February 9, 2015

Past Perfect - Leila Sales

Past Perfect book cover
Past Perfect by Leila Sales
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: October 4, 2011
Source/Format: Bought || Paperback

All Chelsea wants to do this summer is hang out with her best friend, hone her talents as an ice cream connoisseur, and finally get over Ezra, the boy who broke her heart. But when Chelsea shows up for her summer job at Essex Historical Colonial Village (yes, really), it turns out Ezra’s working there too. Which makes moving on and forgetting Ezra a lot more complicated…even when Chelsea starts falling for someone new. 

Maybe Chelsea should have known better than to think that a historical reenactment village could help her escape her past. But with Ezra all too present, and her new crush seeming all too off limits, all Chelsea knows is that she’s got a lot to figure out about love. Because those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it…

Thinking about Past Perfect brings me warm and fuzzy feelings because it is such a delightful read! I couldn't stop smiling as I turned the pages of this adorable novel. Family, friendship + romance are all prominent, well-explored elements, but it is the thoughtful commentary on history that has stayed with me since I finished. Since history is a big part of Chelsea's story, I thought I'd take some historical inspiration from Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address and write y'all a speech declaring why you should read Past Perfect.
A few weeks and a couple of days ago, Hannah brought forth the idea of reading Past Perfect, a contemporary novel by Leila Sales, conceived in genuine appreciation and dedicated to the proposition that I needed a book that would get me out of my reading funk.

Now I am determined to accomplish a great task, testing whether I can sufficiently convince readers of the merits of this novel. I have met you here on a great platform for that purpose. I have come to dedicate a portion of this place, in an attempt to convince you to read Past Perfect. It is altogether fitting and proper that I should do this, after being so duly impressed with Sales' setting, characters and story.

In a larger sense, it is difficult to explain the way I feel about Past Perfect. There's just a genuine feeling of having jived so completely with a character and a story as to elevate this tale in my esteem, far above anything I expected. While the world will little note, nor long remember what I say today, it will never forget this novel upon finally reading it.

It is for me, the reader who has finished, to be able to gush without fail about the excellent characters (particularly main character Chelsea, who is a delight), and the fun setting of a historical reenactment village. It is a great task that remains before me - that from what I have read, I take increased devotion to that cause for which others have already taken up arms: the promotion of this darling little read that brings Chelsea's past, present and future all together. Past Perfect, a true delight, shall have all the book pushing it deserves - and this devotion shall not perish from the earth.
A little old-fashioned, but I'm fairly certain you all get the gist: I really enjoyed Past Perfect! It was, as Hannah promised, enjoyable. I related really well with Chelsea, who is torn between memories of her past, conflicts in her present and the lack of clarity about her future - all things I've felt at some point in my life (and still do). And all the secondary characters - her best friend, her love interest, her ex, her family, the people of the village - were really fun to read about! Plus, there's the village itself (which sounds like such a fun place to visit... and not so fun to work at) and the various plot points (the "war" between the two reenactment villages, Chelsea's romantic life) just made the story really fun to follow.

If you've yet to read Past Perfect, I highly encourage you to do so! It's got funny quips + meaningful moments, a romance to root for, a support system to love and a main character who you'll want to be friends with before the novel ends. It's a lighter read, for sure, but definitely worth checking out! (Have I mentioned there's ice cream? And trampolines?)


  1. I haven't read anything By Leila Sales yet but I really want to!! I own This song will save your life, so I guess I'll start with that one ;)

  2. This is on my wishlist, it sounds SO GOOD! Fantastic review, Alexa! :)

  3. I'm adding this to my TBR list on Goodreads right now, it sounds really good! I loved your review, interesting twist!

  4. I hadn't heard of this one before, but it sounds like a great read! I think it sounds like the sort of contemporary I'd really enjoy reading! Great review!

  5. Awww, this was too cute. I love your Gettysburg Address inspired speech. I read this last year and I definitely liked it. It's not an all-time favorite, but still really cute.

  6. I really enjoyed This Song Will Save Your Life and it sounds like I need to read this one, too!

  7. Danielle @ Love at First PageFebruary 10, 2015 at 5:36 PM

    Thanks for the review, Alexa! This sounds like a really cute/fun read. The historical reenactment has me very very curious!
    P.S. I like the speech. :)

  8. Yes! I'm glad you felt so strongly about this one too. We need to campaign for a new cover though.

  9. YAY! I loved Past Perfect (Thanks to Estelle for buying it for me!) -- it was just so much fun, a really great collection of characters, and a fantastic story. The historical aspect was so delightful!


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