Monday, June 7, 2010

Review; Rules of Attraction by Simone Elkeles

Rules of Attraction – Simone Elkeles


If you loved Alex Fuentes, wait until you meet his brother Carlos…

Carlos Fuentes idolized his older brother, Alex, when he was a member of the Latino Blood. So when Alex chose to get jumped out of the gang for a chance at a future with his gringa girlfriend, Brittany, Carlos felt shocked and betrayed. Even worse, Alex forced Carlos to come back from Mexico to join him on the straight and narrow path. Trouble is, Carlos just wants to keep living on the edge. And ties to his Mexican gang aren’t easy to break, even hundreds of miles away in Colorado.

In Boulder, Carlos has to live with one of Alex’s college professors – and he feels completely out of place. He’s even more thrown by his strong feelings for the professor’s daughter, Kiara, who is nothing like the girls he’s usually drawn to. But Carlos and Kiara soon discover that in matters of the heart, the rules of attraction overpower the social differences that conspire to keep them apart.

Review; Carlos was absolutely hilarious, right from the first page. He cracked me up, but don’t get me wrong – man, he was a jackass in the beginning! But that was a big draw card for yet another brilliant Simone Elkeles novel, as watching Carlos grow and let go of his past preconceptions was liberating for both the characters and the reader.

I loved Kiara as the heroine. She was what a good part of YA heroines aren’t; unfashionable, selfless and she didn’t throw her hands up in the air and give up on Jackass-Carlos. Although, at times, I almost wished she would…but about half way through the book I was glad she was so kind and patient, because we starting seeing glimpses of Sweet-Carlos! She was very easy to relate to, because we didn’t get the “Oh, my figure is so straight and slim, poor me,” LOL, she was a normal girl – just like the hundreds of us that have already read this book. Both Carlos and Kiara were flawed, real individuals, adding to the realism of this book.

I also adored the appearance of Alex and Brittany again (though just about screamed when they had their “hiccup”…you’ll see what I mean!). And Nick is also a great addition as Kiara’s best friend.

Rules of Attraction is another fantastic exploration of teenage love – the ups, the downs, the twists and turns, all set against Carlos’s Mexican heritage and the looming climax with the drug lords. I go into Elkeles’s novels now knowing that my heart can go from pounding to steady and back again, but there will always be hope and happiness in the ending. And I’m a real sucker for happy endings which is why I love Elkeles’s epilogues :-D

If you loved Perfect Chemistry as much as I did, and have possibly had doubts about reading Rules of Attraction because the sequel may not live up to the first, stop procrastinating, get off your butt, and go grab a copy. It’s funny, sweet, dangerous and daring – everything the first novel was and maybe just a little more! I promise personally that if you like the first one, you’ll finish the second one with a huge dopey grin on your face :-D


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