You Asked for Perfect is an intensely relatable high school narrative that balances academic pressure with heartwarming romantic and familial relationships.
Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college applicant: first chair violin, dedicated community volunteer, and expected valedictorian. He works hard—really hard—to make his life look effortless. A failed Calculus quiz is not part of that plan. Not when he’s number one. Not when his peers can smell weakness like a freshman’s body spray.
Figuring a few all-nighters will preserve his class rank, Ariel throws himself into studying. His friends will understand if he skips a few plans, and he can sleep when he graduates. Except Ariel’s grade continues to slide. Reluctantly, he gets a tutor. Amir and Ariel have never gotten along, but Amir excels in Calculus, and Ariel is
out of options.
Ariel may not like Calc, but he might like Amir. Except adding a new relationship to his long list of commitments may just push him past his limit.
As I’m sure you can tell from my four-star rating, I really liked Laura Silverman’s latest novel! Here’s what I enjoyed about it:
This is a story about stress and high school and it’s so relatable and I think so many overachieving teens will be able to see themselves in it. It talks about putting too much pressure on yourself and worrying about your future. My current workload it actually very manageable for me, but I still related to so much that Ariel experiences in this book (just maybe on a smaller scale).
It was actually a little stressful to read sometimes, like I was vicariously getting stressed out, but it was worth it for me because the book is so good.
You Asked for Perfect explores many types of relationships, one of which is family. I loved seeing Ariel’s parents be so present in the book (for some reason I feel like parents in YA books are sometimes just nonexistent?), as well as his younger sister, Rachel. Their sibling relationship was so great and at times heartbreaking AND heartwarming.
Ariel and his love interest, Amir, are SO cute together. I loved how their families are friends and how they get together after working on studying for a math test together.
The book also has friendship vibes, which is another one of my favorite things to read about! Ariel has a few close friends (Sook and Malka) whom he sometimes plays music with, and I loved seeing his relationships with them change and grow over the course of the novel.
Another relationship that I found interesting to read about was Ariel’s interactions with his sort-of-frenemy/competitor, Pari.
Ariel and his family are Jewish (as is his friend Malka), and I really liked seeing how Ariel’s religion intersected with his daily life. His rabbi is so awesome, and I loved seeing his conversations with her as well.
🌿 Harry Potter references
All of the Harry Potter references (and general nerdiness) in this book made me so happy.
Also, side note: the characters in this book ship Harry and Cedric, which I’ve never heard of before, but now that I’ve read their opinions I can totally see it.
I just…really love this book cover okay.
Diversity Rep: bisexual and Jewish main character; POC, Muslim, and non-straight (I think gay?) major character; sapphic and Korean major character; multiple other POC and Jewish characters
Warnings: anxiety and stress; hospitalization for a psychosomatic response to anxiety; an almost-car accident; drug use
I really enjoyed You Asked for Perfect! Ariel could be a tad annoying at times, but I really felt for him, and I think lots of other people will too.
You can enter for the chance to win a copy of You Asked for Perfect HERE! (Make sure to enter before the giveaway closes on February 24th, 2019.)
INT as long as Bookdepository ships to the country of the winner.
You can find the schedule for the rest of the blog tour for this book here!
My debut novel, GIRL OUT OF WATER, is a summery coming-of-age story about a California surfer girl sent to landlocked Nebraska for the entire summer. It debuted in May 2017. You can order it from most book retailers and of course request it at your local library! My second novel, YOU ASKED FOR PERFECT, is about the effects of intense academic pressure on a teenage Valedictorian-to-be. It comes out March 2019, and you can add it on Goodreads here.
I have degrees in English and Advertising from the University of Georgia, and I have an MFA in Writing for Children from the New School. While I lived in NYC, I interned at Penguin and two different literary agencies. In addition to writing, I also freelance edit manuscripts and query letters. Please check out my services if you’re interested! I particularly love helping with those query letters!
Do you plan on reading You Asked for Perfect? Chat with me in the comments!
Thank you to Fantastic Flying Book Club for including me on the blog tour and for providing me with a review copy of this book! This in no way affected my review.