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You Asked for Perfect
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You Asked for Perfect
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For fans of Adam Silvera and Nina LaCour comes a timely novel about a teen's struggle when academic success and happiness pull him in opposite directions.Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college...
For fans of Adam Silvera and Nina LaCour comes a timely novel about a teen's struggle when academic success and happiness pull him in opposite directions.Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college...
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  • For fans of Adam Silvera and Nina LaCour comes a timely novel about a teen's struggle when academic success and happiness pull him in opposite directions.

    Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college applicant: first chair violinist, dedicated volunteer, active synagogue congregant, and expected valedictorian. And he works hard—really hard—to make his success look effortless. A failed calculus quiz is not part of his plan. Not when he's number one. Not when his peers can smell weakness like a freshman's body spray.

    Ariel throws himself into studying. His friends will understand if he skips a few plans, and he can sleep when he graduates. But as his grade continues to slide, Ariel realizes he needs help and reluctantly enlists a tutor, his classmate Amir. The two have never gotten along, but Ariel has no other options.

    Ariel discovers he may not like calculus, but he does like Amir. Except adding a new relationship to his long list of commitments may just push him past his limit.

About the Author-

  • Laura Silverman is a writer and editor. She loves books, dogs, and bubble baths. She currently lives in Brooklyn, NY. You can follow her on Twitter @LJSilverman1.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    January 1, 2019
    Ariel has always been a straight-A student, but now it's senior year.For this overachiever, that means taking a kajillion AP courses, practicing violin, and making everyone think he's a perfectionist to whom it all comes easy. But Ariel's dream of Harvard begins to waver when he fails a calculus quiz. Thankfully, Amir comes to the rescue by agreeing to tutor him. Gay Amir is Pakistani Muslim, and bisexual Ariel comes from an observant Jewish family; the boys have been in the same school for years and their families are friendly, but it is only now that they really notice--and quickly fall for--one another. With AP exams approaching, college applications due, a violin recital and numerous family events looming--not to mention Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur--Ariel begins to realize that effortless perfection requires quite a bit of effort after all. As their romance grows, Ariel finds himself unable to keep up with the various elements of his life: the stresses of school, romance, and family. Ultimately, he learns the importance of stepping back, seeking help, and admitting to weakness. Silverman (Girl Out of Water, 2017) writes a coming-of-age novel that will charm readers with its relatable and diverse characters, quirky storyline, and interweaving of faith, queerness, and the everyday lives of seniors navigating the pressures of college applications, grades, and relationships.Heartwarming and engaging. (Romance. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2019) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    February 1, 2019

    Gr 9 Up-At the start of senior year, Ariel is valedictorian, first chair violin, and a perfect Harvard applicant. Despite all that work, his road to the perfect future is getting bumpy. Unexpected struggles in AP calculus, bloody fingers from a new violin solo, more work and less sleep send Ariel into a spiral of panic and exhaustion. He certainly doesn't need a crush on his (secret) calculus tutor, Amir, to further complicate things. As pressure mounts and Ariel grows terrified that someone will learn of his inadequacies, he has to decide how far he'll go-and what he'll sacrifice-to be perfect. Silverman's book is a critical look at the growing academic pressures teens face and the ease with which adults overlook the well-being of high-performing kids. Ariel's struggles with high expectations and a competitive school environment (high achieving kids often trade in their lunch period for extra AP credits) are heartbreakingly relatable. His fear and embarrassment over being less than the best drive him deeper into dangerous habits and isolation. Ariel's turmoil is the undoubted heart of the novel, but his friends and family are rich, interesting characters on their own. Inclusion is celebrated on every page. Ariel is openly bisexual, his family is devoutly Jewish, his best friend is Korean, his love interest is Muslim. These things are all simply facts of the world, neither watered-down nor over-explained. VERDICT Highly recommended for teen collections, especially in competitive school environments.-Amy Diegelman, Chicago Public Library

    Copyright 2019 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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