‘Perfect’ confronts social issues with an interconnection of characters

Annie Yoskoski, Staff Writer

By tackling issues that stay in the shadows and are rarely confronted in such an honest, real way, Hopkins takes characters to new levels in her book “Perfect.” The reader feels like they know each character by the end.

The four main characters in “Perfect” interrelate with each other, but all have different ideas of perfection. Cara wants to get into Stanford University and be a perfect daughter. Sean wants to go to Stanford with Cara, but his fate is riding on his receipt of a baseball scholarship, with the help of steroids. Kendra wants nothing more than to be thin and succeed in modeling, while Andre wants to pursue an artistic career path no one in his family would approve of.Even if one has not personally dealt with these issues, I would bet that most know someone who has.

The interesting feature of Hopkins’ writing is that it is all prose. Instead of paragraphs and chapters Hopkins divides her work into five or six poems per character, switching between the main characters to view all sides of an event. The books are large and may look daunting, until you realize there are only thirty words per page.

When I first started reading Hopkins’s novels her poem style was hard to grasp but within the first twenty pages or so it is easier to see the flow of her writing. The structure of flipping from one character to another is also interesting. To avoid confusing the reader, it is always clearly marked and each character has a different font.

I love the way all the characters are interconnected, as well. In this case, Sean is dating Cara; Cara’s brother is the ex-boyfriend of Kendra, whose little sister is dating Andre. It sound much more complicated than it is, trust me.

I liked this book, despite the sometimes depressing issues that it brings up. Her style is as unique as her stories, making a book that is defiantly worth picking up.

Rating: 3.5/5