Review: Chain Reaction by Simone ElkelesChain Reaction by Simone Elkeles
Series: Perfect Chemistry #3
on August 16, 2011
Pages: 310
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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Like his brothers, Luis Fuentes is a risk taker; whether he's scaling the Rocky Mountains or dreaming of a future as an astronaut, Luis is always looking for the next thrill. Nikki Cruz lives her life by certain rules -, don't trust a boy who says "I love you", boys lie to get their own way and never date a boy from the south side of Fairfield. Then she meets Luis at his brother Alex's wedding and suddenly she's tempted to break all her rules. Getting Nikki to give him a chance is Luis's biggest challenge, until he finds himself targeted by the head of the gang that nearly destroyed his brothers' lives. Will Luis's feelings for Nikki be enough to stop him from entering a dark and violent world that could prove to be the ultimate risk?

My thoughts…

Chain Reaction is the final book in the Perfect Chemistry series. This has been a really good series and I’m very happy that I stumbled upon it. Ms Elkeles has a great writing style and her work will grab your attention from the very beginning and keep you turning page after page to find out what happens next.

Luis, who is the youngest of three brothers has his life all mapped out. He wants to be an astronaut in the future. He gets good grades and keeps out of trouble until one day when the new leader of the Latino Blood threatens Luis’s family. If Luis doesn’t do exactly what Chuy tells him to do, their safety will be at risk. Luis reminds me in a lot of ways of his brother Alex with the exception that Alex only saw his future as being a gangbanger. Carlos wants no part of that life.

Nikki. Nikki’s been burned in the past by her former boyfriend Marco. She fell in love with him, gave her innocence to him and not long after Marco breaks things off with her. She’s brokenhearted, feels used and vows to never let another boy get close to her again.

Luis and Nikki meet each other at his brother Alex’s wedding. He feels an instant attraction to her but she see’s him for the player she thinks he is and wants nothing to do with him. After their first meeting things skip ahead to two years later when Luis and his mother move back to Chicago from Colorado. Both Luis and Nikki are starting their senior year and end up having “Chemistry” class together. Although their attraction is apparent from the beginning, Nikki tries to stay as far away from Luis as possible. She’s determined not to fall for him.

I really enjoyed how this story turned out. Ms Elkeles adds a couple of twists to the story which made it that much more enjoyable. Just when you think it will end a certain way it doesn’t. I’m sort of sad this is the end for this series, but I look forward to reading more works by Ms Elkeles in the future. If your a Young Adult fan then the “Perfect Chemistry” series is for you.

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Review: Rules of Attraction by Simone ElkelesRules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles
Series: Perfect Chemistry #2
on April 27, 2010
Pages: 326
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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More sparks will fly in the sequel to Simone Elkeles’s breakout book Perfect Chemistry.

When Carlos Fuentes returns to America after living in Mexico for a year, he doesn’t want any part of the life his older brother Alex has laid out for him at a high school in Colorado. Carlos likes living his life on the edge and wants to carve his own path -- just like Alex did. Then he meets Kiara Westford. She doesn’t talk much and is completely intimidated by Carlos’ wild ways. As they get to know one another, Carlos assumes Kiara thinks she’s too good for him, and refuses to admit that she might be getting to him. But he soon realizes that being himself is exactly what Kiara needs right now.

STOP!
This review contains spoilers regarding Perfect Chemistry, Book One.
If you haven’t yet read Perfect Chemistry you may not want to continue reading.

My thoughts…

Rules of Attraction is the second book in the “Perfect Chemistry” series by author Simone Elkeles. While I enjoyed this story, I felt it was lacking a bit. I had a hard time getting into it at first. That’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy it because I did. I just think my expectations were set really high because Perfect Chemistry was such an amazing read.

I really liked Kiara’s character from the very beginning. She’s a bit naive and inexperienced but she’s also a little bit of a rebel. When she makes Carlos double chocolate chip cookies I laughed so hard. What she did was really clever.
It took me a little bit to warm up to Carlos. He’s like his brother Alex in some ways but not in others. I found myself wondering what he wanted for his future. Did he want marriage and kids? To go to college to better himself? I just couldn’t figure it out at first.

Once Carlos and Kiara come together things start to heat up nicely. I’ve not a real big fan of high school age characters having sex but Ms Elkeles wrote the scene in such a way that it wasn’t overly explicit.

What I didn’t like about the story is the relationship between Kiara and Carlos seemed rushed. I don’t think there was enough character development for these two to fall in love with each other so quickly.

Also I wasn’t fond of the fact that the author put Alex and Brittany’s relationship in the mix with this story. At the end of Perfect Chemistry they get their HEA and it didn’t seem right to have them break up during this book regardless of whether they end up getting back together or not because at the end of Perfect Chemistry the epilogue is set several years into the future so it was sort of a pointless element.

The cover for Rules of Attraction is perfect and spot on. I don’t think they could have designed a more perfect cover for this story.

Overall I enjoyed Rules of Attraction. I’m looking forward to reading Chain Reaction, the third and final book in this series.

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Review: Perfect Chemistry by Simone ElkelesPerfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles
Series: Perfect Chemistry #1
on December 23, 2008
Pages: 357
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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A fresh, urban twist on the classic tale of star-crossed lovers.

When Brittany Ellis walks into chemistry class on the first day of senior year, she has no clue that her carefully created “perfect” life is about to unravel before her eyes. She’s forced to be lab partners with Alex Fuentes, a gang member from the other side of town, and he is about to threaten everything she's worked so hard for—her flawless reputation, her relationship with her boyfriend, and the secret that her home life is anything but perfect. Alex is a bad boy and he knows it. So when he makes a bet with his friends to lure Brittany into his life, he thinks nothing of it. But soon Alex realizes Brittany is a real person with real problems, and suddenly the bet he made in arrogance turns into something much more.

My thoughts…

What an great story. Perfect Chemistry is the first book in the Perfect Chemistry series by Author Simone Elkeles. I’ve never read a story by her before so I had no expectations going into the book.

I loved both Brittany and Alex from the beginning. Brittany has the best of everything but she’s tired of trying to be the perfect person her mother wants her to be all the time. She wants to be a normal teenager. One that doesn’t have to worry about her hair, makeup and what she’s wearing constantly.

Alex is her complete opposite. He’s a gang member and has followed in his late fathers footsteps. He joins the Latino Blood so his family is protected. Although Brittany and Alex start off on the wrong foot the chemistry between the two is apparent from the beginning.

I enjoyed every aspect of this story with the exception of one thing. There were quite a few instances where spanish was used and no explanation of the words were given. Don’t get me wrong, I love latin heroes and reading dialogue that includes Spanish. It’s pretty sexy. I’m just used to it being followed up by what the words actually mean in english.

I’m so happy to have found this series. I’m really looking forward to reading Rules of Attraction, Book 2 and Chain Reaction the final book in this series.

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