Halfway Perfect by Julie Cross and Mark Perini
Published by: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication date: May 5th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Bestselling author Julie Cross teams up with Ford model Mark Perini to pen a poignant and gritty YA novel about love and the dark side of modeling and the fashion industry.
Eve’s time as a fashion model nearly destroyed her-now she’s determined to build a career behind the camera lens. But landing a coveted photography internship brings her face to face with her dark past-and her ex.
While Eve is snapping pictures, up-and-coming male model Alex is launching his career-which, for him, involves maintaining a fake relationship with his (secretly) underage co-star, Elana.
But Alex is falling for Eve, and Eve won’t let herself get hurt again. If Alex can pull off a fake love with Elana, can he convince Eve to risk a secret affair with him?
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A sweet, cute and heartfelt story about two people following their dreams while trying find themselves and figure out what’s most important in life in an environment where the top priority is appearances.
It’s rare that I pick up a Young Adult book, but the moment I saw Julie Cross’ name on the cover it was impossible for me not to pick it up. I’ve only read one of her books, Third Degree, but I completely fell for the super smart, socially awkward girl and the incredibly sweet and protective hero. Add Mark Perini’s experience in the intriguing and fascinating world of fashion and I great, insightful read.
Two years ago, Eve Castle was on the cusp of super model stardom while her personal life was in a tumultuous and improper relationship. Deciding to take her life and fate into her own hands she turns her back on the seemingly glamorous life of fashion, changes her name to Eve Nowakowski and pursues her dream of becoming a photographer leading her straight back to fashion industry.
There she meets Alex Evans, who is gaining recognition as a male model and his co-star Elana whose career is eerily similar to her own. In order to get his foot firmly in the door, Alex is directed to keep up a phony relationship with Elana, who is as under-age as his little sister!
While on set Alex and Eve are on different sides of the camera, off set Alex shares all his secrets with Eve while falling in love with her. But Eve is hiding a secret that will most likely change the dynamic between them. Can Eve face her past and share it with Alex? Will he chose the girl over his career opportunities even after knowing her deepest secret?
This story of a girl whose parents’ neglect and selfishness left her at the hands of an agent that manipulated and took advantage of her is both touching and sweet. It broke my heart reading about the abuse Even was put through. But I was thrilled with her strength, determination and self-sufficiency.
And having the story told from both points of view also let me get to know and adore Alex with his boyish charm, grounded personality and under-the-surface humility. I loved the tenderness of how he worried about Elana and how he wasn’t blinded by the lime light that he would look the other way when a wrong situation needed to be stopped. He fought for who he loved and what was right and it was completely gratifying.
“There’s so much good in him that I’m desperate to find a way to unzip him and crawl inside and let myself be even closer.”
I really enjoyed how the relationship between Alex and Eve evolved. It was natural, clever and endearing with great chemistry. And it was a nice change of pace for the to read fade to black steamy scenes.
“Kissing Alex is like getting the chance to be a kid again. It’s light and uncomplicated and exhilarating and completely consuming in a way that isn’t even a little bit scary.”
It was a delightful and I think honest book that broaches grave matters such as abusive relationships offset by friendship and romance.
This is a young adult contemporary romance novel. Stand alone told from both points of view with happy ending.
Amazon US -> http://amzn.to/1DtlUQ9
Five Facts About HALFWAY PERFECT
- Co-author, Mark Perini, was the model who portrayed the main character on Julie Cross’ Tempest series books. He’s also been on many other YA covers https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/21313153?shelf=books-i-am-on-the-cover-of
- In the book, main character, Alex books a big job modeling for Calvin Klein. CK is one of the few big designers/labels Mark hasn’t worked with (yet). Both authors are big CK fans
- co-author, Julie Cross, started out writing Eve’s chapters, and Mark writing Alex’s, but plot elements and scenes required occasional swapping
- Mark wrote parts of Halfway Perfect while in Milan, Italy for Fashion Week
- Julie has never met a model in real life, not even Mark.
Top 5 Places to Spot a Model in NYC
1) Polo Bar:
1 E 55th St
If you’re on the hunt for a model sighting look no further than Ralph Lauren’s Great Gatsby themed Polo Bar. We’re told there’s at least a one-month wait. This may be because it’s one of the hottest spots in town for Models & A-listers alike.
2) The Boom Boom Room at the Top of the Standard:
848 Washington St
If you’re looking to dance the night away in one of NYC’s most decadent and hard to get into clubs look no further than the Boom Boom Room. Come after Fashion Week and you’re almost guaranteed to rub elbows with fashion elite.
3) Sisley-Paris Boutique
343 Bleecker Street
Is a secret weapon for the top catwalkers who want glowing skin before major shows. Models no longer need to travel to Paris for Sisley’s award winning skin treatments.
421 Hudson Street
If you’re going to be a successful model you’ve got to eat-sleep and dream of the gym. So it goes without saying that the best places to spot one is at a gymnasium. Equinox is grounded in the idea of high-performance living, empowering our members to be bold, be risk takers and push their limits, inside and outside of the club. Perfect future everest rock-climbing models of all shapes and sizes.
5) Books of Wonder
18 W 18th St
Want to guarantee you’ll run into a model? Head to Books of Wonder for the launch of event May 8th 6-8 PM international model Mark Perini will be signing copies of co-authored Halfway Perfect with Julie Cross.
About the Authors
Julie Cross is the International Bestselling author of the Tempest series, a young adult science fiction trilogy which includes Tempest, Vortex, and the final installment, Timestorm (St. Martin’s Press). She’s also the author of Letters to Nowhere (8/13), a mature young adult romance set in the world of elite gymnastics, as well as several forthcoming young adult and new adult novels with publishers like Entangled, Sourcebooks, HarperCollins, and St. Martin’s Press/Thomas Dunne Books.
Julie lives in Central Illinois with her husband and three children. She’s a former gymnast, longtime gymnastics fan, coach, and former Gymnastics Program Director with the YMCA. She’s a lover of books, devouring several novels a week, especially in the young adult and new adult genres. Outside of her reading and writing credibility’s, Julie Cross is a committed–but not talented–long distance runner, creator of imaginary beach vacations, Midwest bipolar weather survivor, expired CPR certification card holder, as well as a ponytail and gym shoe addict. You can find her online via twitter, her personal website, email, facebook, Goodreads, or co-moderating the YAwriters section of reddit.
Mark Perini began his career as an international fashion model ten years ago, while simultaneously obtaining a business degree from Seton Hall University. Turns out fashion’s hurry-up-and-wait mentality lends itself quite well to writing. Mark is now a New York City based author, and Halfway Perfect is his first young adult novel. He is also a featured author in the New Adult anthology, Fifty First Times.
When he’s not working, Mark’s traveling the world. He’s made a blood pact with friends to see all seven ancient wonders of the world before he’s thirty. Four down three to go.