A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Expect plenty of meanness, narcissism, and self-indulgence all around. These girls lie, cheat, steal, have sex with teachers, battle with bulimia, shop constantly, and plot against one another. There's also a mysterious character "A" that gets particular delight in torturing the four main characters and exposing secrets.
Violence & Scariness
One girl pushes her sister down the steps as she remembers pushing another girl off a rock. A 7th grade girl is found underneath a slab of concrete in her own backyard. Another girl is hit by a car and left for dead. Police rough up a man during an arrest.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Students are described as sexy in the 7th grade. A character comes to terms with being a lesbian. A high school student has an affair with her teacher. A character's father has an affair with his own student and leaves his wife for her.
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Some swear words, but not overindulgent.
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Products & Purchases
Somewhere among all of the name brands -- Gucci, Van, Seven, Chanel, etc. -- there's a story about four girls.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters are shown drinking and smoking.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this third installment in the Pretty Little Liars series stays on the "mean girl clique" gravy train. Sex, lies, murder, betrayal, cattiness, and shopping are recurring themes; teens drink and smoke. One high school student has an affair with her teacher; another is bulimic. The mystery is about the death of a seventh-grade girl found under a slab of concrete in her back yard.
Is It Any Good?
The book had potential, the cliffhanger ending was great, and the scary omnipotence of the mysterious character called "A" could have been unnerving. Instead, "A" comes off as annoying and the book is so full of name brands that it detracts from the rest of the story. Many teen girls will love the drama and fashion of the book, while parents will probably roll their eyes and worry about the bad behavior and materialism on display.
PERFECT is the third installment in the Pretty Little Liars series. Set against a backdrop of luxury and privilege, this novel has typical mean girls and their problems. Hanna's bulimic, Aria's having an affair with her teacher, Spencer's having flashbacks that make her look nuts, and Emily's having trouble coming to terms with being a lesbian.
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Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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