Goodbye, Perfect
When I was wild, you were steady . . . Now you are wild - what am I? Eden McKinley knows she can’t count on much in this world, but she can depend on Bonnie, her solid, steady, straight-A best friend. So it’s a bit of a surprise when Bonnie runs away with the boyfriend Eden knows nothing about five days before the start of their GCSEs. Especially when the police arrive on her doorstep and Eden finds out that the boyfriend is actually their music teacher, Mr Cohn.Sworn to secrecy and bound by loyalty, only Eden knows Bonnie’s location, and that’s the way it has to stay. There’s no way she’s betraying her best friend. Not even when she’s faced with police questioning, suspicious parents and her own growing doubts.As the days pass and things begin to unravel, Eden is forced to question everything she thought she knew about the world, her best friend and herself.

Goodbye, Perfect Details

TitleGoodbye, Perfect
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseFeb 8th, 2018
PublisherMacmillan Children's Books
ISBN-139781509852864
Rating
GenreContemporary, Young Adult, Young Adult Contemporary

Goodbye, Perfect Review

  • Laura
    January 1, 1970
    “I don’t think you can ever really start over. Because if you’re trying to do that, you’re basically trying to run away from yourself. And you can’t. You’re stuck with you, forever. Wherever you go.” I can’t not read a book written by Sarah Barnard. She has this honest, realistic way of telling a story. It’s brilliant. Even when the topic of the story isn’t something I’d usually want to read, I know to give it a try anyway because her writing will floor me. Seriously… A Quiet Kind of Thunder i “I don’t think you can ever really start over. Because if you’re trying to do that, you’re basically trying to run away from yourself. And you can’t. You’re stuck with you, forever. Wherever you go.” I can’t not read a book written by Sarah Barnard. She has this honest, realistic way of telling a story. It’s brilliant. Even when the topic of the story isn’t something I’d usually want to read, I know to give it a try anyway because her writing will floor me. Seriously… A Quiet Kind of Thunder is wonderful. The people that you let into your life are a choice, and sometimes that choice changes. This is the story about a girl (Bonnie) who runs away with her boyfriend, the school music teacher. Told from the perspective of the best friend, Eden, who had no clue her friend’s boyfriend was a teacher. Eden does, however, have contact with Bonnie, but is sworn to secrecy. When the police & Bonnie’s mother show up looking for answers, Eden is torn between her loyalty to her best friend and telling everyone where Bonnie is. A promise is a promise, and a best friend is a best friend. While it is usually a bit off-putting reading about a relationship between student and teacher because these things are usually romanticized. This is a unique take being that it's from the perspective of an outsider viewing the relationship for the first time, as opposed to getting Bonnie’s perspective which would have resulted in (at least) moments of romanticizing the situation. We are viewing the relationship for what it actually is. I also liked that newspaper articles were included throughout to reveal the public image/opinion of what is going on.It may seem frustrating to have Eden not tell the police & Bonnie's mom where she is immediately, but then we wouldn't exactly have a book. Eden has to make the wrong decision for there to be a story here. Sometimes we just want to scream at the main character to wake up! But I think that’s where the rest of the story comes in. There is a lot more going on besides this, although Bonnie's story is at the forefront. There’s the commentary on friendship and loyalty as Eden struggles with what is actually right in this situation. Not to mention, Eden was adopted with her younger sister into a family and has interesting ideas on family. I especially enjoyed reading about her relationship with Valerie, her adopted sister, & how she would constantly compare herself to Valerie from their parents’ eyes.It is worth mentioning that I think this story was written honestly regarding the subject matter. I was the best friend of the girl who got in a relationship with our high school teacher. It was odd. But things in these pages ring true. You aren’t exactly privy to the knowledge as it occurs. I did not realize who Daniel was for the longest time because I did not know my teacher by that name. Anyway..not my story to tell. I did see similarities in the situations and could understand the POV of the best friend to an extent.There are a lot of things I wish had been explored more. Like Eden & Daisy’s adoption, their relationship with their birth mom. Connor & his role as caretaker. Etc. I still enjoyed the story overall. When compared to Barnard’s last book, I enjoyed that one more. But this is still a lovely YA contemporary novel with strong characters.
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  • Maddie (Heart Full Of Books)
    January 1, 1970
    I've been really delayed in writing my review for this seeing as I finished it at the end of last week, but I was hoping that if I left it for long enough and I mulled over 'Goodbye, Perfect' I'd love it as much as I did Sara Barnard's other books. Unfortunately, that's not the case.I knew nothing about the plot before I started reading, which was definitely a good thing because if I'd have known it was about a student-teacher relationship, I probably wouldn't have picked it up - not matter who I've been really delayed in writing my review for this seeing as I finished it at the end of last week, but I was hoping that if I left it for long enough and I mulled over 'Goodbye, Perfect' I'd love it as much as I did Sara Barnard's other books. Unfortunately, that's not the case.I knew nothing about the plot before I started reading, which was definitely a good thing because if I'd have known it was about a student-teacher relationship, I probably wouldn't have picked it up - not matter who wrote it. The relationship is one of my most hated buzzwords. Luckily, it's from the perspective of the girl who's best friend is groomed, delusional and 'in love' with her music teacher, which made it more manageable and definitely had me questioning the strength of loyalty in the face of a criminal offence. My opinion was very firm. Even if Bonnie is Eden's best friend, she doesn't know how much danger she's in so Eden needed to tell the police everything. And while I was sympathetic to the difficult situation Eden was in for the first fifty pages, I couldn't deal with the same thought processes throughout the whole book. How this book managed to feel so long winded (slow paced and - dare I say it? - dull) at just over 300 pages is beyond me.The saving grace of the book for me was Eden's relationship with Valerie, her older sister that she struggled to bond with when she was first adopted, and Eden's boyfriend Connor who was just an all around great guy. (Having a character in YA be in a committed relationship before the book began and NOT have any drama surrounding that relationship during the narrative was so refreshing!) These characters were both most prominent in the last fifty pages of the book where things started to get interesting for the first time. Another thing that kept me reading despite feeling like I wasn't getting enough out of the story was the newspaper inserts and text message exchanges. I was just waiting for what ridiculously warped thing Bonnie was going to say about how happy she was to be with Jack (ugh.) I love that multi-media is becoming more and more prominent in YA, at least! There were also a lot of things happening in the background of this story that were super interesting but not developed enough for me. For example, Eden's little sister Daisy and her descent into being a young troublemaker/following the path of Eden from years ago. Or the fact that Connor was a young carer for his mother. Or the relationship Eden had with her birth mother. Or Eden's identity as biracial (with a Brazilian father). All of these things could have added a little zest to a story that was too consumed by Bonnie running away. Also, (rant incoming) I'm never a fan of narratives that make a straight-A student/generally 'good' girl feel like she's missing out on the 'teenage experience' (which doesn't exist!) Being a teenager isn't a check list of underage drinking and disrespecting your authority figures. I was told this way too much by people in secondary school that made fun of me thinking a nice evening consisted of watching Call the Midwife and knitting. Just because Bonnie cared about her exam results, that doesn't make her boring or not worthy of her story being told. Overall, this book gets 2.5 stars from me and I'm beyond disappointed that I can't call this Sara Barnard's best book yet. But she's still one of my all-time favourite YA authors and I'll just keep my fingers crossed that her next book is more my thing.
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  • Kate (GirlReading)
    January 1, 1970
    3.5* Sara Barnard's writing is incredibly easy to read and impossible not to fly through. It's full of emotion, fantastic messages and interesting characters. Although I definitely didn't enjoy this as much as 'A Quiet Kind of Thunder' (which was one of my favourite reads of 2017) 'Goodbye, Perfect' didn't lack any of these things. It was so refreshing to read a book with a student/teacher plot that didn't romanticise it in any way. I also loved and appreciated how Sara Barnard tackled the topic 3.5* Sara Barnard's writing is incredibly easy to read and impossible not to fly through. It's full of emotion, fantastic messages and interesting characters. Although I definitely didn't enjoy this as much as 'A Quiet Kind of Thunder' (which was one of my favourite reads of 2017) 'Goodbye, Perfect' didn't lack any of these things. It was so refreshing to read a book with a student/teacher plot that didn't romanticise it in any way. I also loved and appreciated how Sara Barnard tackled the topic from the outside, looking in. Rather than from the view of those in the relationship. It gave a new and much needed perspective to this narrative and therefore didn't give such a problematic relationship (e.g a 15yr old & nearly 30yr old teacher) reasoning and excuses. I did find a few of the main character and their actions frustrating at times but in the context of the plot, although I'm not justifying them, I do somewhat understand their mindset (excluding the teacher because just, nah. There are no excuses.)I thought the underlying exploration of the pressure and stress exams put on young people and how vulnerable it can make them, even to the point of being dangerous, was also absolutely fantastic and something I'd love to push into the government's faces. 😅 That being said, my favourite part of this whole book was without a doubt the established, unwavering relationship between Eden and Connor. It was so lovely to read and something I so rarely see in YA and Connor is an absolute sweetheart! Although I didn't enjoy Goodbye, Perfect as much as I'd hoped to, it was nevertheless a thought provoking, enjoyable read and one I'm glad I got the chance to pick up.
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  • Sophie Elaina
    January 1, 1970
    This book was a very thought provoking read and is one of those books that both while you're reading and afterwards you just can't out of your head. I think it's because I found the whole situation kind of disturbing and it was really hard to read at times. I was actually very surprised by how hard it hit me. It was a strong story that represents very real things that have actually happened. Things that need to be talked about more in society today. Sara Barnard is one of very few authors who ha This book was a very thought provoking read and is one of those books that both while you're reading and afterwards you just can't out of your head. I think it's because I found the whole situation kind of disturbing and it was really hard to read at times. I was actually very surprised by how hard it hit me. It was a strong story that represents very real things that have actually happened. Things that need to be talked about more in society today. Sara Barnard is one of very few authors who have been able to really real me in and make me think. And, I don't just mean a thought here and there while reading. I mean really, while I was reading this book it was all I could think about. So this is definitely not a light read; the plot contains some serious situations and analyses them in a very real, very honest way. I honestly think it will stay with me for a while. 'When I was wild, you were steady... now you are wild - what am I?'I feel as though we don't often consider the whole weight of a situation and the fact that this book brought that into the light and recognises that everyone sees things from a different perspective made this a ground-breaking read for me. You don't need to have been through a situation like this to relate to it, because there are meanings behind the plot that can be interpreted in so many ways. It also brought to light something I thought was really great and that was; if you know something about someone or something that could be bad or potentially harmful, and it doesn't personally affect you, that doesn't mean you shouldn't say something or think of it as the serious situation that it is.The writing as well was excellent and seemed to flow so well making this an extremely quick read. I feel as though the main area that this book lacked in for me personally was the character development. I just don't feel like the main protagonist was explored enough, but maybe thats because it is a pretty short book. I just would have liked more. But what we did get was great and very well done.'I don’t think you can ever really start over. Because if you’re trying to do that, you’re basically trying to run away from yourself. And you can’t. You’re stuck with you, forever. Wherever you go.'I also enjoyed that the book went in a different direction that I feel many other contemporaries do. As the book follows Eden, whom is 'the best friend' and dissects her position in what is happening and not the actual girl whom is at the centre of the situation like most books. It was odd but I really liked it. This made the whole style in which the book is written is also very different to what I expected first going into the book. The choice the author made when deciding to write the story this way is strange and intriguing and it made the book even better in my opinion. Because basically anyone could be a 'best friend', a person watching something happen or being affected by another persons choices. The main message I took from the book is that sometimes you have to do something that is right morally but that is a difficult choice to make where your feelings are concerned.'Everything I've ever lost has been chosen for me. I never had a say. And she's chosen to throw it all away, like it's nothing.'Overall I think the thing I liked most about this book was that it was different from all the usual tropes and things we see in young adult literature. In other words; praise to Sara Barnard for creating this wonderful book, and a plot that develops in such unique and diverse ways. I highly recommend reading this!Thank you to MyKindaBook and Pan Macmillan for sending me an early proof of this wonderful book!RATING: 4 StarsFor more reviews and bookish posts; check out my blog: https://www.sophieelaina.com/
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  • Robin Stevens
    January 1, 1970
    This is a really impressive new book from Sara - it's extremely enjoyable, well-told, shocking without being mawkish and a very thought-provoking look at the pressures on teens today. I adored it and raced through it in a few days. 13+*Please note: this review is meant as a recommendation only. Please do not use it in any marketing material, online or in print, without asking permission from me first. Thank you!*
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  • Gabby
    January 1, 1970
    - so I'm kind of laughing at myself right now because I just realised reading this back through I was calling Eden "Edith". Oops, I mean, I guess that shows something right???Thank you Netgalley/Publisher for sending me this in exchange for an honest review!!Let's just say it shall we? I liked this. I did. I liked the themes explored - adoption, fitting in with a new family, the struggle with being stereotyped. There were some interesting discussions going on and I was glad to see representation - so I'm kind of laughing at myself right now because I just realised reading this back through I was calling Eden "Edith". Oops, I mean, I guess that shows something right???Thank you Netgalley/Publisher for sending me this in exchange for an honest review!!Let's just say it shall we? I liked this. I did. I liked the themes explored - adoption, fitting in with a new family, the struggle with being stereotyped. There were some interesting discussions going on and I was glad to see representation for this in a way I have never seen before. A pair of adopted sisters who know they're adopted and love the new family they're in, no actual 'relationship' drama was surprisingly refreshing (like yay - I ship this and they're happy together #winning), young carers, conversations around opening up and learning to become trustful. It's great, it really was. Yet . . . it was a bit dull. I feel like it wasn't explored enough, and fair enough the main focus is on the story of Edith being upset/confused/conflicted about finding out her best friend ran away with their teacher, but it still could've done a bit better on expanding the sub-plots. I thought it was great when we finally got scenes like that - like the screaming match between Valerie and Edith in the car *might* have made me tear up.Also this book felt surprsingly long. It seemed to just draaaag. And the whole time I was shouting at Edith to just tell. I rememember being around like 39% of the way in and was like "Okay this back and fourth should I - shouldn't I and will she - won't she has been going on long enough now" but nope. And (view spoiler)[I'm really upset that we never really saw Edith tell. Even after she met up with Bonnie and Bonnie made the decision to stay, I felt . . . meh. Edith said about calling the cops but she was still giving them a head start to get away. I didn't like that. And I know you have to think about it, as Edith did LIKE EVERY SINGLE PAGE, that she didn't want to betray her best friend etc but D U D E! Surely her being safe should trump??? (hide spoiler)]. So yeah. I just felt as if this book should have been shorter than it was because it really did start to feel formulaic. Like present day scene / things that now meant something different I knew the truth / present scene (usually included an argument / her texting Bonnie being #conflicted). It just felt like it took forever to get somewhere.But it wasn't terrible. I did like it - I'm just sad it wasn't better.
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  • Katie Hurse
    January 1, 1970
    Huh. I was really expecting to fall in love with this book. Not so much. Honestly, the majority of it was even a 2.5 star read for me, but the last 10% or so (with the trip to Scotland, conflict with Valerie, revelations etc.) was actually pretty powerful stuff so that saved the entire story a little. Overall, though, this book just didn't have the character or depth or emotional impact (again, apart from the last little bit) for me that Sara Barnard's other books had. I felt like so much of it Huh. I was really expecting to fall in love with this book. Not so much. Honestly, the majority of it was even a 2.5 star read for me, but the last 10% or so (with the trip to Scotland, conflict with Valerie, revelations etc.) was actually pretty powerful stuff so that saved the entire story a little. Overall, though, this book just didn't have the character or depth or emotional impact (again, apart from the last little bit) for me that Sara Barnard's other books had. I felt like so much of it read as repetitive - I found myself getting distracted or even a little bored whilst reading. Really disappointed with this one.
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  • Jessikah Stenson
    January 1, 1970
    YES.(Review to follow).
  • Hannah
    January 1, 1970
    One of the most honest and raw YA contemporaries I've read in a while, a story that is so much more than its plot line. I can't wait for everyone to read this book!
  • Marochka
    January 1, 1970
    Отзыв в моём блоге: https://momentarythingsbymarochka.tum...
  • Gabby
    January 1, 1970
    I ended up loving this book a lot more than I thought I would! I read 'A Quiet Kind of Thunder' last year which I enjoyed, but I loved 'Goodbye, Perfect' just that little bit more.Thanks to Macmillan for letting me be part of the blog tour. My full review will be up on my blog on the date of my tour stop, Feb 6. See you then!alwaysandforeverreading.wordpress.com
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  • Steph
    January 1, 1970
    This book is perfect. There’s a tough and “all edges” MC, her “perfect” best friend, her incredible family, a gorgeous boyfriend and a lot of trouble. I love everything Sara Barnard writes and this is no exception. Possibly my favourite thing. I just adored it.
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  • Amber Robertson
    January 1, 1970
    thank you macmillan for an ARC.some points to come later and a full review in february.
  • Kelly (Diva Booknerd)
    January 1, 1970
    An important read that raises the discussion of coercion, grooming and abuse of a position of power over a minor but Eden was incredibly abrasive, it was repetitive and the conclusion was unsatisfying.Review and rating to come.
  • Nemo (The Moonlight Library)
    January 1, 1970
    BRB just sobbing into my pillow because this was just as perfect as Beautiful Broken Girls.Review coming February 3 as part of the blog tour!
  • Ashleigh
    January 1, 1970
    This book frustrated me, but in a good way.Goodbye, Perfect follows Eden, a 15-year old girl whose best friend, Bonnie, has run away with her secret boyfriend. That would be worrying enough, but the secret boyfriend turns out to be her music teacher, Mr Cohn. Prior to them running away, Bonnie contacts Eden to let her know she was disappearing with her boyfriend, whom Eden assumed she had never met, and asks her not to tell anyone. Well, when Eden discovers the identity of the boyfriend, things This book frustrated me, but in a good way.Goodbye, Perfect follows Eden, a 15-year old girl whose best friend, Bonnie, has run away with her secret boyfriend. That would be worrying enough, but the secret boyfriend turns out to be her music teacher, Mr Cohn. Prior to them running away, Bonnie contacts Eden to let her know she was disappearing with her boyfriend, whom Eden assumed she had never met, and asks her not to tell anyone. Well, when Eden discovers the identity of the boyfriend, things become a bit tricky. How long can Eden keep Bonnie's secret?As I said before, this book frustrated me. All I wanted throughout the book was for Eden to wake up and tell someone that she was in contact with Bonnie. I understand that she wanted to look out for her best friend and she thought she was being loyal, but as many other characters pointed, it wasn't fair for her to have to carry the secret. As much as I felt like Bonnie was being selfish throughout the book, you have to remember she's the victim in this. She was groomed by her teacher and essentially abducted, and the worst part is she doesn't realise she was. (view spoiler)[As shown at the end of the book, Bonnie is clearly unhappy that she had to go back to her old life, and she's going to have to deal with the repercussions for a long time (hide spoiler)]. Overall, this was a great book and I loved it, even though I wanted to scream at every character. Loved it.
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  • Trisha
    January 1, 1970
    Oh this is strong and authentic.Really enjoyed it.
  • Marie Andrews
    January 1, 1970
    I loved Sara Barnard's other two books and couldn't wait to start Goodbye Perfect. However, I had very mixed feelings on it.I thought this book was okay. There were certain aspects of this book that I really enjoyed. I loved the relationship Eden had with her little sister Daisy. It was fantastic to read about a close knit family consisting of both biological and non-biological relations, especially how Eden and Valerie (her adoptive parents' child) evolved throughout the story. I also enjoyed E I loved Sara Barnard's other two books and couldn't wait to start Goodbye Perfect. However, I had very mixed feelings on it.I thought this book was okay. There were certain aspects of this book that I really enjoyed. I loved the relationship Eden had with her little sister Daisy. It was fantastic to read about a close knit family consisting of both biological and non-biological relations, especially how Eden and Valerie (her adoptive parents' child) evolved throughout the story. I also enjoyed Eden's relationship with her boyfriend Connor. It was refreshing to read about a teen relationship that wasn't portrayed in a toxic way and I liked how there was a huge emphasis on not being pressured to have a sexual relationship, instead just enjoying one another's presence. The fact that Connor was a carer for his mother was also an interesting feature in Goodbye Perfect and I wish this was something that was explored a little more, as it's very rarely covered in YA books. I loved both Eden and Connor as characters, and it portrayed a realistic relationship, as well as covering all the general stress of school and family life.However, what I wasn't a huge fan of was the plot itself. I don't particularly enjoy teacher-student relationships anyway because they're often very cliche, but I felt that it sometimes fell a little flat. The first 20% and the last 20% of the book I really enjoyed, but in the middle half, I feel as if nothing much happened (we're talking 200 pages ish). There was a huge focus on the should I or shouldn't I tell about about Bonnie running away with Jack (their music teacher), which I felt got a little repetitive. I would have loved the story to cover some more of the aspects I liked above in more detail here, and feel it was a missed opportunity to make an 'okay' book, become 'fantastic'. I really like Sara Barnard's work and loved her other two books, but this fell a little flat for me, I LOVED the characters and the writing was perfect as usual, but I wished *something* else happened in the plot, perhaps a further sub-plot of some kind exploring Eden's relationships some more. I would definitely recommend Beautiful Broken Things and A Quiet Kind Of Thunder, and perhaps this book if you were really intrigued in the sound of the plot, because the characters themselves are brilliant.
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  • Charlotte
    January 1, 1970
    *This book was sent to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review*The story follows fifteen year old Eden Rose McKinley who is faced with a dilemma when her best friend, Bonnie, runs off with her boyfriend… who turns out to be their teacher. She is secretly communicating with her friend and lies to the police in order to protect her friend. But lies can only take someone so far. To say that Goodbye Perfect is an intense read would be an understatement. From the moment Eden first gets i *This book was sent to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review*The story follows fifteen year old Eden Rose McKinley who is faced with a dilemma when her best friend, Bonnie, runs off with her boyfriend… who turns out to be their teacher. She is secretly communicating with her friend and lies to the police in order to protect her friend. But lies can only take someone so far. To say that Goodbye Perfect is an intense read would be an understatement. From the moment Eden first gets in touch with Bonnie after her disappearance, I was willing with everything in me that she would do the right thing. Eden has an unwavering loyalty to her friend and also a naivety that comes with being fifteen years old: Bonnie claims that she “loves” Mr Cohen and Eden doesn’t see any reason to question that. She is aware it’s serious because the police are involved, but doesn’t understand why it requires a police investigation and media frenzy. The aspect of media frenzy was a perfect opportunity to take a stab at how the media choses to respond in certain scenarios. Bonnie is quickly labelled a “good” girl which Eden, who grew up in a foster home, is quick to latch on to, explaining how if she was in Bonnie’s position, there would be a much more negative response than to the smiling pictures of her best friend splattered across the front of newspapers. This book gets straight into the plot and opens with the police arriving at Eden’s house to interview her and the other backstory elements are littered throughout. This worked well as the lull periods in the investigation were padded out with insights into their friendship and “conversations that took on a different meaning after she left” which really showed how the sign were there, if only Eden had known what to look for. This story terrified and baffled me in equal measure because I couldn’t believe what I was reading, but then I remembered this is not entirely fictional. There have been many stories like this emerging in the media. It’s really happening. And that made it all the more difficult to stomach.Goodbye Perfect is an utterly brilliant cat-and-mouse story that tests how far one girl will go to keep a secret.
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  • Ania
    January 1, 1970
    I received a copy of this book on Netgalley in exchange for an honest reviewGoodbye, Perfect is my second book by Sara Barnard so I went in with certain expectations. I read A Quiet Kind of Thunder earlier this year and while it was an enjoyable, fast read that picked up on some current problems, I did feel it did not completely win me over with the conclusion. I am really pleased to say that this was not the case with Goodbye, Perfect. As soon as I started reading the book, it made me think of I received a copy of this book on Netgalley in exchange for an honest reviewGoodbye, Perfect is my second book by Sara Barnard so I went in with certain expectations. I read A Quiet Kind of Thunder earlier this year and while it was an enjoyable, fast read that picked up on some current problems, I did feel it did not completely win me over with the conclusion. I am really pleased to say that this was not the case with Goodbye, Perfect. As soon as I started reading the book, it made me think of a case from a few years ago when a Kent teacher run away with his student to France and it did make me interested - the story itself is not told from the point of view of the girl on the run tho. It is told from a perspective of a loyal friend who is left behind and who didn't even know. It deals with trust, loyalty but also touches on the stereotypes that are so present in the society these days - a white middle class strait A*s student doing a runner? Sara Barnard takes us though a whole range of emotions going through Eden's head (the friend who was left behind) within a week of Bonnie's (her fugitive). Dealing with family, with school, with Bonnie's family, with police but most of all the lost of a best friend's identity. Shouldn't your best friend know you're involved with a teacher? After the initial annoyance with Eden, the book kept me hooked and I did stay up till 2 am to finish it. The ending is not gonna blow your mind but it feels right and it gave me all the answers that I needed to be a very satisfied reader and gladly give this book 4.5*!
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  • Brianna Henderson
    January 1, 1970
    This is now my new favourite young adult book. Sara writes young adult fantastically and I'm in love with all her characters. Goodbye, Perfect is about best friends Eden and Bonnie, when Bonnie runs away from home with someone she shouldn't, all hell breaks loose. Aren't best friends supposed to tell each other everything?...
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  • Erena
    January 1, 1970
    3.5/5 review to come!
  • Kirra
    January 1, 1970
    Look out for my review on the 7th of February as part of the Goodbye, Perfect blog tour and a Q&A with the author Sara Barnard! ☺ Look out for my review on the 7th of February as part of the Goodbye, Perfect blog tour and a Q&A with the author Sara Barnard! ☺️
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  • Michelle (Fluttering Butterflies)
    January 1, 1970
    Found this one really interesting. About friendship, the definition of love and family, about secrets and academic pressure.
  • Alice (most ardently alice)
    January 1, 1970
    Originally posted here: https://ardentlyalice.wordpress.com/2...Eden and Bonnie balance each other out. Eden is wild, whilst Bonnie is sensible. Bonnie exceeds at school, whilst Eden... barely scrapes by. It is perhaps the reason these polar opposites become best friends in the first place. But then Bonnie does something entirely unexpected, breaking the mould they so meticulously squeezed themselves into, and Eden is left to pick up the pieces, to decide her own right from wrong. When Bonnie ru Originally posted here: https://ardentlyalice.wordpress.com/2...Eden and Bonnie balance each other out. Eden is wild, whilst Bonnie is sensible. Bonnie exceeds at school, whilst Eden... barely scrapes by. It is perhaps the reason these polar opposites become best friends in the first place. But then Bonnie does something entirely unexpected, breaking the mould they so meticulously squeezed themselves into, and Eden is left to pick up the pieces, to decide her own right from wrong. When Bonnie runs away to be with their music teacher, Mr Cohn, Eden questions just about everything; the authenticity of her friendship when a secret so monumental goes unshared, her relationship with her adoptive family, boyfriend and teachers. Most important of all, Eden has to decide where she fits in all of the chaos and decide, when push comes to shove, if she wants to live up to the stereotypes she has forced upon herself for so long.Sara Barnard's authenticity in her writing is really something. Having read both 'Beautiful Broken Things' and 'A Quiet Kind of Thunder', her dedication and commitment to accuracy is clear through her exploration of toxic friendships, communication, what being a teenage girl is really like and representation of honest sexual experiences. 'Goodbye, Perfect' nails it once again and continues the name Sara Barnard is making for herself.From problematic relationships to the academic expectations put on teenagers, 'Goodbye, Perfect' covers just about everything young women have to deal with whilst battling the bullies, sexual pressures and trying to understand who 'you' is. And with Eden as our main character this story couldn't be anything other than incredible. I loved Eden. She's seen the worst sides of life living with her estranged mother and little sister, Daisy; going through the fostering and adoption process and coming out the other side as a pretty well-rounded, awesome individual.She was such a gritty character who really held the plot line even though it didn't entirely centre around her specifically. Having such a complex issue of grooming and unbalanced power dynamics in a relationship and seeing it from the viewpoint of someone watching someone else go through it was so intriguing in the way it, in turn, shaped and developed her as a person. The storytelling was so well crafted with the flashes of Eden's past, as well as the collection of articles and contextualising past conversations between Eden and Bonnie that drew the connecting dots to current events within the book.The representation of adoption and a non-traditional family unit felt to me really respectfully done (although of course I can't comment) and opened the story up to insight into sisterhood between not only Eden and her younger sister, Daisy, but also Valerie, her adoptive sister. Their interactions felt so natural and realistic to me and warmed my heart when they learned to steadily open up to each other and share tender moments, as well as their secrets and mistakes. As one of five children, including three sisters, capturing the special bond between sisters felt close to my heart.And, speaking of the different relationships explored, um hello Connor. Can Sara Barnard write a love interest I'm not completely head over heels for within the first page of their introduction? Probably not, no. The thing is, Sara doesn't make the love interests A-holes in her books. Not to say they're perfect or that all boys are nice (spoiler alert, there are plenty of sucky people in this world, so books should write about those, too), but Sara doesn't focus her books around one half of the relationship royally screwing up and spending the latter half of the book making it up to them. Instead she writes relationships that, yeah, aren't always completely faultless but that are still two people supporting and growing with one another, and that was really clear between Eden and Connor. He took her for what she was and could see beyond the cracks and hard persona she sometimes put up. In turn, she respected that, as carer to his mother, he couldn't always be there for Eden 100% of the time. I loved them and my only criticism was that I could have read so much more about the time they managed to snag to be just them.'Goodbye, Perfect'? More like Helloooooo Perfect! This story perfectly highlights the absurd amounts of pressures put on teenage girls to excel in both their grades and relationships, and the resulting desire to shift and go a little bit wild. It's attentive too, taking care to highlight problematic behaviours and in depicting raw, flawed, ultimately wonderful characters.Thank you to My Kinda Book  for this review copy!*
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  • Emily Hale
    January 1, 1970
    I requested this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review."When I was wild, you were steady... now you are wild - what am I?"Rating 4 StarsI have loved all of Sara Barnards previous works and yet again this one does not disappoint. The dynamic in this book compared to the other two is a lot different. The pacing is very slow in the first half and within the last 100 pages picks up immensely and is very action packed. I was a little dissapointed by how short the bit we waited for I requested this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review."When I was wild, you were steady... now you are wild - what am I?"Rating 4 StarsI have loved all of Sara Barnards previous works and yet again this one does not disappoint. The dynamic in this book compared to the other two is a lot different. The pacing is very slow in the first half and within the last 100 pages picks up immensely and is very action packed. I was a little dissapointed by how short the bit we waited for was. It was slightly rushed and I felt could of been a bit longer however I understand that it would fit in real life scenarios. In this book was a wide variety of characters. Some who I loved and some who I disliked. Eden was personally one of my favourites. Throughout the book you see her learning from her mistakes in the past and see her struggles with her loyalty and her own morals. I also love the relationship she has with Connor. They are mature and are not all over each other which I find trends in YA books. Connors also very mature for his age looking after his mother. It is nice to see people respect there parents in books. I found Bonnie to be partly relate-able. Growing up pressured to do well as that's all you have known is how I felt during GCSES. Never once testing the boundaries and then just cracking under the pressure. I know how that feels however I felt that Bonnie was selfish and cruel. I understood her wanting to leave but the fact that she felt no guilt for what she was doing to her family and especially Eden made me resent her as a person however I felt by the way she was portrayed this was to be expected by readers. Finally Valerie, a character who was central in the latter half of the book ,was another I loved. I feel she was a mash of both Bonnie and Eden but as an adult. She was achieving high grades but knew how to have fun also. She personified them both as one person.The subject matter of this book is not something I read usually. I tend to find this topic written immaturely and very comical. However this book took a serious matter and showed that this happens under our noses everyday and its something that's relevant to now. I felt it tackled the subject maturely and was serious. I also felt it tackled the subject of friendship and how loyal do we be before realising that its better to share your problems.The ending of the book left me heartbroken but I felt it ended for the best in the interest of the characters. After everything that happened they were all better off following there own paths. Who knows what would of happened in time but for now the ending was satisfying and realistic.Overall I enjoyed the book. It raised questions in which I answered about my own life and gave a mature account of a current issue. This book should be looked at by many young adults to teach them about loyalty and the issues of illegal relationships as they will all ultimately end in disaster. Only reason of a deducted star was the pacing and the dislike of the selfishness of Bonnie which is never rectified.
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  • Karen Barber
    January 1, 1970
    Not due for release until early 2018, I am grateful to NetGalley for allowing me to read this prior to publication, although I can see it being a book that will split opinion.Let's deal with the elephant in the room first of all...this book focuses on a teacher/student relationship which means it is not ever going to be an easy book to recommend. Though we learn about Bonnie's relationship through her friend, Eden, there's no escaping the fact that we're likely to judge things even before we sta Not due for release until early 2018, I am grateful to NetGalley for allowing me to read this prior to publication, although I can see it being a book that will split opinion.Let's deal with the elephant in the room first of all...this book focuses on a teacher/student relationship which means it is not ever going to be an easy book to recommend. Though we learn about Bonnie's relationship through her friend, Eden, there's no escaping the fact that we're likely to judge things even before we start reading. I can't see my way past this, and think the subject will put a lot of readers off without them picking up the book. This would be a shame as I felt the book was more about Eden and her growing character.'Goodbye, Perfect' opens with Eden finding out that her best friend has run away. There's been some talk of an older boyfriend, but Bonnie hasn't shared details and this struck me as odd. If you are best friends, the only reason you don't want to tell someone about it is because you know there's something inappropriate. Very quickly, Eden learns that this mysterious boyfriend is actually the girls' music teacher. From this point on we're in strange territory.Eden has always been the friend most likely to cause trouble. Adopted as a young child, Eden has made her share of mistakes. Perfect she is not. But her best friend, Bonnie, fits the stereotype of perfect pupil. Straight A student, head girl, positive...we get the idea. So, is Bonnie a victim of grooming or a deluded teen desperate to break free from the constraints and expectations placed upon her?Barnard takes us through the process of investigating Bonnie's disappearance. We see a little of how the police work and we are encouraged to consider behaviour of adults and those in authority as Eden and those left behind try to come to terms with what has happened. We are offered numerous reasons to try to explain why Bonnie might have fallen for her music teacher. However, because we are never given the view of those involved directly it is difficult to feel we are being given a satisfactory reason for these events to have happened.The initial part of the book seemed rather slow if I'm being honest. As a reader, I felt I'd already decided there was nothing to justify what was happening and it frustrated me that Eden didn't immediately try to take the course of action I would have hoped for. However, I really enjoyed seeing the growth in this rather prickly young woman as she comes to realise what's important to her, and overcomes her own barriers to try and forge her own life. The latter part of the book picked up the pace and became a story that will certainly engage readers.
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  • Sophie
    January 1, 1970
    *I was kindly gifted this book from My Kinda Book in exchange for an honest review* - Release date: 8 February 2017This book was an easy 5/5* for me. Like Beautiful Broken things and A Quiet Kind of Thunder, the writing style that Sara uses is simply beautiful and catching.This story is about Eden McKinley, who knows she is unable to rely on anything in this world, apart from her best friend, Bonnie. It comes as a surprise when Bonnie decides to run away with her secret boyfriend, who Eden think *I was kindly gifted this book from My Kinda Book in exchange for an honest review* - Release date: 8 February 2017This book was an easy 5/5* for me. Like Beautiful Broken things and A Quiet Kind of Thunder, the writing style that Sara uses is simply beautiful and catching.This story is about Eden McKinley, who knows she is unable to rely on anything in this world, apart from her best friend, Bonnie. It comes as a surprise when Bonnie decides to run away with her secret boyfriend, who Eden thinks is imaginary (due to unknown identity) - which comes as a huge shock when she finds out who Bonnie’s boyfriend is. To start, I felt so sorry for Bonnie, as it was clear she was in love with her secret boyfriend, but as the story progressed, i began to HATE her, she was selfish and in complete denial. Whereas Eden, I completely felt for throughout the whole story, who had been adopted, and found it extremely difficult to bond with her sister as she was adopted - the end of the story brings both of the sisters together and really touches the heart of how much it hurts them both to think they live completely different worlds. Bonnie was ‘Head Girl’ in school, and everyone felt sorry to find out she had been ‘kidnapped’ by her music teacher - WHO WAS HER SECRET BOYFRIEND - Mr Cohn. When in reality, it showed that Bonnie had no desire to come home and wanted to hang onto the promises that Mr Cohn had made to her - easily relatable to teenagers who feel they’re in love for the first time. Eden was left with the burden of keeping the secret she completely promised Bonnie, which was effecting her school life, home life and her relationship with her boyfriend - Connor. In the end, it was Valerie (her sister) who had her phone tracked whilst Eden was determined to find Bonnie - the ending was completely heartbreaking and showed desperate measures that a person would go to for their best friend, only to be completely cut out of her life, for good.I know this book is unavailable until February 2018, but it is so worth the read! Well done, Sara!
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  • Alison
    January 1, 1970
    Actual rating: 3.5/5 Eden's brilliant, dependable best friend Bonnie has run away with her music teacher, trsuting Eden with her location and swearing her to secrecy. What follows is the fallout of emotional turmoil that's left behind for Eden, her family, and Bonnie's family. Reading this book felt a lot like someone dug into my heart with a spade and buried the characters' anguish there. Goodbye, Perfect is a page-flipping novel that kept me up till 3am to finish it.Probably my absolute favour Actual rating: 3.5/5 Eden's brilliant, dependable best friend Bonnie has run away with her music teacher, trsuting Eden with her location and swearing her to secrecy. What follows is the fallout of emotional turmoil that's left behind for Eden, her family, and Bonnie's family. Reading this book felt a lot like someone dug into my heart with a spade and buried the characters' anguish there. Goodbye, Perfect is a page-flipping novel that kept me up till 3am to finish it.Probably my absolute favourite thing about this novel was how each character had a thing. Something that was going wrong for them that made life a little bit harder. Because that's reality- no one has it easy. And as such, none of the characters in Goodbye, Perfect are two dimensional. When put under the emotional strain of the situation, they all reached a breaking point, fractured, spilled over, and then tried to heal. My second favourite thing about Goodbye, Perfect was the fantastic familial relationships throughout the novel. Eden has a brilliant support system around her, though she was closed off to a lot of it. Her adoptive parents are all kinds of wonderful. Eden's boyfriend, Conner, has a family he has to care for, but whose love is so ovbious. Bonnie, whose family loves her but couldn't show it properly- to the point she felt she had to leave and make all the wrong choices.For some reason though, I didn't quite connect as much as I feel I should've with these characters. While I really enjoyed this book (not for the subject matter, rather for the expression and portrayal of different relationships), I just didn't love it as much as I loved Barnard's previous book, A Quiet Kind of Thunder. But that's just me (I really, really loved that one). Barnard is one of those contemporary authors who knows how to speak to your heart, and give you characters you just want to hug in comfort while they cry. I'll definitely be picking up her future books.
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  • Joséphine (Word Revel)
    January 1, 1970
    Initial thoughts: After three books from Sara Barnard, it's evident that she doesn't shy away from difficult relationships. Goodbye, Perfect is probably the toughest so far because it deals with a relationship that leaves a bad taste in your mouth: a teacher-student relationship. Written from the perspective of the best friend, who's left out and trying to understand and come to terms with the situation and consequences, Goodbye, Perfect is in many ways an important book. It grapples with the da Initial thoughts: After three books from Sara Barnard, it's evident that she doesn't shy away from difficult relationships. Goodbye, Perfect is probably the toughest so far because it deals with a relationship that leaves a bad taste in your mouth: a teacher-student relationship. Written from the perspective of the best friend, who's left out and trying to understand and come to terms with the situation and consequences, Goodbye, Perfect is in many ways an important book. It grapples with the dangers of overstepping boundaries and the importance of keeping safe.Precisely because of the disturbing topic, this book was a page-turner. I just wish that beyond asking all the pertinent questions, it would've offered more answers and insight. That aside, I also enjoyed reading about the main characters' relationships with her adoptive parents, her adoptive elder sister and her younger sister._________Note: I received an advanced reading copy from a local distributor in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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