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Past Perfect by Leila Sales

The last thing that Chelsea wants to do is spend yet another summer working at Essex Historical Colonial Village, like she’s done for basically as long as she can remember. That’s what happens when both your parents are colonial reenactors. But summer rolls around, and Chelsea finds herself back at Essex, because her best friend Fiona would rather hone her skills for the dramatic instead of relax in a cozy, air-conditioned job at the mall. To make matters worse, guess who else Chelsea gets to work with? Her ex-boyfriend Ezra, who Chelsea is not quite over even months after their breakup. Chelsea knows that obsessing about Ezra will lead to no good, so she distracts herself by focusing on the war between the Essex colonial reenactors and the civil war reenactors across the street. But when she finds herself falling for a guy on the wrong side of enemy lines, Chelsea knows she in a whole new world of trouble.

Past Perfect is a novel that is many things: sweet, thoughtful, romantic, and outrageously hilarious. I was drawn to this story because of its unique premise of a struggle between reenactors of different time periods, but what really kept me reading was Chelsea’s voice. I loved how funny she could be, but I also greatly appreciated her more contemplative moments; the balance between these two made her feel like a much more realistic and believable character. It was interesting to see how her relationships with the other characters in the book evolved, especially as Chelsea matured. I also really liked how the importance of history, whether personal histories or those from long ago, was interwoven into Chelsea’s story. This was perhaps not quite as seamless as it could have been, but regardless, it gives readers a lot to think about. And that makes this funny and thoroughly entertaining novel even better.

Past Perfect is sure to be enjoyed by fans of Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpern and My Life Undecided by Jessica Brody.

Rating: 4.25

Review copy from Simon & Schuster Galley Grab

2 munch(es) :

Ashley said...

Oh I so agree! This book was just so incredibly fun & cute! I totally loved it and I'm glad that you did too! :D

holdenj said...

I just read this too and liked it a lot!

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