Book Review: Perfected

Author: Kate Jarvik Birch

Genre: YA fantasy
Published: July 1st 2014
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Pages: 304
Source: Purchased Hardcover
Available at: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Goodreads Summary:

Perfection comes at a price. As soon as the government passed legislation allowing humans to be genetically engineered and sold as pets, the rich and powerful rushed to own beautiful girls like Ella. Trained from birth to be graceful, demure, and above all, perfect, these “family companions” enter their masters’ homes prepared to live a life of idle luxury.

Ella is happy with her new role as playmate for a congressman’s bubbly young daughter, but she doesn’t expect Penn, the congressman’s handsome and rebellious son. He’s the only person who sees beyond the perfect exterior to the girl within. Falling for him goes against every rule she knows…and the freedom she finds with him is intoxicating.

But when Ella is kidnapped and thrust into the dark underworld lurking beneath her pampered life, she’s faced with an unthinkable choice. Because the only thing more dangerous than staying with Penn’s family is leaving…and if she’s unsuccessful, she’ll face a fate far worse than death.

For fans of Kiera Cass’ Selection series and Lauren DeStefano’s Chemical Garden series, Perfected is a chilling look at what it means to be human, and a stunning celebration of the power of love to set us free, wrapped in a glamorous—and dangerous—bow.

My Rating of this Book – 5 out of 5 stars

My Review:

When I picked up Perfected, I was definitely intrigued by the concept, but I didn’t expect to get hooked after the first chapter. It wasn’t a glue-to-your-seat thriller, yet I had a hard time putting it down for any reason. I just wanted to keep reading more.

Now, I will say right away that this novel does contain what I would consider controversial topics, particularly when it comes to human and women’s rights. How these girls like Ella were raised and often treated was downright disturbing. There were even times I just wanted to literally puke in disgust. However, I felt the creepiness emphasized the life style, the building political and ethical tension, and the forbidden romance.

At first, I was a bit iffy on Ella’s character. I didn’t like how she was treated and how she’d often just accept it. Of course, considering her background and her “training” I can sort of understand. When you’re raised with a certain life style, there are just things you’re simply blinded to. But at least Ella wasn’t as ignorant as she first appeared. I liked that she questioned her situation; knew when to follow her heart; and saw the world as it was while still maintaining an innocent hope that things would get better.

Penn, on the other hand, was my all-time favorite character in Perfected from scene one and will potentially end up as a 2014 book boyfriend candidate. I loved his tendency to defy his father at every possible turn; how he treated Ella like a human being rather than a doll or a dog; and how he shared secret parts of his life with her. He was honestly the best part of the novel. Which just made the story even more heart wrenching at the end. I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but I definitely hope for a sequel. I can’t stand hanging like this.

If you love suspenseful, romantic, controversial young adult novels—such as Descendants of Isis series by Kelsey Ketch or the Covenant series by Jennifer L. Armentrout—then I highly recommend reading Perfected. It’s really an awesome read.

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