Sarah Lewis wants to have a fresh start after a failed marriage and tragic event so brutal it motivates her to leave London and move back to where she grew up in South Africa. Sarah rekindles old friendships, meets new friends, and starts building a new home in South Africa. Suddenly something happens in her life that leads her to have to go back to London and she has to face the ghosts of her past and the hardships in her life she initially ran from.
**Full Disclosure: I have been sent a copy of Perfect Imperfections by the author and her publisher, Olympia Publishers for a honest review. This will have no impact on my final thoughts on the novel.**
I really enjoyed how easy it was to read this book. I don't read a lot of adult romance so I wasn't sure if Perfect Imperfections would hold my attention. However, I was interested from start to finish and although I had problems with some of the aspects of the book, I had a fun time reading.
First, some of the good things. The biggest thing I was happy with was that Sarah's friendship with Edward and Katy seemed very natural. I think their little moments really solidified their friendship and I had no problem believing that they had a past. Their characters flowed nicely and their friendship seemed very warm and welcoming. The scenes where Sarah was alone with Edward or Katy just one on one really worked also. The characters have distinct personalities and I think it was easy to picture them as friends who legitimately cared for each other. I also really like Sarah's character development. From the beginning of the book to the end her strength and self worth really develops and it's gradual and natural. I think it was one of the best parts of the book. I really enjoyed most of the characters. Even ones like Kevin and Annie. I think that Taryn Leigh is really good at writing characters.
However, I did have a few issues with this book. One of the things being that the dialogue is choppy and sometimes stiff. At times, but not always, it didn't feel like real people having a conversation. Because this book is almost completely a character driven plot, I think that good dialogue is essential so it definitely didn't work for me. Another problem of mine is that time jumps around quickly without much of a warning. All of a sudden Sarah will jump from one scene to another, or days will go by, and it seems to come out of nowhere. Like I said earlier, I enjoyed a lot of the characters, but one character I didn't like at all was Jake. He seemed to come out of nowhere, and they only have two or three scenes together and all of a sudden he's threatening to beat up people for Sarah and comforting her by kissing her on the forehead. They barely knew each other, so it really creeped me out. Especially since Sarah is known to have issues letting people into her heart, so it felt uncharacteristic for her to be okay with someone who is basically a stranger be so intimate with her.
Besides the problem with some of the dialogue, I think the writing is really well done. The settings were laid out nicely, the characters were easily distinguishable and mostly likable, and the story itself was gripping and suspenseful at times. I really like the author's choice to write the story in third person because I enjoyed being able to know what the other characters were thinking throughout the story.
Although I really liked the characters and their personalities, I had issues connecting with them and the story at times. I think that I had an issue connecting because they are 5-10 years older than me, and obviously they are all pretty well off. So it was hard to connect. And although I didn't need to connect to enjoy the story, it would have been nice. I think that is why I love the characters so much, because the author writes their friendships so seamlessly and it was one of the aspects of the story where I could relate.The main themes of this book, love, friendship, healing. Those were the moments where I could connect and what kept me reading.
One thing that is probably my most unpopular opinion when it comes to this book, which is unfortunate, is that I don't think Edward and Sarah have any romantic chemistry at all. I absolutely loved them as friends, and thought they were really sweet and charming. their connection with hot chocolate, him being supportive and protective over her, and the painting scene was really heartwarming. But I didn't feel like there was a spark for them romantically. Which is unfortunate, since you can tell early on that their relationship will develop. I think if they had more scenes together where they were more than friends, that could have helped a lot. I think if there was just more moments of them being more intimate romantically, especially by the end, it would be easier to believe the romance. I just didn't feel it, which is unfortunate because that's one of the big things the book is building to.
Overall, I enjoyed the read. I think this kind of book is the perfect summer beach read. There is suspense, friendship, wedding planning, tension, dark pasts, and new beginnings. I recommend it to anyone in the mood for some adult literature with dark pasts and romance. I am really glad I got the chance to read this book and I am so appreciative of the publisher and author for considering me to read Perfect Imperfections. I think that the author has a great talent for storytelling, and I would easily read another one of her books! I would also easily read more of Sarah and Edward's love story.