelle is bulimic and so is the mos
Taylor Stumpf
In the book “Perfect” by Natasha Friend is about a teenage girl, Isabelle, with a intense eating disorder. The grief of her dad's death has been very harsh to her and the mother causing Isabelle to have an eating disorder. The time they figured out that Isabelle had an eating disorder was when her younger sister caught her forcing herself to throw up. Isabelle begged for her sister not to tell mom but yet she told her mom. Ever since that day Isabelle has called her sister ape face. Ape face doe ...more
I read Perfect by Natasha Friend and enjoyed it a lot. The main character, Isabelle Lee has just lost her father and now is developing a serious problem, she is never comfortable with her own body. She wants to appear as a perfect 13 year old. But, one day when her evil 10 year old sister, April (Ape Face), walks into her leaning over the toilet forcing herself throw up, she ratts her out to her mother. When this happened Isabelle’s mother made her go to an Eating Disorder and Body Image Therapy ...more
Jan 29, 2015 Precious marked it as to-read
Have you ever made yourself throw up because you didn't like your weight? well that's what my character does very often in this story. Isabelle Lee is the main character in this book perfect and she doesn't like her life. Perfect is a realistic fiction novel about a good who doesn't have confident in her self. Isabelle thinks she is to fat so she makes herself throw up. Isabel's sister, April catches Isabel making herself throw up so she tells their mom. Isabella mom puts her in therapy.

The fi
Nov 18, 2014 Gabby added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Genesis Aldea
I read the book, perfect because my friend told me about it. Also I have read the book lush by the same author and I enjoy her books. I had high expectations to read this book. This book is a good book to read for any girl. When Isabelle was talking to Trish her therapy teacher she says, "I've thrown up twice today, I don't understand why you would think that's good." Isabelle struggles with bulimia after her father passed away. Her little sister catches her throwing up and tells her mother. The ...more
Perfect is a book of deep understanding and therapeutic remedies for anyone that suffers from eating disorders. This book shows how the loss of someone, the divorce of someone's parents, or any unwanted experience can lead to any effect. This book is about Isabelle who lost her father and how she deals with it by following the eating disoder of bulimia. All of her family can't get over the lost. Her mother is always crying and never wants to do anything or talk about anything, she just pretends ...more
Olivia A
In the book Perfect by Natasha Friend, Isabelle Lee is a thirteen year old girl has a lot going on in her life and no one to turn to. She lives with her mother and little sister April that she calls “Ape Face.” The loss of her father has been very difficult for her family. Her perfect world is not perfect anymore and causes her to have an eating disorder.

Isabelle has very few friends and does not have the greatest relationship with her mother or sister. After her sister tells her mother about h
I read Perfect for by Natasha Friend. I liked this book and thought it was a quick and easy to understand book. I would recommend this book more to girls than boys because it is told for the girl perspective. This would be a good book ages 12-15 to read over the summer. It was a fun book to read and has a nice ending,
` Perfect, was about a girl Isabelle you had an eating disorder, so every night so would go and throw up what she ate. Her younger sister April told her mom and no has to go to meet
Angie Crew
I read this book in about 2 hours and I liked it, I just didn't love it. I am a teacher so I enjoy reading books I can pass on to my students. I think this is a great book but I don't think my students will dig it. While it is very realistic, I think there is not enough action to keep the interests of students today UNLESS they are going through something similar. I did fear suggesting this book to my students for the following reasons...
1. You don't see any of the major negative effects of bing
emma kenniff
I thought that this book was very good and taught a very good lesson. Not giving away the lesson. But it did give people a chance to see someone there age go through an issue very serious. I never have enjoyed a book this good since The Fault In Our Stars (you have to read that book if you have not all ready) any way I love this author because she always has a purpose in writing her books and the ending of each book is always meaning full or just keeps you on the edge of your seat predicting wh ...more
Jana Rolann
Oct 15, 2009 Jana Rolann is currently reading it
Shelves: ssr
In the book Perfect, itis about a girl named isabelle. Isabelle has a problem, she makes herself throw up afer she eats. Isabelle does this because she is in pain from her father dying three years ago. Throughout the book, she makes a new friend in one of her groups. Her name is Ashley. They become great friends throughout the book and they both eat then make themselves throw up together. throughout the book, isabelle helps around th house and basically becomes the mother because her mo is depre ...more
Maddie Rooney
I think the book was very good. I really enjoyed it it. It opens your eyes to the real world and that not everything turns out what they seem. I would recommend this book to most middle school girls that like getting involved with drama.
May 02, 2009 Staci rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Young Teens
Shelves: 2009-reads
This author does a great job of introducing harmful body image and eating disorders to the 12 year-old demographic and above. I have found that my middle-school students really like reading her books and we find a lot to talk about. I know of girls who at the early age of 10 don't eat lunch and think they're fat. Friend takes the reader into the life of Isabelle and shows the reader how through depriving herself of food, Isabelle thinks she's controlling a part of her life that she feels is tota ...more
Jolene Lower
The book "Perfect" by Natasha Friend is one of the best books I have ever read! it is a story about a young girl with an eating disorder called bulimia. She also struggles with problems at home with her mother. Her mother is depressed about her husbands death and cries herself to sleep every night. this scares Isabelle (a.k.a belly) and her little sister Aril (a.k.a ape face) constantly. Natasha Friend talks about many different difficulties in her story, such as, family, self esteem, popularity ...more
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  • Looks
  • Feeling For Bones
  • Nothing
  • Life in the Fat Lane
  • Massive
  • Purge
  • Goodbye, Paper Doll
  • Thin
  • Life-Size
  • Skinny
  • Diary of an Anorexic Girl
  • Purge: Rehab Diaries
  • Thinspo
  • Diary of an Exercise Addict
  • Unwell
  • Biting Anorexia: A Firsthand Account of an Internal War
  • Hunger Point
  • Skin
A writer and full time mom, Natasha (Tasha, Tash) Friend has taught at the Brearley School in New York City and Ecole Bilingue in Cambridge. She also served as Director of the Brimmer and May Summer Camp in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts.

Her writing has appeared in "Family Fun" magazine and "Chicken Soup for the Volunteer's Soul." Tash lives in Connecticut with her husband and two little boys.

More about Natasha Friend...
Lush Bounce My Life in Black and White For Keeps Gobsmacked

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“When you believe in something, stand up for it, even if everyone is sitting.” 109 likes
“It's funny. When we first started hanging out I didn't want Ashley to think I was a pig, so I was careful not to eat too much in front of her....Now, I don't even think about it.” 2 likes
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