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Perfect by Sara Shepard
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Review of Perfect

In this third installment of the “Pretty Little Liars” series, the plot picks up steam.

Plot Spoilers Abound — Please Don’t Read if You Haven’t Read This Book

The plotting around Emily’s incipient lesbianism reads as rather heavy-handed. Are Mainline Philadelphians really that reactionary? I could imagine their Iowan cousins wanting to put Emily into sexual preference-reparative therapy, but I would expect Emily’s family’s disapproval to be more nuanced. It doesn’t jibe with the experiences of people I’ve known.

Spencer is having flashbacks, and it emerges that she is prone to (I’d guess) amnesiac fugue states. That kind of psychological problem is less common among the well-educated and well-to-do, and it felt like a heavy-handed plot device. Also, the ideas, that Spencer would flat-out plagiarize her sister’s economics essay, that the teacher wouldn’t note the similarity to her sister’s previous essay, and that the teacher never nominated Spencer’s sister’s essay for an Orchid award, are all a bit far-fetched.

Aria was summarily dumped by her AP English teacher and takes up with a young man who is extremely kind to her and opens his home to her. It’s suggested that she has sex with this virginal young man. And yet the first chance she gets she hops into the arms of the teacher? Is Aria that disloyal? That morally bankrupt? I guess so.

Hannah’s obsession with being perfect is threatened by her growing rift with her BFF Mona. A sends Hannah the dress from hell, and Hannah, without a second thought, assumes the gift is from Mona and that Mona is wordlessly inviting Hannah to her birthday party blow-out. The humiliation of Hannah at this party is amazingly cruel and thorough. A kind boy, Lucas, who has long had a crush on her, rescues her, and Hannah, rather than dying of embarrassment from what happened so publicly with Mona, makes out with him.

In the climax of the book, A slips up and sends Hannah a text message from her own phone number. Hannah immediately calls a gathering of her old friends in a deserted spot without bothering to share A’s identity. A shows up before the group is quite gathered and brutally mows down Hannah, damn near killing her.

It is about now that the improbability of the plot reaches a new high. Wouldn’t any sane child at this point talk to her parents or the police about this clearly homicidal stalker? Still, I was hooked, and I immediately went on to book #4. ( )
  CandaceVan | May 15, 2014 |
Worst of the series so far, but the next book is apparently the "big reveal", so onward I go. At this point, my inner completionist simply wants to tally the number of red herrings used to stretch this bizarre drama across this many pages. It certainly can't be because I got sucked into it like a soap opera and am actually dying to know what happens next. Right? RIGHT??? ( )
  CWatkinsNash | Sep 23, 2013 |
In the 3rd installment to the Pretty Little Liars series, Hannah, Spencer, Emily, and Aria face more problems with their mysterious stalker. Their stalker, who refers to themself as A, is out to get them again. Using dangerous tactics to get into their heads, A goes above and beyond to take down the four girls.
If I had a better book to read I wouldn't have finished this book. I just didn't enjoy it and I don't see myself finishing the rest of the series. It was a struggle to read my 100 pages each week I was reading it. I'd recommend it though to girls who enjoy the TV series and who enjoy easy books with no real purpose.
  br13kake | Apr 28, 2013 |
This book was brilliant and much better than the previous two.

SPOILER ALERT

I never thought Spencer would have something to do with Ali's murder.
The thing I like in this book is it focuses more on the mystery and suspense and Ali's note and who killed Ali rather than all the outrageous problems in the girls lives.

( )
  potterwholockian | Apr 2, 2013 |
I was really excited to read this one after I finished the second book in the series because the story was basically just starting to get interesting. The book starts off with the girls receiving another text message from the mysterious 'A', it's almost like 'A' wants them to find out who she/he is. Then of course, the girls are even deeper into their lies than before. Spencer has a new secret and 'A' knows all about it, dying to blow the lid on it and tell everyone else.

We actually get to find out about Spencer and Melissa's past in detail this time around. I thought it was great when we find out how they used to be so close but over time, they drifted apart and now they can't even stand the sight of each other. They do bond though in the book and a few times, it seems as though they might be getting over their hate for each other and may possibly move on.

Emily's story line in the book was fantastic! They completely left this out of the TV show so it was very interesting to read about. Her parents send her away to Iowa because she won't join the 'gay away' club, Tree Tops.

Hanna getting hit by the car was still there though, just with a few differences. One mainly being how she made a fool of herself at Mona's party but she can't remember it after she wakes up from her coma. And they completely left out Hanna and Lucas kissing in the TV show too! I wish they would have kept it in because it was really cute and I think their relationship is incredible. I love how he's planning on staying by her side through all the snide remarks and hatred she was getting from everyone.

And then we have Aria. Her story is pretty much the same as the TV show except for the part that she was actually dating Sean Ackard instead of Noel Kahn. And Sean told the police that she was seeing Ezra which obviously led to a lot of drama. Oh, also the whole story line with her Father and Meridith is different too. Completely different. I think it's much better. It makes the story more interesting.

I'm really excited about the fourth book. I actually started reading it straight after I finished this one because the story was too interesting. I'm nearly half way through it now. I'm probably after adding in a few parts from the fourth book in this review too without realizing so I probably won't write a review for it. But overall, I really loved this book. It's definitely the best in the series so far. Like I said before, If you began to read the series but got bored after the first book, keep reading! The story does pick up. ( )
  Liz-C | May 13, 2012 |
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"Someone finalyl bought the DiLaurentises' old hose," Emily Field's mother said. It was Saturday afternoon and Mrs. Fields sat at the kitchen table, bifocals perched on her nose, calmly doing her bills.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060887389, Paperback)

In Rosewood, Pennsylvania, four perfect-looking girls aren't nearly as perfect as they seem.

Aria can't resist her forbidden ex. Hanna is on the verge of losing her BFF. Emily is freaking out over a simple kiss. And Spencer can't keep her hands off anything that belongs to her sister.

Lucky me. I know these pretty little liars better than they know themselves. But it's hard keeping all of their secrets to myself. They better do as I say . . . or else!

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:32:19 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

After their missing friend's body is found and another of their friends commits suicide, four former best friends live in fear of their secrets being exposed by someone who is stalking them via their cell phones.

» see all 4 descriptions

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