Review: Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

Perfect Chemistry
Author: Simone Elkeles
Publisher: Walker Publishing Company
Age Group: Teen
Source: Borrowed from Public Library
Amazon     Barnes and Noble     IndieBound
Rating: 3  out of 5 stars

Summary from GoodReads:

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.

My Thoughts:

I picked up this book because I heard that it was similar to Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry.  Like I mentioned many times before, I LOVED Pushing the Limits.  It is definitely my favorite book I’ve read so far this year.  So maybe I went into this book with my expectations too high.  I’m not saying I didn’t like this book, because I definitely did, but, well, it was PtL.

I wasn’t sure how I was going to feel about one of the MCs being in a gang, but I loved Alex!  He was a pretty complex character, trying to do what he thought would protect his family, but at the same time wishing he could go to college, and escape gang life.

I liked Brittany, but sometimes she did annoy me a little.  Sometimes I loved her, and sometimes there was major eye rolling on my part.  I really loved the relationship she had with her sister, though.

Paco was awesome.  That is all I can say about Paco.  He had Alex’s best interests at heart.  Such a wonderful best friend.

There was a statement made in this book that really pissed me off.  I don’t know if Elkeles really believes this, or if it is supposed to just be Alex’s mother’s opinion, but I didn’t like it.  Alex’s mother tells him that girls are manipulative.  All girls.  All women are manipulative bee-otchs, according the Mrs. Fuentes.  What????  Seriously!  And there was no negative statement given to contradict this!  Listen, some girls are manipulative, but it isn’t some trait that only pertains to girls!  Trust me, I’ve known plenty of manipulative guys!  Lots!  I hate when people act like girls are just catty.  It really infuriates me, so I can overreact sometimes about things like this.  So don’t hold my nitpicking against Perfect Chemistry too much.  I just wanted to vent a little.  I mean, that is what this blog if for, to discuss books.

But overall, I did enjoy this book, and I definitely recommend that you read it.

About Quinn

I'm a twenty-something children's librarian at a public library in Central New York. I've long left my teen years behind me, but I love to read YA and children's books. I have two adorable dogs. Ginger is a mix between a poodle and havanese, and Daphne is Bichon Frise. Other things I love: Favorite Movie: Singing in the Rain Favorite Book: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen Favorite TV Show: Monk
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