Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Past Perfect by Leila Sales

Past Perfect by Leila Sales
(Goodreads profile)

Source: S&S Galley Grab
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: October 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 322
  All Chelsea wants to do this summer is hang out with her best friend, hone her talents as an ice cream connoisseur, and finally get over Ezra, the boy who broke her heart. But when Chelsea shows up for her summer job at Essex Historical Colonial Village (yes, really), it turns out Ezra’s working there too. Which makes moving on and forgetting Ezra a lot more complicated…even when Chelsea starts falling for someone new.
Maybe Chelsea should have known better than to think that a historical reenactment village could help her escape her past. But with Ezra all too present, and her new crush seeming all too off limits, all Chelsea knows is that she’s got a lot to figure out about love. Because those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it….

What a fun book!

Right off the bat, I was enchanted by this adorable novel. The main character's snarky attitude (albeit mostly in her head) made me laugh and I thought the setting of the historical reenactment village was spectacular. What might have been just another story of a girl dealing with first-time heartbreak and finding new love was spun into an entertaining ride through history and humour.

Chelsea was a great narrator for this novel. She manages to pull off the dramatic, love-induced teenage angst without coming across as too desperate or annoying (most of the time anyway) and her thoughts did just make me smile in general. I really liked the relationship she had with her best friend, Fiona. Actually, perhaps it's unfair of me to say that since I was sold on their friendship the minute I read of their aspirations to become ice cream connoisseurs, but I digress.

The romance between Chelsea and Dan was adorable. In the beginning, they were both more wary of falling for each other because, hello, these kids are at WAR - think Montagues and Capulets with historical reenactment villages and you'll get the idea. I found the war a fun and unique way of having starcrossed lovers in a contemporary setting without going overboard. As for the relationship between Chelsea and Dan, I was cheering them on from start to finish.

I cannot leave without mentioning once again how much I loved the setting of this novel. The atmosphere was just different inside the village, and I only wish we could have seen more of that. Seriously, if Chelsea's job was available near me, you can bet that I would be applying for it (I'm the Type 2 applicant, for those that have read the book).

Read this novel if you're searching for cute contemporary (I for one am always on the lookout) or if you like history woven into your plots.

Cover Comments: Cute! If Chelsea sticking her tongue out as if to lick ice cream like I suspect (really, what else would she be doing?)... double cute! I would have liked to see Chelsea in her Colonial Village get-up though.



  1. Essex? That's in England, isn't it? Then how is it colonial?...I must have missed something in history class!

    It sounds like a cute, fun read. :)

  2. It might be a city in the US - TONS of US cities are named after towns and cities in Europe, so it wouldn't surprise me. :)

    Anyway, this book sounds adorable, and the hysterically cute cover drew me in the first time I saw it on another blog. Can't wait to read this one!

  3. You had me at snarky MC! I really am excited to read this. My ink and paper diet is totally craving more contemp (and maybe some ice cream) and I love those cut, fun, romantic reads. Added perk of history in the plot? WIN WIN WIN!

    Must go stalk S&S AU and see if they're publishing here! Fantastic review!

  4. Yaaay you liked it! Aren't you happy you read it now? Instead of doing all that boring homework? :P. I agree that the setting was just amazing! And Chelsea and Dan were hilarious together. Great review :).

  5. What a cute cover...and pulling off a romance like that without descending into the treacly sweet stuff is hard to do, but so welcome when the author pulls it off.

  6. *waves like crazy*

    Heeeey! Great book review :) I really want to read this cute book even more now! I had no idea it had a bit of history in it. Sounds really cute and fun!

    ♥ Trish
    Just a YA Girl

  7. She wants to be an ice cream connoisseur? That much, plus the "Historical Colonial Village" aspect, makes me want to look into this -- it sounds kind of quirky, which I like. Nice review!