Author: Rachel Joyce
Publisher: Random House
Publish Date: January 14, 2014
Source: TLC Book Tours
Why You're Reading This Book:
- You like memorable characters.
- You like your stories off the beaten path.
From Goodreads.com: "On a foggy spring morning in 1972, twelve-year-old Byron Hemming and his mother are driving to school in the English countryside. On the way, in a life-changing two seconds, an accident occurs. Or does it? Byron is sure it happened, but his mother, sitting right next to him in the car, has no reaction to it. Over the course of the days and weeks that follow, Byron embarks on a journey to discover what really happened-or didn't-that fateful morning when everything changed. It is a journey that will take him-a loveable and cloistered twelve-year-old boy with a loveable and cloistered twelve-year-old boy's perspective on life-into the murkier, more difficult realities of the adult world, where adults lie, fathers and mothers fight without words, and even unwilling boys must become men. By the end, Byron will finally reconcile the dueling realities of that summer, a testament to the perseverance of the human spirit and the power of compassion."
My Two Cents:
"Perfect" is a quirky story about an 11 year old named Byron who becomes obsessed with the idea that two seconds will be added to the clock. He is fixated on this. In his mind, two seconds has the ability to change the course of his life and the lives of those around him. In this book, Byron finds out just how right he is. Those two seconds change so much for him and his family, especially his mother, Diana (but more about that later). This is a wholly original story with really great characters that I know that I will be thinking about long after I finished this book.
This story is very much character driven and I really enjoyed it for that reason. Byron definitely made this story great for me. I really thought the author did a fantastic job of bringing Byron to life. He is truly a three dimensional character. On one hand, Byron is wise beyond his years. He seems to know more about things and why they are the way they are and how they should be than his parents. On the other hand, he still is only 11 years old and therefore he is still very innocent about the way the world looks and relationships between the adults in the book.
I also really enjoyed Byron's mother's character, Diana. She was really interesting to me. Yes, she is the parental figure in the book. She is much more of a constant presence in Byron's life than his father. She is a very, very nervous person about both little and big things and this seems to rub off on Byron quite a bit. In a way, Byron seems to be parenting Diana in some situations. It was interesting to me to read the balance between these two characters.
Joyce is also the author of "The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry," which I have not read yet. After reading this book, I definitely want to go back and read it. Joyce is definitely a gifted storyteller. Overall, I really enjoyed this book!
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