Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles

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. (Summary and Picture from Good Reads)

Rules of Attraction (Perfect Chemistry, #2)
*Spoilers if you haven't read Perfect Chemistry.  And why would you want to read a review of the second book in the series if you haven't read the first book?????  Go read Perfect Chemistry, it's worth it!*

I probably should not have read this right after Perfect Chemistry.  I was tired of gangs and Mexican boys with attitudes.  I should have read something a little lighter.  But instead I picked up the sequel and felt like I was reading the same book as Perfect Chemistry, a little.  All the same cockiness, drugs, gangs, troubled boy, girl trying to save him etc.  was all there.  Of course, it was written very differently and I have to give Simone Elkeles an A for effort for taking basically the same plot and putting a whole different cast of characters in it and twisting it around.  I honestly didn't see how she'd work this one out, but then that's why I'm not the writer.  She tied up all loose ends and gave us a glimpse into the future which was amusing.

As she did in Perfect Chemistry, the chapters alternated between the two main characters Carlos, Alex's middle brother and Kiara, the daughter of Alex's old psychology professor and Carlos just happens to be staying in his house after he gets in some trouble at school.  As far as character development goes it seems to me that everything is a problem for Carlos.  Whether he's at school, in the REACH program, with his brother or with Kiara.  He seems to only let down his guard when he plays with Brandon, Kiara's little brother.  He is constantly worried.  It takes the joy out of his life and out of the time he spends with anyone.  Kiara on the other hand doesn't seem to worry about anything.  She just seems to have an "Oh Well," attitude about everything.  It's not believable.  I didn't feel attached to either character so I didn't really get emotionally attached to the story.  However, that did not detract from my enjoyment of the story.  And I loved the descriptions of the mountains as Alex was driving Carlos into Boulder from the airport.  I tried to stay up all night to finish this one, but my tired eyes just wouldn't let me.  It will definitely capture your attention and reel you in right from the beginning, despite it being similar to Perfect Chemistry.  There's just something about those Fuentes boys.  You have to know what's going to happen to them.  And you hope for the best for them.  I can't wait to read Luis' story, Chain Reaction coming up in August.

Heather in Sandwich


  1. You are right, it seems like a similar plot to Perfect Chemistry and it took me some time to get into this story. Still, I liked it and I LOVE her happy endings, she has a way for the perfectly happily ever after...

    I'm curious to read Chain Reaction, from the plot it sounds like this one could be different!

  2. Danny-

    I'm with you. I can't wait to see how good boy Luis handles a bad girl! This should be an interesting story. Still, gotta love those Fuentes boys. And your HEAS.


  3. Wow, this is just like the first one from what I can tell in your (awesome) review.

    The plot for Chain Reaction sounds much more appealing to me with the girl from the "wrong side of the tracks." Good job Heather. :)


  4. Kelsa- Hope you had a better day! It is very similar to Perfect Chemistry. The trouble aspect is different and of course living under the same roof with the girl you like is unique. But then the gang trouble and the chip on his shoulder etc. was all there. Kiara's parents played a big part in this story. They were very hands on in this one. So that was very different.

    But you're right I can't wait for the bad girl book! Don't get to read too many of those!



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