Halfway Perfect by Julie Cross and Mark Perini

halfway perfect by mark perini julie cross

Halfway Perfect by Julie Cross and Mark Perini

Halfway Perfect by Julie Cross, Mark Perini

Published by Sourcebooks Fire on May 5th 2015
Finished copy from Publisher
384 pages
Purchase on AmazonThe Book Depository


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?

Excited is an understatement for when I heard that Julie and Mark were co-authoring a book. This was way back when Halfway Perfect was still in the works. Now that it’s been out for months and now that I’ve finally read it, I can say it was well worth the wait and anticipation.

It’s no secret that I’m a fan of Julie Cross’s YA contemporary books and this one just further proved that I need to read everything she writes, not that I wasn’t already dead set on doing that beforehand. It also proved that Mark Perini, Halfway Perfect being his debut as an author, needs to write more books so I can read them. The duo did such a fine job making the model world that their characters were in come to life, not to mention weave such a compelling story with relatable characters.

“Maybe the only way forward is to simply move forward, one half-step at a time.”

Knowing that Mark was a model himself, I never doubted that Eve and Alex’s experiences would be anything less than believable. What I really liked about Halfway Perfect though is that it wasn’t just an insider look into the fashion scene. It made me feel like I was right there along with the characters. Aside from this, I really liked the gritty take on how underage models can be taken advantage by people in the industry.

It was easy to adore Eve, what with our shared passion for photography. I also enjoyed watching her work as an intern for her awesome mentor, Janessa. More than that, it’s the fact that she’s been through some tough shit and yet determined to move past that (with some understandable struggle of course), not let herself be defined by those awful events and work hard to achieve her dreams, that made me admire her completely.

“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.”

Meanwhile, Alex was a sweetheart. Who cares if he’s a hot model? His good guy personality in itself is enough to make you swoon. He was so unexpectedly down-to-earth and seemed especially genuine when it came to his family relationships, specifically with his fun siblings. Great charm + heart of gold- that’s Alex for you.

With how fleshed out both protagonists were, it only followed that the romance worked really well since the two also had awesome chemistry. Alex and Eve’s relationship really develops throughout the story and the challenges they had to face to achieve their HEA were so realistic.

“Everything else will work itself out. Everything else is unwritten.”

Wonderful romance, lovable characters and an enjoyable story- Halfway Perfect is equally touching and entertaining. If you want to read about the modeling industry or are looking for a quick but heartfelt read, this one is for you.

Hazel @ Stay Bookish

Hazel Ureta is an advocate of stories. She is the blogger and Editor-In-Chief of Stay Bookish because she loves talking about books. She enjoys reading Young Adult novels the most and writes them too.
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  1. Alexa S. on November 18, 2015 at 5:06 pm

    I actually think this may be the first time I’m reading a review for Halfway Perfect! It sounds interesting, particularly because it involves the modeling world, and I like the quotes you used in your post a whole lot. I’m happy to hear you really enjoyed it! It definitely makes me feel encouraged to check it out for myself.

    • Hazel @ Stay Bookish on November 19, 2015 at 1:23 am

      Then I’m glad I shared my thoughts on the blog! I actually read this awhile ago and I finally was in the mood to write a review yesterday. I don’t think there are very many books set in the model world that I know of. For that alone, I knew I had to recommend this one. :)

  2. Cait @ Paper Fury on November 19, 2015 at 3:01 am

    Eeeep! I want to read this so badddd now!! I hadn’t even heard of it before, and I am usually iffy about contemporaries BUT IT SOUNDS SO AMAZING. And I haven’t read any books about models before. *dashes for goodreads*

    • Hazel @ Stay Bookish on November 19, 2015 at 4:14 am

      Well, now you’ve heard of it. ;) So happy to hear you’re interested in the story, Cait! I hope you’ll enjoy it too, if you get to check it out.

  3. Taylor H. on November 19, 2015 at 11:25 am

    I love a good contemporary especially when its on subject I rarely read about, in this case fashion. Alex sounds so amazing, I love it when the male love interest isn’t so rude all the time. When need more lovable male mc’s! I haven’t read anything by Julie Cross but I definitely want to check this out! Awesome Review!

  4. Poulami @ Daydreaming Books on November 19, 2015 at 11:41 am

    Love your review! This seems like a great book with swoon worthy characters! Adding this to my tbr and I definitely hope I am going to read this book soooon enough! :-)

    • Hazel @ Stay Bookish on November 19, 2015 at 12:22 pm

      Aw thank you so much! Halfway Perfect is definitely that ;) I hope you like it too!

  5. Megan on November 19, 2015 at 7:44 pm

    This book sounds really interesting, especially since I find the fashion and modelling world really intriguing (I blame it on watching too much ANTM and Project Runway).

  6. Aila @ Happy Indulgence on November 20, 2015 at 6:16 pm

    I’m not a big fan of the blurb, but your review makes it sound so sweet Hazel! I’ll definitely be checking this book out when I’m looking for a photographer/model story. :) Wonderful review (and you’ve convinced me to give it a chance, haha.)

  7. Madiha @ Paper Skies on November 23, 2015 at 5:25 am

    Aw, this sounds so CUTE. I love contemporaries where there’s something new and genuine that the author brings to the scene – and woah, having a GOOD GUY model as a love interest IS unexpected. I can’t imagine what fun you must have had while reading this :) definitely a keeper!

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