Chachic's Reviews > Perfect Chemistry

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles
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's review
May 27, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: gobbled-them-up, ebooks
Read from May 26 to 27, 2010

Originally posted in WordPress.

Perfect Chemistry created a lot of buzz in the blogosphere. I've been curious about this book since I first heard about it but unfortunately, it wasn't available here. Although Fully Booked did say that they had oncoming copies. So I've been bugging them for weeks, asking when the books will get here and they kept saying they didn't know. I finally got a copy a few days ago and I immediately started to read it.

Wow, I just keep on adding YA fiction novels in my favorites, one right after the other. Perfect Chemistry is a love story about a good girl and a bad boy, who are both more than who they seem to be. I know, I know, we've all heard and read and watched this kind of story before. There's Romeo and Juliet, West Side Story, Grease and so on and so forth. There's even a Grease reference in the book. Here's a quote from one of the scenes where Alex's friend is talking to him about Brittany:

"Oh, please, Alex. Colin Adams is cute, he's the captain of the football team and Fairfield's hero. You're like Danny Zuko in Grease. You smoke, you're in a gang, and you've dated the hottest bad girls around. Brittany is like Sandy... a Sandy who'll never show up to school in a black leather jacket with a ciggie hangin' from her mouth. Give up the fantasy."

While there are similarities to the love story classics, Perfect Chemistry still has its own unique qualities. I love that Brittany and Alex were forced by the teacher to be chemistry lab partners and that's how they get to know each other better. You can just imagine the fighting, two people with totally different lives, stuck with someone who each believes can't possibly understand what he/she is going through. Lab partner love story + love-hate relationship ♥ I'm a sucker for this kind of set-up, it calls out to the science nerd in me. The book also deals with several other issues such as Brittany's sister, Shelley, who has cerebral palsy and how it affects the whole family. Alex's side of the story focuses on his life as a reluctant gang member and how he's trying to protect his own family. The story is told from alternating points of view of Alex and Brittany. Both of them have problems and it was so much fun waiting for them to discover each other's hidden depths.

I just have to mention the wedding scene, when the bride and groom were dancing and people went up to the bride to pin money at the back of her dress. Alex said that it's tradition a Mexican tradition. Filipinos do that too! Well, not everyone does it but I've attended a wedding where they do that but they pin money on both the bride and groom and not just the bride. Maybe it's a Spanish tradition that just got passed on to us.

If you're in the mood for a modern day love story, then this is the right book for you. I admit that the premise is nothing new but when it's well-written and has believable characters, you can't help but love it just like you do the classics. Oh and I just have to mention that I also love the epilogue of this book. I'm looking forward to reading the sequel, which is about Alex's brother, although goodness knows when it'll ever get here.

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Quotes Chachic Liked

Simone Elkeles
“We're actors in our lives, pretendin' to be who we want people to think we are.”
Simone Elkeles, Perfect Chemistry

Simone Elkeles
“I want to try making things right because picking up the pieces is way better than leaving them the way they are.”
Simone Elkeles, Perfect Chemistry

Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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Roshini How's it going so far?

Chachic Just finished reading it! I loved it. I'm going to post a review later/tomorrow.

Chachic We can continue our discussion in this thread! Hahaha.

Peep (Pop! Pop!) Hahaha. Well I won't be able to really participate until I'm done, I don't want to see any spoilers, lol!

Chachic I'm not going to post spoilers, don't worry! :) When I write reviews, it's my policy not to mention spoilers as much as possible because I want to convince other people to read the book and I don't want to ruin their reading experience.

Hope you're liking it so far, Peep!

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