Perfect Escape by Jennifer Brown
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Release Date: July 10th, 2012
Kendra has always felt overshadowed by her older brother, Grayson, whose OCD forces him to live a life of carefully coordinated routines. The only way Kendra can stand out next to Grayson is to be perfect, and she has perfection down to an art -- until a cheating scandal threatens her flawless reputation.
Behind the wheel of her car, with Grayson asleep beside her, Kendra decides to drive away from it all -- with enough distance, maybe she'll be able to figure everything out. But eventually, Kendra must stop running and come to terms with herself, her brother, and her past.
With undeniable grace and humor, acclaimed author Jennifer Brown explores OCD, the pressure for perfection, and the emotional highs and lows of a complex sibling relationship.
I’d heard fantastic reviews of this book before I ever picked it up. So, naturally, my expectations were pretty high for Perfect Escape. And while some of my expectations were definitely met with this book, something prevented me from falling head over heels in love with this book like I thought I was going to.
I’ve said this many times in different reviews, but I’ll say it again: I love when family relationships are talked about in books. In this case, the book mainly focuses on sibling relationships. I can count on one hand the number of books I’ve read about sibling relationships. So it was great to see how the characters grew and changed and came to terms with life. Having a sibling that’s really close to me in age, I could definitely relate with the whole concept of being in a sibling’s shadow.
The characters were also pretty well done. Kendra was definitely relatable, although she wasn’t exactly likable at all times. Grayson, however, was wonderfully done, I believe. I loved the OCD aspect he had to him, it’s so interesting to see what OCD actually is. The word OCD is thrown around a lot at school, but it’s never used seriously, so it was completely intriguing to see what this condition actually is. There were also some other great supporting characters that added some more depth to the story.
However, there was just something not likable about this book. I think one of the major things that prevented me from falling in love with this book was that it was very character-driven. There wasn’t exactly a plot, and nothing really happened. I’m sure some people prefer those types of books, but I like my books filled with intrigue and action, and while I wasn’t expecting any action or anything, I wish this book would have been able to hook me a little more.
Also, I was really back and forth with Kendra, our main character. She made up her mind, then unmade it, then made it up again over and over again. I related with her on a few aspects, but other than that, she just wasn’t likable. If she had been a bit kinder,more personable, or more open, I’m sure I would have fallen in love with her. Especially since Kendra and I are actually really alike, as it seems to be.
Overall, Perfect Escape was a deep story about sibling relationships, something I believe is neglected in Young Adult books. Grayson, and the light shed on OCD was also really intriguing to read about. However, I wasn’t a fan of the slow plot and with our main character, Kendra. If you are looking for a deep contemporary about sibling relationships, and you don’t mind reading a slow book, then you should definitely pick this one up!