This title isn’t bragging | Cyn’s Book Review Perfect (Pretty Little Liars, #3)

By: Cynthia Ayala  

The third novel in the Pretty Little Liars series continues to build the suspense and mystery for one explosive cliffhanger.  A unique coming-of-age novel, Perfect truly delivered. 


Author: Sara Shepard

Published: August 21, 2007

Publisher: HarperTeen

Series: Pretty Little Liars

Genre: Mystery, Young Adult, Thriller, Suspense, Coming-of-Age

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 her sisters leftovers. And there is someone who knows these better than they know themselves. Someone calling themselves “A” is tormenting these girls with all their secrets, and unless they do as she says, their dirty laundry will finally see the light of day.

There is no denying that this novel is as good as the title because it is, hands down, undoubtedly the best of the series so far.

Perfect is the third novel in the Pretty Little Liars series by Sara Shepard.  Published on August 21 in 2007 by HarperTeen, the novel is a unique blend of the common coming-of-age genre with mystery, thriller and suspense, giving young adult readers everywhere something amazing to read and expanding their novel tastes.  The genres all weave together to build a story about four estranged friends in their junior year of high school who are pulled together by strange events that threaten their lives.

If it was even possible, this series get better with each novel.  Sara Shepard has an amazing talent with creating suspense, keeping the novel interesting as it moves forward telling the story of these young girls, not just being stalked by a unknown person claiming to be their very dead friend, but also being stalked by their deepest and darkest secrets that they have long since tried to bottle and bury.

So as the girls try to survive, there scandalous secrets are on the precipice, and are threatened to be exposed, unless they all do exactly what “A” says.  A game of Simon Says with disastrous consequences and should these characters step out of line, “A” is going to do exactly what she threatens.  “A” is a character who clearly does not bluff and in this novel, readers are finally able to see just what she is capable of, inspiring the readers to root for the four main girls, as they struggle with who they are and the choices they have made.

With all of that in mind, this was a truly captivating novel.  At each turn, the reader will be gasping at the unexpected turn of events because each twist in the plot will catch the reader off their guard.  The foreshadowing is used subtlety making the suspense in the novel even greater, and the reactions between the characters is presented in realistic manners that give the readers a reason to sympathize with each of these characters who are caught up in this frightening game of cat and mouse.  Readers are sympathetic to these characters, and they fear for them, hoping that they will survive whatever “A” throws at them.

Moreover, it’s because the characters are able to inspire such feelings from the readers that makes them amazing.  Even though the realm in which they live in is superficial and on the surface, as the titles suggest, the characters themselves seem superficial, the narrative that Shepard provides, shows that these characters have so much depth and are more than just pretty faces.  They each highlight what is wrong in the neighborhood, thus highlighting the negative aspects of society, as will as allowing the readers to have a different look at the other characters and giving this novel a realistic feel to it.

Simply a brilliant novel with amazing detail and characterization.  The suspense is killer and will make the reader forget the world outside of the novel.  ★★★★☆ (A+)

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