Friday, September 28, 2012

Perfect, by Ellen Hopkins

Perfect (Impulse, #2)  5 stars out of 5

Perfect is a perfectly woven tale of four teenagers who struggle every day to meet what their families and friends see as perfect, and connect those views with their own.  Cara (Conner’s twin sister from Impulse) struggles to understand and accept her own sexuality while also dealing with the issues surrounding her brother.  Kendra, the up and coming model, is anorexic and believes this is the only way to achieve her dreams of becoming a run-way model. Sean is an up and coming baseball player.  In order to achieve his dream, Sean takes steroids to give him an extra edge.  Unfortunately, the steroids cause Sean to get into trouble on and off the baseball field.  Andre, the dancer, feels pressure from his parents to figure out what he wants to do with his life.  As much as Andre wants to dance his parents believe this is not an acceptable future.

Ellen Hopkins has done an excellent job, of weaving a story that is both gripping and taboo. She has done a wonderful job at making things that are normally hard to read, become something that you can't stop reading. The way the sections in this book are written, if one section is skipped then the rest of the story will not make sense. Every character is inter-woven with every other character.  This means that if one section of the book is skipped then the rest sections will not make sense. The sections are each written to give the characters their own personality and makes each of them seem more real.   The book is written in poetry form, with hidden messages throughout it; which is my personal favorite part.

The things that Hopkins wrote about in this book are things that many teens face on a daily basis; pressure from parents to figure out their future, how to cope with their sexuality and will their friends and family still love them if they're gay/lesbian/bi/trans/question, how do they achieve their goals, and even death.  I think Hopkins has done a great job at making her readers feel like there is someone out there who understands them and what they are going through.

I loved this book, and have read it many times.  Hopkins is probably one of my favorite authors.  Every time I read one of her books, I feel like I have overcome a huge obstacle and it feels amazing!  I would recommend this book to anyone over the age of 15, simply because there are a lot of graphic situations that younger teens may not be ready to be exposed too.  I think parents should definitely read this book, if only to understand what many teens are going through.  Over all, I loved the book!

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