Review: Perfect Couple by Jennifer Echols

Series: Superlatives #2

perfect couple -jennifer echolsPerfect Couple is #2 in the Superlatives series about seniors at a Florida high school who are selected for their class’s superlative categories in the yearbook, and how the labels change the way they view themselves and alter the course of their lives.

Can your heart be put to a popular vote?

As yearbook photographer, Harper is responsible for capturing those candid moments that make high school memorable. But her own life is anything but picture perfect. Her parents’ bitter divorce has left her wondering what a loving relationship would look like. And ever since the senior class voted her and star quarterback Brody the “Perfect Couple That Never Was,” her friends have been on her case to ask Brody out.

Brody doesn’t lack in female admirers, but Harper can’t see herself with him. He seems confused about why they were matched together, too. They’re total opposites—the last people in the world who would ever be compatible, let alone the “perfect couple.” Yet ever since the class paired the two of them, they’ve found themselves drawn together–first by curiosity, then by an undeniable bond.

The trouble is, though they’re very attracted to each other and both of them admit this, they have a hard time getting along or even communicating clearly. If they’re the perfect couple, this shouldn’t be so difficult! Soon it becomes clear their class was wrong, and they throw in the towel. But after they walk away, both of them feel so changed from making the effort that they can’t forget each other. What if that means this match made in hell is the perfect couple after all?

2.5 Drink Me Potions

I had a lot higher hopes for Perfect Couple after reading its predecessor, Biggest Flirts. Cute and slightly erratic football player paired up with the yearbook photographer who’s his total opposite in every way? Sounds intriguing with a room full of potentially sweet moments in the plot.

It didn’t really happen that way.

First off, I’ve never really read any of Jennifer Echols’ writing before this series. I can honestly say, it may just be her writing style that doesn’t quite mix well with me.

Oh, and the anti-climatic way she ends her books. This is 2 of 2 so far where I felt the end could’ve gone better. It left me with this dissatisfied taste in my mouth. The way the two protagonists, Brody and Harper, had ‘got back together’ after their big fight within like, 20 pages or less because that was where the book ended, was so rushed. Honestly. Suddenly everything was okay again between them? That was the question floating through my head the moment I realized I had reached the last page. Followed by “And then what?!” . How are they going to be able to work out their obvious differences THIS time? I wouldn’t know…at least until I read the next book I guess.

I did feel a little happier that the tension between the protagonists of Biggest Flirts were somewhat smoothed out in this book. At least there was the resolution I had wanted to see at the END of the PREVIOUS book. Was it too much to ask that it would’ve been placed in a book where those characters were actually central to the plot? I sure hope not. So this little taste of their new relationship there helped quench something at least.

What I will give kudos to Echols for is the ability to create such flawed characters. Brody isn’t necessarily some sweet and charming popular boy who suddenly would do anything for the shy and slightly quirky girl he’s falling for. Nope. Not that kind of Prince Charming ideal here. He has no concerns at all for his own safety, tending to dive head in to any situation without too much thought about it. He also doesn’t “cheat” on girls because he doesn’t quite consider himself with any girl. So he can do whatever he wants and not feel bad about it.

Harper was a quirky in the beginning, wearing retro-style glasses and clothes that she handsewn together for herself. Then over time, she starts wearing more “normal” clothes like a t-shirt and shorts or a bikini and contacts to…I’m not sure still. To impress Brody? That was the rumour around school, but I don’t even know why she ended up sticking to her new style. It’s not that I don’t like her change in fashion sense, but Echols didn’t make her as the kind of protagonist who’d ALWAYS be a little unique. Harper wasn’t perfect either, even if it meant changing a little of what she thought made her her and into something more like the other girls.

Either way, I think it’s nice to see imperfect characters come to realize their imperfections and work it out together. I think the storyline could’ve gone better and definitely come up with a better ENDING. Other than that, it was an average book in a genre that is full of similar plots that were probably executed better.

Overall Recommendations:
Possibly going into the book with far too high of an expectation, Perfect Couple isn’t a story where two total opposites magically find themselves falling for each other. Echols kept it realistic with two rather flawed characters trying to figure out if they were meant to be when they had such HUGE differences in their way.

It wasn’t a perfect book, nor was the ending satisfactory at all. It felt way too rushed, like Echols wanted to get rid of the climax and quickly complete the story on a somewhat happy note. There just wasn’t any true resolution of the problems that Brody and Harper faced. The plot could’ve been written better. Either way, I can say I’m not a huge fan of Jennifer Echols’ writing style, but the book was still somewhat enjoyable for an idle afternoon of reading.

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