Skip to main content

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Genre: Contemporary/Romance

Release Date: 12/23/2008

Publisher: Walker Books for Young Readers

Purchase from Add to Goodreads


About the Book: Brittany and Alex are opposites. Brittany is a rich girl, Alex is a gang member. Brittany makes sure her life appears perfect, Alex tries to keep up a tough guy image. When the two are assigned to be chemistry partners, their lives collide and personalities clash. But as they learn more about each other they realize their lives aren't so different and that the chemistry they share can't be denied.

GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: This is one hot book! I had read lots of great reviews about this one, had my teens tell me how good it was, but it wasn't until I saw there was a sequel coming out that I knew I had to hurry up and read this one. I tore through it. If you ever find yourself in a reading slump, pick up Perfect Chemistry and it'll pull you right in.

We got rid of our romance genre in young adult in my library, but if we still had it, this book would be a perfect fit. This is a typical romance-they dislike each other, they start to like each other, there's miscommunication, and SPOILER a happy ending. Sure, it's somewhat predictable and parts of it were a little corny, but I ate it up anyway.

I wasn't sure I would like Brittany-or Alex for that matter. From the description they seemed like characters I would find obnoxious. But from the start I loved them both. I felt sorry for Brittany and she wasn't the rich girl snob I thought she'd be. Alex was a bad boy, but not so much a bad boy because he wanted to be, but because that was what life had handed him. I really liked this spin on the stereotypes.

I also really liked the alternating chapters from Alex and Brittany's point of view. Sometimes when I read books like that I find myself checking pages to see when the character I like will be appearing again. But I enjoyed both Alex and Brittany and they were great together as well as on their own.

There were some things about their relationship I didn't like-SPOILERS I really didn't like how Brittany went to the garage to seduce Alex. I thought that was a dumb way to try and get him back. I don't know-just didn't work for me. Also, the epilogue was corny, but I almost didn't care. It was exactly like something my sister always wished for in movies-she didn't just want a happy ending, she wanted the whole rest of the story. I'm hoping she'll pick this book up just because I know she'll get a kick out the ending!

The romance is hot, the characters are great, and it's a fast fun read. There is a lot of language-Alex is in a gang, and there are sexual situations-Alex and Brittany are seniors in high school so this isn't a light clean romance. For readers who want a great romance with lots of swoon worthy moments give Perfect Chemistry a try. I'm looking forward to Rules of Attraction just so I can visit with Brittany and Alex once again.

Full Disclosure: Reviewed from personal library copy (I bought it at Borders)

Who could forget the book trailer?


  1. Thanks for the review! This one has been on my mind lately. :)

  2. ahhh...another book to add to my tbr list! good review.

  3. Jami-This one stuck with me. I can't wait to read Rules of Attraction to get back to Alex and Brittany!

    Jessica-I know, my TBR list is every growing. I hope you get a chance to pick it up!:)

  4. I thought this book was un-put-downable. I was totally sucked in. And, like you, I was impressed with the characters once I got into the stories. I have a hard time empathizing with characters who have a really hard life just b/c they're beautiful and popular and, therefore, misunderstood. But once I got into the story, I realized Britany wasn't like that at all. I didn't like the epilogue either but I might have if I was younger.

  5. Natalie-I hate the rich girls that are snobby for no reason and I can't relate. But I felt for Brittany and understood why she was the way she was-and it made her stand out so much more. It's an addicting book-that's for sure! And I think if I was younger I would've loved the ending too.

  6. I totally agree that if your in a book slump...this is the one...thats how it worked for me.
    This was the first book of its kinda that I have ever read...and normally I don' go for it, but Simone Elkeles just plain sucked me in to these characters lives.
    SO looking forward to the release of 'Rules of Attraction'.
    Though it won't actually be about Alex and Brittany, I am looking forward to see how she brings the character of Alex's little brother Carlos to life.

  7. I LOVED this book! And I'm so glad you enjoyed it. It's kind of funny cause the characters were in a way so sterotypical, but at the same time they were unique, lol Alex and Brittany are one of my favorite couples in YA now :)

  8. Siriana-I'm so glad you thought it was a great book slump read! I'm really looking forward to Rules of Attraction and reading more about Carlos.

    Amber-I know-in some ways they were stereotypes, and in other ways not so much. I agree-they're one of my favorite YA couples too!

  9. This book is good for what ails you and that's all there is to it. :)

    I'm so glad it lived up to expectations for you. I found it even better the first time around.

    And, though RULES OF ATTRACTION focuses on Alex's brother Carlos, the few glimpses we get of Alex and Brittany are awesome. I love the two of them so much more than I expected to.

  10. I love this book to death! And I have to admit that I loved the epilogue, I love having the rest of the story, too!

  11. Angiegirl-Glad to hear good things about Rules of Attraction!

    SMBSLT-Sometimes you just need a nice cheesy ending to a book. :)

  12. Oh My God.
    After I read your review, I quickly got the ebook and read it. All in one go. And I have to say, this is THE BEST BOOK EVER! I love reading Amazing books. They leave you with this soft and happy glow inside of you. And it totally helps that Alex is so crush-worthy. Ah. I loved this book.:D

  13. ChickLitGirl-How did you read that fast??:) I'm glad you liked it-it's such a great read!

  14. This is going on my TBR list. I've been hearing about this one for a while, but the trailer didn't do it for me, so I discounted it. but I'm gonna pick it up !

  15. Jenny-I loved it. It's somewhat corny at times, but just a perfect romance. And the trailer makes the characters seem much more obnoxious than they really are.

  16. My students love this book. I can't keep it in.

  17. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  18. I'm so glad you liked this one. I loved it and it kind of made me think it was what might have been if Dally and Cherry from The Outsiders ever hooked up.


Post a Comment

I love hearing from other readers! Share your thoughts and chime in!

Popular posts from this blog

Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

Rating: 5/5 Stars Genre: Realistic Fiction Release Date: 2/26/2013 Add to Goodreads About the Book: Eleanor and Park are both misfits. When new girl Eleanor sits next to Park on the bus, they don't want anything to do with each other. But over the course of the school year, things change. It starts with comic books and becomes a friendship and a romance that the two will never forget. You never forget your first love. GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: Have you ever had a book sit on your shelf that you've heard so much hype about? And you think that books sounds like it would be right up your alley, but you're in a reading slump and you're afraid to give it a try unless it fails? I knew Eleanor and Park sounded like my perfect book, but I was in such an after committee slump that I even though I knew this book would help, I just didn't want to be disappointed. I should have known better because Eleanor and Park was perfect and everything that I had hoped it wou

Contact Me

  I love to hear from fellow readers and librarians! Send me an email to say hello! You can reach me at greenbeanteenqueen (at) gmail (dot) com

Post Downton Abbey Reading List

Downton Abbey is over (with a shocking and frustrating ending!) and now I'm suffering Downton Abbey withdrawal. I've got a reading list full of books that I hope will satisfy my post-Downton Abbey cravings and I thought I'd share what's in my pile and get suggestions for other after Downton reads. Here's what I hope to be reading this year (a mix of YA and adult titles):                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  A couple Julian Fellowes reads:                And a few re-reads:                    Edited to add: What's on your Post-Downton Abbey reading list?