Better than Perfect by Melissa Kantor
About: Juliet Newman has it all. A picture-perfect family; a handsome, loving boyfriend; and a foolproof life plan: ace her SATs, get accepted into Harvard early decision, and live happily ever after.
But when her dad moves out and her mom loses it, Juliet begins questioning the rules she’s always lived by. And to make everything even more complicated there’s Declan, the gorgeous boy who makes her feel alive and spontaneous–and who’s totally off-limits. Torn between the life she always thought she wanted and one she never knew was possible, Juliet begins to wonder: What if perfect isn’t all it’s cracked up to be?
Anna’s thoughts: I really enjoyed the different aspects of Juliet’s life and reading about her different relationships. She is a character who is very easy to relate to and then empathize with. Melissa Kantor did a fabulous job creating and explaining all of the characters in the book; I could imagine a spinoff with Sofia, Juliet’s best friend, as the protagonist.
I found the storyline about the mother to be the most interesting and Juliet’s arguments with her boyfriend to be the most annoying. I caught myself thinking that hopefully she and her boyfriend just started this type of bickering and that she hadn’t dealt with it for four years just because she wanted the perfect boy.
Overall, I thought the story was very intriguing and actually liked that the end was slightly open for interpretation. Usually, if a book is not in a series, I hate cliffhangers but because Juliet’s life has always been so planned out, I found it fitting that a small bit of the ending left you wondering what she may do next.