Review: Perfect Chemistry

Author: Simone Elkeles
Publisher:  Razorbill
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Summary: 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.

I read this book and I honestly didn't know how I was going to review it. I sat on my desk with my laptop, thinking about what was I going to say. This was a decent book. It wasn't horrible. Then what was wrong? 

Its utter unoriginality. I felt like I read this book before. It was like...Like De-ju vu. 

The main characters Brittany Ellis and Alejandro Fuentes were just too cliche for me. Brittiany is your typical cheerleader who is obsessed with being "perfect". She kept repeating over and over again how she must remain perfect and it became a bit tedious after a while. Her sister is disabled and her protectiveness and love for her sister was her saving grace. But, this aspect of her character was not handled subtly. I personally preferred Alex's chapters. I could empathise with him more. I wish the book was just written from his point of view. 

The bet aspect of the novel was also cliche and really overdone in YA. Still, the romance was entertaining and I wanted everything to work out for them. The love between the characters and the stakes is what I really liked. 

The ending was a bit flat; and I didn't like the resolutions. The epilogue....What do I say about the epilogue. It was ridiculous. Seriously, the book was realistic and down to earth then I'm hit with this epilogue and I'm expected to believe the main characters found a cure for Alzheimer's. That just killed the little bit of the love I was beginning to feel. 

However, I didn't hate the novel. I just feel somewhat "meh" about it because it didn't really bring anything to the table. Still, the book was somewhat engaging, a fast read and compelling social commentary.


Melissa said...

I love Simone Elkele's writing, and I have read Perfect Chemistry. I definitely agree it is not really an original story at all, but I still rather enjoyed it. I highly suggest you read Leaving Paradise because it's a bit more dark and twisty than this :) Great review!

Nomes said...

haha. yeah, this book is hard-core mushy romance - but also has this tough thing going on that feels like a tv show or something. not sure how realistic it all is, the gang scene? very different here in australia...

i like the way she raises stakes but didnt much like brittany's chapters.

the epilogue was a crack up! LOL.

also, i liked leaving paradise better. it really sucked me in and i read it in one go and then... it didnt resonate a lot though. sometimes i like a book that gives me a huge sugar-rush-hit though :)

also, love the premise if leaving aradise. and, no weird epilogue... but a weirs ending (setting up for the sequel)