Monday, September 5, 2011

Past Perfect by Leila Sales Review

Past Perfect
By Leila Sales

Oct. 4, 2011
Simon Pulse, 320 pages
Source: Publisher

A summer job is exactly the distraction that Chelsea needs in order to finally get over Ezra, the boy who dumped her—and broke her heart to pieces—just a few weeks ago. 

So when Chelsea’s best friend, Fiona, signs them up for roles at Essex Historical Colonial Village, Chelsea doesn’t protest much, even though it means being surrounded by drama geeks and history nerds. Chelsea will do anything to forget Ezra. 

But when Chelsea and Fiona show up for their new jobs, they find out Ezra’s working there too. Maybe Chelsea should have known better than to think a historical reenactment village could help her escape her past—or maybe this summer is exactly what she needs for her future….

— description

Before I even talk about this fantastic book, can we discuss how my interests as a very young girl are affecting my current reading choices? I’m not talking teenage interests; I’m talking straight-up childhood. Mermaids? Obsessed. Jewel thefts? Couldn’t get enough of ’em.* Greek mythology? Bring it on! Think about how many of those themes are in the books I’m still reading and loving: Forgive My Fins, Heist Society, The Goddess Test, etc.

What does this have to do with this book about colonial reenactments? You’d think, “No, no 8-year-old would be into that.” WRONG.

Why, yes, that IS me.
When I was about 8 years old, my family took a trip to Colonial Williamsburg. I loved it so much I was a colonial girl for Halloween. It probably didn’t help my obsession that the “Felicity” American Girl books were really popular at the time.

Anyway, back to the point: Clearly, American Girl-wannabe me was born to love this book. It’s quirky and refreshing and lends itself to many hilarious and sticky situations, which are deftly executed by Leila Sales. And you don’t have to be a dork like me to enjoy it.

What I love so much about this author is that she’s able to take some pretty absurd and unlikely situations and make them seems so…normal. In the midst of all the wackiness of Essex Historical Colonial Village, she somehow captures the teenage experience perfectly. Her humor is spot-on, the romance is sweet and the girls are undeniably likable, despite their mistakes.

Bonus points, via Amazon: “Leila Sales had the idea for Past Perfect after working as a costumed Colonial guide on Boston's Freedom Trail.” Leila! Pictures, please!

Anna Reads young adult book blog

*I am aware that I was a strange child.


  1. Awh, how cute! This book sounds super fun and light. Glad you liked it! :) And nice anecdote of your trip to Williamsburg.

  2. SO CUTE, I have a picture of myself at 10 just like that from when I went to Williamsburg. And my American Girl was Kirsten, not really colonial but same time era (ish) so I was obsessed with all these costumes as well :D

  3. The cute factor here is high both from the book and the colonial you. Growing up in MA I have been to many many a re-enactment. I may have even been in the garb at some point myself! ;)

  4. you are ridiculously cute in your colonial get up!! also, i know right?!

  5. omgoodness! haha That is too cute. Loved this book SO MUCH.

  6. I wore a Felicity costume for one Halloween! I must get this book!

  7. hi! i follow your blog! i need to get this book, the cover is cute! i used to do that with the rain all the time lol

    just stopping by :) i have cool pics on mine today that remind me of dark YA.

  8. DUDE!! I was totally into Pioneer garb! :P I'm not actually going to admit to the most recent time I wore it either :P

    This book sounds like a lot of fun!


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