How My Stomach Got Pumped: The Rest of the Perfect Chemistry Series by Simone Elkeles

I used to think I had a high tolerance for garbage.  I read twelve of the House of Night books.  Finished Collen Houck’s stupidity that was before I read The Perfect Chemistry series.

Maybe part of the problem was that I binge read the last two books in the series, but it’s not my fault the library decided to put both of these gems in my box the other day.  And I thought it might be better not dragging this little experiment out for a couple more months.  Of course, now that I’ve actually read them my brain and my liver sort of hate my logical sense of self.



When Carlos Fuentes returns to America after living in Mexico for a year, he doesn’t want any part of the life his older brother, Alex, has laid out for him at a high school in Colorado. Carlos likes living his life on the edge and wants to carve his own path—just like Alex did. Then he meets Kiara Westford. She doesn’t talk much and is completely intimidated by Carlos’ wild ways. As they get to know one another, Carlos assumes Kiara thinks she’s too good for him, and refuses to admit that she might be getting to him. But he soon realizes that being himself is exactly what Kiara needs right now.

Source: GoodReads

Carlos Fuentes is probably the biggest asshole out of the Fuentes brothers.

In fact, if you want to have a drinking game for Rules of Attraction, more than likely it would be him being an asshole.  Though you’d probably be dead.

Funny thing, Simone Elkeles drinking games have a tendency of doing that.

Killing any participants of drinking games.

Because everything she does wrong is so over the top wrong.  I almost think she’s unintentionally trolling with these books.

While not as overt with the stereotypes as the other two books in the series, it’s probably the most covert of using horrible stereotypes.  Mainly the fact, that Carlos Fuentes is the definition of a stereotypical Latino Alpha male.  And it sucks big time.

He reminded me a lot of Ramon.

Ramon if he was French and a Disney character.

Who is Ramon, might you ask?  The most egotistical and offensive  contemporary romance novel character I’ve ever made.  But at least Judith McNaught had the excuse of the time period she wrote her book in.

Elkeles doesn’t.

I wondered if she was trying to have an even more jerk of a character than Alex, because if that was the case oh how she did succeed.

Carlos makes Alex look like a gentleman.  And if you’ve read my previous review…well, you know how I feel about Alex.

Apart from Carlos though, this book was better than its predecessor.  Though bland, Kiara wasn’t terrible.  I did think she caved into Carlos a little bit fast, but at least she wasn’t an outright idiot and racist like Brittany.   I also have to begrudgingly say that I liked her family and b.f.f.  Elkeles didn’t completely fail on that part of the novel.

But the whole gang aspect.

It’s just a rehash of the first one.

And it happens again in a more ridiculous fashion in the third book.

Is it really that hard to think that other social issues might exist amongst teens of Latino origin besides gang violence?

You know, Katie McGarry contemporaries-though somewhat repetitive all have different issues to explore.  I’m sure that there are just as many issues to explore with Latino teens as there any other teens.

Though try telling that to Elkeles.

Overall Rating: D+ I liked Kiara and her family.  Carlos and the plot though…sucks big time.


Like his brothers, Luis Fuentes is a risk taker; whether he’s scaling the Rocky Mountains or dreaming of a future as an astronaut, Luis is always looking for the next thrill.

Nikki Cruz lives her life by certain rules ― don’t trust a boy who says “I love you”, boys lie to get their own way and never date a boy from the south side of Fairfield. Then she meets Luis at his brother Alex’s wedding and suddenly she’s tempted to break all her rules.

Getting Nikki to give him a chance is Luis’s biggest challenge, until he finds himself targeted by the head of the gang that nearly destroyed his brothers’ lives. Will Luis’s feelings for Nikki be enough to stop him from entering a dark and violent world that could prove to be the ultimate risk?

Source: GoodReads


By this point you’d think that that asshole Carlos had probably whipped out any sort of sensibilities I might’ve had.  But even though I might make a joke about how reading these books could send a person into liver failure, I don’t actually drink when I read them.  I just don’t have enough money to pay the hospital bills and more importantly I have to sort of review them for you.  But if you thought Carlos was bad…well, Luis is just as bad as worse.

Well, it really depends, do you prefer out right in your face assholes or sneaky bastards.

If you hate sneaky bastards more than this book is really going to piss you off more than Rules of Attraction.

It’s also going to piss you off if you hate generalizations that fuel stereotypes.

Oh yeah.

With Rules of Attraction  I got annoyed with Elkeles’s little remarks about Mexican American culture, but compared to  Chain Reaction this was nothing.

The female lead, Nikki, is Latina.  Which should be instant points for Elkeles its not based on the poor generalizations the character occurs:

1) She must be saucy because she’s Latina.

She might claim she’s a full blooded American, but I’d bet my left nut she’s got some Mexican blood running through her feisty veins. (25)

2) She must know Spanish because she’s Latina.

In regards to knowing Spanish: “All the Mexicans I know do,” he says. “Hell, a majority of Mexicans I know don’t even speak English.(213)

3) Because  Nikki lives in a fairly affluent neighborhood, doesn’t know Spanish, and doesn’t know how to make tacos she’s dissing her heritage.


I wish I could say that despite the gross generalizations the rest of the book made up for this.  But it didn’t.

Not at all.

Oh, where do I begin?

Okay, I know what I’m going to do.  I know that she’s a fictional character, but I’m going to advise Nikki to seek out a divorce lawyer when she marries Luis because girl-he’s lying to you now and he’s not going to change his mind.

Seriously.  I mean, if you really wanted to get drunk you could just take a drink every time Luis did something semi-douchey to Nikki.

Actually, you’d probably be dead so that’s not a great idea.

But maybe if you divided it by lie….

Yep, dead.

So, how can you possibly get through this installment having a drinking game and not killing yourself.

Not possible.

Because every bothersome detail, it’s going to drive you crazy.

The good news is that this book is mercifully short.

Though I really wish Nikki would’ve kicked Luis’s ass to the curb. Or at least yell at Mama Fuentes for being a horrible mother (really, someone needed to do that).

Oh, and did I mention that there was a painful Lifetime message of not having sex before marriage thrown in there complete with an over the top life time event.


Don’t even bother with this one.  Your sanity will thank you.



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