Rules Of Attraction
By: Simone Elkeles
When Carlos Fuentes returns to America after living in Mexico for a year, he doesn’t want any part of the life his older brother, Alex, has laid out for him at a high school in Colorado.
Carlos likes living his life on the edge and wants to carve his own path—just like Alex did. Then he meets Kiara Westford. She doesn’t talk much and is completely intimidated by Carlos’ wild ways. As they get to know one another, Carlos assumes Kiara thinks she’s too good for him, and refuses to admit that she might be getting to him. But he soon realizes that being himself is exactly what Kiara needs right now.
summary from goodreads.com
My Rating: 4/5
This is the second book in the Perfect Chemistry trilogy. It will be followed by a third and final book coming next year in 2011. I am a huge Simone Elkeles fan and absolutely loved Perfect Chemistry and everything it had to offer. Much like its predecessor, Rules Of Attraction is very similar to Perfect Chemistry in theme and plot so it's safe to say that if you enjoyed the first one, you'll very much appreciate this one as well.
Although I enjoyed this book immensely, for me, nothing will top Perfect Chemistry (not that it was a competition to begin with). Don't get me wrong, I liked the characters especially Carlos and a few others but there was just something missing that I can't quite place my finger on. I think this feeling may largely be due to Kiara and her lack of well...conflict. With Brittany, she had her own story and her own problems outside of what was occurring with Alex. Both of those characters had their separate share of troubles that needed confronting. With Rules Of Attraction, Carlos has the majority of the conflict present in the storyline and much else. Kiara's life seems pretty much perfect and her conflicts tend to revolve mainly around Carlos. I understand that not every teen has to deal with monumental issues in their young adult life but it would have been nice if Kiara had something outside of Carlos that needed addressing. One thing I did really like about Kiara however is how different she was from Brittany.
One aspect that fans of Perfect Chemistry will appreciate is the reoccurring appearances made by Alex and Brittany throughout Rules Of Attraction. I thought this was a nice touch and I've always been a fan when authors bring old characters back into their current stories as a sort of reassurance to readers, offering a usually discrete update on their lives. Readers of Perfect Chemistry all know how Alex and Brittany's story ends in the long run but this book allows you to catch a glimpse of the occurrences that happened in between.
Ever present in this book is the humor, sexual tension, witty banter, and intense character chemistry that I highly enjoyed in the first installment and overall. I'm very interested to see where Elkeles takes the third book this time following the youngest Fuentes brother Luis. Carlos mentions in Rules Of Attraction how Luis wants to be an astronaut and has high hopes much like Alex does for his future. This automatically puts Luis in a very different place than Alex and Carlos when we first meet them.
Overall: If you loved Perfect Chemistry, you will without a doubt enjoy Rules Of Attraction. Non-readers of this series; if you enjoy contemporary YA romance novels with humor, great character chemistry, and forbidden relationships as well as much more, this series would definitely be worth a try.