Sunday, March 29, 2009

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles Book Review

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles
(Walker & Co, Paperback, 2009)

Rating:

Brittany Ellis and Alex Fuentes are as different as two high schoolers can possibly be. Brittany is the captain of the cheerleading squad and Alex is part of a violent gang. When the two get thrown together as chemistry partners, the sparks fly. Perhaps Brittany is more than Miss Popular and Alex is smarter than he lets on. But Alex's gang involvement threatens any change they may have at happiness.

I have to give props to this Romeo & Juliet meets West Side Story plot line. I feel like this is popular in a lot of movies but isn't a common theme in books. (Leave me a comment if you can think of other examples.) The author builds up a lot of tension between Brittany and Alex, and not just romantic tension. Family, friends, gang members, and social status all act to build layers to the characters and complicate their growing relationship. Simone Elkeles had me convinced that Brittany and Alex were good for each other. The Spanish that was sprinkled throughout the novel threw me off a little because I don't speak Spanish. However, it did add a lot of authenticity to the story and it was easy enough to look up the Spanish words. One thing that really struck me is that there was a lot of sass to the novel. Mostly from Alex, which I found to be very funny and endearing. Although Perfect Chemistry is a bit more gritty than Stephenie Meyer's books, I would recommend this to Twilight fans because of the science lab partners bit and because of the romance.

16 comments:

  1. What an interesting combination. Not one I have seen before. I believe there is a Jodi Piccoult book that has a Romeo and Juliet feel but can't think of the name of it. The Pact, maybe.

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  2. I read about this book in my School Library Journal and thought is sounded like it could be good. I loved your review of it here!!

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  3. ooo- sounds good. I like Twilight. Plus, I was in Drumline in high school and we did a show of West Side Story- so I always have had a soft spot for the story.

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  4. I really liked this one as well. And I agree, Alex's sass was a big part of it. I was definitely rooting for them.

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  5. Interesting review, Miss Em. Not a book I've seen yet, but, since I've always loved West Side Story, one that piques my interest.

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  6. I loved this book; I'm a sucker for romance!

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  7. This one has been sitting on my TBR pile for a while now... you've just given me that extra push to get it read. Soon. Sounds enjoyable...

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  8. I absolutely loved this book. I agree with you, the banter between Alex and Brittany was one of my favorite aspects. I loved the invorporation of Spanish because it was all natural and authentic, and since I work at a dual immersion school I like it when books utilize multiple languages.

    Have you seen the music video for the book? After I read it I did a Q&A with the author on my site. In case you are interested, here is the link: http://mrsvsreviews.blogspot.com/search/label/Simone%20Elkeles

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  9. I love love love love love this book.

    I wouldn't compare it to twilight, though. Every book that features romance seems to get compared to Twilight lately. Perfect Chemistry deals with completely different issues that Twilight does.

    Simone Elkeles writes beautifully. Her characters are very dynamic.

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  10. I loved this book - such a cute, sweet book. And yes to the sass!

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  11. i absolutely loved this book, it's one of those rare romance novels that you don't want to put down, it happened to me, I read it in a day! great story line a must read.

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  12. This book was amazing....I don't even know why it spoke to me the way it did...but I think it's very close if not surely my favorite book...It hit close to home in it's style, characters and the plot. I really enjoyed it cover to cover...truly

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  13. i own the book and it is my favorite. i've also read the twilight series and this tops twilight. the love between them is more powerful and as brittany decides shes going to go for it thier love grows stronger. i really love this book.

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  14. i have read this book and i loveee it sooo much. i love how it has spanish words in it since im mexican. and i thought it was cute in the end. I THINK THIS BOOK SHOULD BE MADE INTO A MOVIE!!!

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  15. i just finished reading the book last night and thought it was the most amazing book iv ever read in my entire life. the book should really be made into a movie. i want to read the book over&over again because i love it sooo much(:

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  16. THIS BOOK IS 999,999,999 TIMES BETTER THAN TWILIGHT!! <33333

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