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Perfect Escape Paperback – April 16, 2013
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"Brown paints an unflinching, nuanced portrait of siblings in a family overwhelmed by serious illness....Readers will enjoy the trip."―VOYA
"[A] road-trip novel with momentum and realistic characters that will have many teen readers hitching a ride."―School Library Journal
"The stark honesty of Kendra's feelings about living with a brother with a mental illness will touch readers, but it is Grayson's responses that really set this apart as an unflinching and heartbreaking portrayal of the complexities of such a relationship."―The Bulletin
"Kendra's struggle to face her mistakes will resonate with many young adult readers...intelligent and compassionate."―Library Media Connection
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Perfect, good girl Kendra, four weeks before graduation, is about to get caught as the ringleader in a cheating scandal. She grabs her brother Grayson, who has debilitating OCD and is fresh out of a psych hospital, and they take to the road. The plan is to drive cross country to see her best friend Zoe, whose parents moved her to California to get away from Grayson. Along the way they pick up a young mother and her infant. California or bust.
-Kendra, Grayson and Rena were interesting, fairly well developed characters.
-Grayson's OCD was handled fairly accurately as were the way Kendra and the parents reacted to it.
-Loved the premise.
-The sibling relationship was portrayed authentically.
-The plot was uneven. The beginning grabbed my interest, the middle got repetitive, a big of excitement toward the end.
-Rena. She was an interesting character, but her story, at times, overshadowed the siblings.
-THE PERFECT ESCAPE as a whole reading experience.
-The ending. THE PERFECT ESCAPE just stopped without resolution. I hate that.
-The ending. Hated what resolution there was.
Themes: OCD, mental illness, siblings, road trip, school pressures, teenage mothers, runaways, friendship, road trips
I think most teens will like, but not love THE PERFECT ESCAPE. Those with particular interest to OCD and mental illness will find the book more interesting.
I never really connected with Kendra. She just seemed very whiny and melodramatic, and I couldn't understand her reasoning. There's a lot of telling and not a lot of showing, making Kendra a somewhat underdeveloped character. It especially bothered me that we don't find out about the full extent of the cheating ordeal until the very ending - the revelation is underwhelming, but finding out about it earlier might have made it easier for the reader to understand why Kendra chose to run away. I get that we're not supposed to like Kendra at the beginning and that the point is to see her grow over the course of the novel, but the character growth is not strong enough to carry the story. What she discovers about herself and her relationship with Grayson is not developed enough and without further exploration, it didn't feel real to me. Since Perfect Escape is laid out to be a very character-driven story, this lack of character depth really impacted my enjoyment of the novel.
I also wasn't impressed with the Zoe-storyline. Once Kendra "kidnaps" her sleeping brother and leaves for their impromptu road trip, she has to figure out where they're going and decides they're going to visit their old friend Zoe in California.Read more ›
Perfect Escape is my first experience with Jennifer Brown, and I have to say I was pretty impressed. I liked her free-flowing style, and even though contemporary YA is not my usual genre, I really enjoyed the plot and the characters.
The plot itself is pretty straightforward - Kendra makes a huge mistake and with her brother suffering from the limitations of his OCD, she makes an uncharacteristically rash decision to just drive as far away from her personal and family issues. At first, she doesn't really have a plan, but one forms as she makes her way across the state, and without telling Grayson the real reason, she keeps on driving towards California.
What I loved most about Perfect Escape was undoubtedly the relationships between the characters. Although Grayson and Kendra had their issues, they also supported each other the best way that they knew how - whether it was the right way or not, it was done with sibling love rather than personal motivations. There are also other characters that they meet along the way, and one in particular I found fascinating and my only quibble with her was that I didn't feel like her story was explored in enough depth.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Kendra has always felt the pressure to be perfect, as she stands in the shadow of her older brother Grayson. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Lupine Smile
Having read Torn Away by Jennifer Brown, I expected much of Perfect Escape. I wasn't disappointed at all. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Books4Tomorrow
I had my first encounter with Jennifer Brown's work in Perfect Escape. The story is simple, easy, and a steady read from start to finish. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books
This is my third book by Jennifer Brown, which I enjoyed, but not to the degree of the other two. This book is much more laid back that the others with no major crisis or climax... Read morePublished 24 months ago by Nicola Mansfield
I read it in three days it was so good love it totally recommend this book! I love the way the author wrote the bookPublished on November 10, 2013 by Breanna Halling
Loved it...Jennifer Brown always finds interesting things to write about & this book was no exception. I recommend it highly.Published on August 12, 2013 by mo walking nana
I gave this book 4 stars because I thought it was a very compeling book. It was written well. I wish it had a happier ending, though. I would recommend this book to anyone over 12. Read morePublished on June 25, 2013 by Jo Lynn Cashwell
I don't know about you all, but I am always a fan of a road trip novel. Actual road trips? I probably couldn't handle it. But I could read about them forever. Read morePublished on June 12, 2013 by Taylor (Reading is the Thing