Title: No Such Thing as Perfect
Author: Sarah Daltry
Publication date: December 11th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
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Synopsis: College was supposed to be perfect. She was supposed to be perfect.
For Lily Drummond, life is about following the rules. To be specific, her mother’s rules. College fit into the plan – maintain perfect grades, date the perfect guy, and live the perfect life. On her own, though, Lily realizes that she doesn’t actually have a plan. Without being told what to think and do, she keeps making mistakes.
Away from home, the perfect facade is beginning to shatter. When Lily herself starts to break, it’s the support of an unlikely friend that teaches her how much of a lie perfect really is – and how to be whole on her own terms.
No Such Thing as Perfect was inspired by Sarah's Flowering series, but it stands completely alone as its own title. The same characters appear and some situations are similar, but this was written with a different goal in mind. There is NO on-camera sex in this novel and it is not a "romance" novel by most standards, but a story of growing up and being okay with who you are.
For more info, visit Sarah's website
Review: I've been a huge fan of Sarah Daltry's books since I stumbled across Backward Compatible, and when I heard she was writing a new book inspired by her Flowering series, I knew I had to read it. And while I really liked the Flowering series, I'm so glad that No Such Thing as Perfect came out of it, because I think this is the story that was aching to get out and be heard.
Although Lily's experiences were not entirely my own, there were parts of her life that I could completely understand. I was lucky in that I had friends and family supporting my decisions and not holding me to ridiculous standards, but I know what it's like to be afraid of failing. I've known people who are terrified of disappointing their parents or who refuse to let go of the past and can't see the present for what it is. I felt for Lily throughout this whole book, and most of the time I just wanted to give her a huge hug and be there for her.
I'm not huge on contemporary realistic YA. I mean, I know there's a place for it and I know a lot of people enjoy it, but I'd rather lose myself in a fantasy world than have to read about the problems that run rampant in this world. But Sarah's writing is captivating and drew me in from the first sentence, and I found that I couldn't put this book down. I stayed up well past my bed time, wanting to know what was going to happen next in Lily's life. I had to know if she could break through her chains and be her own person.
This is a very character driven book, and it was nice to read something that wasn't so heavily focused on plot. I very much enjoyed getting to know Lily, Jack, and Alana, and I'm really hoping that we get to learn the rest of their stories soon. I did not enjoy getting to know Derrick, and I'm glad that things happened the way they did. I know he was important in Lily's story and her growing up, but I hope we never have to see him again. He's basically the worst. Ugh. Just thinking about him makes me angry.
If you enjoy contemporary YA, I think you'll really enjoy this book. Sarah's writing is just so fluid and beautiful, and the words become reality as they draw you into the page. I am so glad that No Such Thing as Perfect is out there in the world, because I think it can help give voice to some of the problems that many young girls face and help them to know that they are not alone. Go grab your copy ASAP! You won't regret it. 5/5.