Review: Goodbye Perfect by Sarah Barnard

Goodbye Perfect

Series : N/A


Source : Author

Release Date : February 8th 2018


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.

Tash M

As a massive fan of Barnard’s last release A Quiet Kind of Thunder, I had high expectations for her latest novel Goodbye, Perfect.

Unfortunately I didn’t have the same experience with this novel , like I hoped.  Student and Teacher  relationships are tricky and there was so much potential with this novel given the circumstances . It was a highly charged novel that didn’t hand out important lessons which it need to have.  As the ending was an disappointment given that Eden and Bonnie were both tackling an important issue at opposite ends that had high repercussions . After all the  mystery  and running around, there should been some growth. Instead of the mess we are left behind with .

Our lead Eden was the supposedly best friend left behind without a clue . Forced to step up and deal with the mess Bonnie has caused whilst trying to keep self together.   Everyone in her world is affected in someone way and she trying to keep things smooth sailing whilst carry a secret that could  change the case for the police and put an end to farce happening in her world.

Loyalty makes her  stop from revealing things and Eden grapples with this decision. She doesn’t have a lot of friends it seems and Bonnie has been with her through thick and then. However Eden wasn’t the ideal character for this responsibility given she still need to do some growing up.  She was written  as a bit of a wild teenager. Brought up in a broken home until she was adopted , Eden has her own struggles of that childhood and the fact that she is dyslexic and has to protect Daisy somehwat . The author pens in such a way that you feel she should be the one who doing the crazy things instead of Bonnie. Rebelling and trying to find her place in the world. As Bonnie is the  straight laced A student who  fall head first in love unaware of the realities of young love.  Stories of Bonnie are told by Eden throughout the book and present a picture that makes her perfect for the situation that has unfold if you put the information together . As despite being the perfect student, Bonnie has vulnerabilities  that makes her perfect for the grooming that lead her to running away with a teacher.

A situation that changes everything and sees the roles somewhat reversed.  Surprisingly  it’s Eden has a boyfriend who keeps her grounded , a fellow classmate named Connor who has own fair share of a hard life which allows the two  to connect and provide support to each other.  He is the character that could have a more intriguing story and had the potential of making the story go along another path. As he seemed more level headed then the other two put together even though he had a lot going on. He pushed Eden into  realising what she need to do and I think he made her for the better.  Even though she didn’t grow much

Goodbye Perfect  wasn’t half bad if you took the snapshot we were presented into consideration that it was  only a short period of time.  However there need to be answers and sense of responsibility taken instead of ending the way it did.  Eden was a character that could have grown on me more if she was restricted by the issues presented and allowed to explore more of her life.  There was potential there to see her more as a likeable character instead of a teenager torn by loyalty and unable to deal with the news. Goodbye, Perfect is a mixed bag that has it’s moments but sorely needed a lesson or two added to make it something special.

3.5 stars


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