Talented authoress Simone Elkeles was born on the 24th of April, 1970, in Chicago, Illinois, United States of America. Elkeles is a prominent American writer, most known for her young adult novels, like the How to Ruin series and her famous trilogy named Perfect Chemistry. That’s why you can also find it on our list of the best young adult romance books.
A number of her novels have been featured on the New York Times Bestseller list, as well. The authoress’ accolades feature winning the prestigious RITA Award in 2010 for Best Young Adult Romances, too!
The Early Life of Elkeles
Elkeles, as we noted, was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. However, the family soon moved to Glenview, Illinois, then once more after Elkeles finished her freshman year at high school, to Deerfield, Illinois. Elkeles went to the Deerfield High School, graduating in 1988.
Following high school, Elkeles went to Purdue University, but actually graduated from the University of Illinois, with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology. Her Master’s Degree was in industrial relations, which she acquired from Loyola University-Chicago. After graduating, Simone started working at the manufacturing company her father owned. However, he died and at the age of twenty-four, Simone became the CEO.
The Start of Elkeles’ Career
Elkeles began her ventures in writing at the turn of the century, but didn’t get an agent until later. After she finished her first book, she couldn’t find an agent for five years. However, she did find Nadia Cornier and Nadia was fond of Simone’s work and signed her soon after. Three books later, Elkeles and Nadia finished their venture together and Elkeles signed with Kristin Nelson and they’ve been together ever since.
In 2014, unfortunately, Elkeles and her husband split and divorced. Simone Elkeles has two children, a son and a daughter.
With that noted, we can now give our book review.
Perfect Chemistry Book
This is the quintessential Simone Elkeles novel, without a shadow of a doubt. It is amongst her strongest works and is part of her adored series of the same name. The series, itself, is comprised of three novels, while one untitled sequel has been in works for a number of years now, though no information on its publication has been released. Perfect Chemistry book was published in the year of 2008.
Existing and being can be a daunting task. Our everyday life is filled with troubles, aches, pains, anxieties, and obstacles abundant so that we either brave the storm that is right in front of us with our head held high, or we bear our mask to conceal the pangs that ail us at the moment.
In this novel, we bear witness to two varying kinds of people, though their spirits are connected ones. Both of them tread the waters of life with their different armors and guises just so that they can make it through the day. As the story at hand would have it, we are going to see the two of them reveal the scarcely known things about them, no matter how covert or hidden. What is uncovered is the manner in which they want to be portrayed in the world, and it is in bleak contrast to their true selves. You can learn more about Simone’s work in our selection of the best high school romance books.
The Struggles in Our World
One of the characters is Alex. Alex is a hard-wrought, menacing young Latino. Alex deals with gangs on a regular basis, in spite of how attractive and handsome his looks may be. In line with his protective attitude and regard for his family, Alex was forced to join the gang of the Latino Bloods so that nothing may happen to them.
Thus far, he hasn’t been at ends with the law; he hasn’t committed anything criminal, he hasn’t taken a life, nor has he dabbled with drug selling. However, the tasks ahead of him spell just what he was staying away all this time.
One day, he comes by a girl named Brittany and at the first sight of her, he knows that she’s all he needs. He convinces himself that she’s all looks and that there’s nothing deep about her, but as he would learn, the depths of Brittany are akin to the pit – coincidentally just as his own are.
As we get to know her, Brittany is anything but the archetypical empty-headed Barbie doll that Alex tried to make himself think she is. Her beauty is only overshadowed by the kind, endearing hart that she has, and the loveable personality that she owes to her pleasant countenance.
The stresses of everyday life encumbered on Brittany leaving her with no other choice but to put on a cloak to fool the onlookers. As she and Alex get to know each other, we feel that a romance is building up and we can’t help but admire the prose work of Elkeles – just brilliant.
Taking a Leap of Faith
However, with each passing day, it is more and more difficult to keep the act up. Her family dynamic tortures her days; her mother is a troubled woman walking on the ledge towards an emotional breakdown, while her father is rarely ever home, but at work.
Shelley, her sister, is a mentally-handicapped person and Brittany takes great care of her day in and day out. The moment when we see how comfortable Brittany is with Alex is when she introduces Shelley to him. This moment wriggles the heart and the feeling like none other, genuinely.
The characters in the story, not just Alex and Brittany, are candidly multilayered. They do not feel like they’re here to make a point or just to fill a scene with some dialogue and then vanish, never to be seen. They are present throughout and they make the story richer.
While we have avoided spoiling the most significant and heartrending points of the story, we’ll say that the climactic point of the story will do nothing less than rip out the heart of the reader. The story is just so wonderful and all praise be with Simone Elkeles. The Perfect Chemistry book review of ours can’t come close to her majestic work, but we can try.
What We Recommend Next
Perfect Chemistry book series boasts two other books, Rules of Attraction and Chain Reaction, and they are treats to read, as well!