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Perfect by Ellen Hopkins | Review

Perfect by Ellen Hopkins
Series: Impulse
Published by Simon and Schuster on Sept 11, 2013
Pages 622
Format Paperback
Source Bought
Goodreads •  B&N

    Everyone has something, someone, somewhere else that they’d rather be. For four high-school seniors, their goals of perfection are just as different as the paths they take to get there.
Cara’s parents’ unrealistic expectations have already sent her twin brother Conner spiraling toward suicide. For her, perfect means rejecting their ideals to take a chance on a new kind of love. Kendra covets the perfect face and body—no matter what surgeries and drugs she needs to get there. To score his perfect home run—on the field and off—Sean will sacrifice more than he can ever win back. And Andre realizes that to follow his heart and achieve his perfect performance, he’ll be living a life his ancestors would never understand.
Everyone wants to be perfect, but when perfection loses its meaning, how far will you go? What would you give up to be perfect?


     Oh how I love Ellen Hopkins. And how I love free verse. This story showed the very realistic struggle of internal problems for teenagers today. The book changes perspectives between five people: Cara, Kendra, Sean and Andre. All four of these teenagers are related back to one another somehow, but go through very different internal struggles. Seeing how their lives connected really brought the story together and left me wanting more. 

     Cara is a senior in high school. She has it all...the rich family, popularity and baseball playing boyfriend. One day, her family starts to unravel. Her parents only talk to her about her college plans and her brother, Connor, tried to commit suicide. He failed and instead landed himself in a mental illness ward. As she tries to steer clear of her family, it pushes her closer to her boyfriend Sean. As things begin to get more intense with her and Sean, she realizes that something is missing....that something is not quite right.  As she was skiing one day, she met a girl named Dani. Immediately the sparks flew...the sparks she should be feeling with a boy. As she tries to figure out who she is, the story of her struggles keep you interested and wanting whats best for her.

    Kendra is also a senior in high school. She also has it all....the rich family, popularity and a cute (ex) boyfriend. Kendra used to go out with Connor, Cara's suicidal boyfriend. Kendra was head over heels in love with him, until one day he surprisingly broke up with her. This made Kendra think...what was wrong with her? She's a model so she has to be the prettiest out there. As she looks in the mirror, all she sees is fat. She begins to stop eating, and instead takes medicine that will make her feel full so she will lose weight. Everybody notices her stick thin body, except for her mom who thinks she looks completely fine. How far will Kendra push herself until it causes her body to shut down?

    Sean is a senior in high school. He does not have it all. He lives with his uncle because his parents are no longer around. BUT he does have the popularity and super hot girlfriend. He's also the top player on the baseball team, hoping to get a scholarship to Stanford, the school of Cara's dreams and so it's his too. To make it into Stanford, he uses substances to enhance his game. When the side effects of all the cycles start catching up to him, things begin to fall apart. Will he be able to handle it?

   Andre is a senior in high school. He has the rich family but he's a laid back kind of guy and has many secrets. His family thinks he's going to class when he is really going to dance lessons. Also, he falls in love with Jenna, Kendra's younger sister who is a very showy girl and has an alcohol problem. Jenna won't see how much he cares about her (probably because she's always intoxicated). He struggles with coming clean to everybody about his love for dancing.

Overall, it is such a great book that shows the daily struggles of highschoolers. Ellen Hopkins, you have done it again. 


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