on September 14, 2015
How far will you go for perfection?For “Perfect Paige” Westfield, today is “D” Day. As in, she just got one on her calculus test. With her dreams of Stanford, her reputation, and her parents’ expectations at stake, Paige needs to find a way to save face before everything she’s worked for goes up in flames.Ben Franklin (yes, he’s related) is from the wrong side of town, with the wrong clothes and the wrong kind of life. He also knows an opportunity when he sees one, and he’ll be happy to tutor Paige—if she makes him into the kind of guy her best friend, the hottest girl in school, will date.It’s the perfect arrangement. And Paige is determined not even the inconvenient—and utterly imperfect—attraction simmering between her and Ben will ruin it…
Paige knows the plan: get straight As, be the top of her class, and be accepted into Stanford’s premed program. Only, today is the worst day of her life, because today she got a D. A D—some of the worst news “Perfect Paige” has ever had thrust into her hands. Then Benjamin Franklin—no, not the Founding Father—comes to her rescue. If she agrees to set him up with her best friend, Zoey, no matter how impossible the feat, he’ll tutor her for free. Even though she’s not excited about the idea, she agrees, and thus begins a long and winding road of asymptotes and attraction.
This book got my attention immediately as I perused NetGalley one day. The cover, the synopsis all had me intrigued and pressing the request button. I have read another one of Highley’s books, Unstrung, but because it’s so different than that book—dystopian versus contemporary romance—I didn’t realize until later that I had already read something of hers. She did a masterful job of creating these characters, giving them each strong personalities and traits. I could easily picture myself in this town, with these characters, and, as a high-strung person, in this situation.
I’ve always been someone who stressed about grades and would be broken if I received anything lower than a B—until I took physics last semester, but that’s another story—so I found it incredibly easy to relate to Paige. She was the girl that nearly drowned under all her responsibilities and expectations, leaving no time for her social life—she left that all to Zoey. Highley did a great job creating a tenuous relationship with Paige and her parents. The more I learned about them, the more I loved her dad but couldn’t stand her mom. The story was a growing experience for every influential character, and her parents were no different.
Benjamin Fisher Franklin—I had to tell you his full name, just so you could think about his initials (it’s mentioned in the book). Unfortunately, Ben had always been the guy who got friend zoned, the one that would peak in a few years and make girls gasp and think “Where was he during high school?” Don’t we all hope to snag up that guy? I don’t think I’ve ever wanted a fictitious character to be more real than I did Ben and for me to be in Paige’s position—getting surprise batches of cookies and endless compliments. Please hold while I go wish upon a star for Ben to magically appear at my doorstep (my favorites are white chocolate macadamia nut). Their love story was so wonderful, because you could tell they had an automatic attraction from the beginning. The story focuses on them getting together, which made it unique—there wasn’t another love interest standing in the way, only the powers that be.
Tell me there’s a sequel, pretty please? I want to go back to this world. The epilogue gives me hope that I’ll be seeing more of these characters, especially Zoey. Kendra Highley has given us all another love story to swoon over and vainly wish we were the ones living it.