Title: Chain Reaction (Perfect Chemistry #3)
Author: Simone Elkeles
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Release Date: August 16, 2011
Luis Fuentes has always been sheltered from the gang violence that nearly destroyed his brothers' lives. But that didn't stop him from taking risks--whether he's scaling a mountain in the Rockies or dreaming of a future as an astronaut, Luis can't stop looking for the next thrill.Nikki Cruz lives her life by three rules--boys lie to get their way, don't trust a boy who says "I love you," and never date a boy from the south side of Fairfield. Her parents may be from Mexico, but as a doctor's daughter, she has more in common with her north-side neighbors than the Latino Blood at her school. Then she meets Luis at Alex's wedding, and suddenly, she's tempted to break all her rules.Getting Nikki to take a chance on a south sider is Luis's biggest challenge, until he finds himself targeted by Chuy Soto, the new head of the Latino Blood. When Chuy reveals a disturbing secret about Luis's family, the youngest Fuentes finds himself questioning everything he's ever believed to be true. Will his feelings for Nikki be enough to stop Luis from entering a dark and violent world and permanently living on the edge.
Simone Elkeles is a genius. I love the stories she writes, especially how raw and gritty they are. But more than anything what I love are the Fuentes brothers. They are absolutely fantastic and I am sad that their story is now over.
When it comes to the Fuentes boys, Luis has always been the good brother. Unlike his older brothers Alex and Carlos, Luis has stayed away from the gang life that almost got them both killed. Luis has a goal and a plan to reach that goal, except that his constant search for a new adrenaline rush may cause him to lose everything. And if that doesn't do it, then maybe Nikki will make Luis throw all his plans out the window. Nikki may look Mexican, but she has nothing to do with everyone who comes form the south side of Fairfield. And she also doesn't let any boys closer to her heart because they always end up breaking it. But then Luis shows up in town and Nikki is tempted to break all the rules she's followed for her whole life. For Luis, getting Nikki to trust him may be his biggest adrenaline rush yet, that is until the Latino Blood comes knocking on his door. Now Luis has to choose between his dreams and the girl he loves, or doing what almost got his family killed once.
I absolutely loved this story. Simon Elkeles is definitely a master at writing raw and gritty stories. I had very high expectations for Chain Reaction and it completely delivered. Though I have to admit that Perfect Chemistry is still my favorite book in this series, probably just because it was the first one I read. But that doesn't mean that this one wasn't absolutely great. I especially liked how elements from the other books were incorporated into this one. But mostly it was the perfect conclusion to this series, everything came full circle and everything came to a close.
The Fuentes brothers are probably my favorite fictional boys. And Luis may just be my favorite Fuentes brother. He was always so different from Alex and Carlos, he was the good little brother. But the more I got to know him, the more I came to realize he wasn't what he appeared to be. For starters, fearless doesn't even begin to describe him. Though he was really cocky more than anything else. But it wasn't overdone and it didn't stop me from totally loving him. Nikki was also very interesting and different from the other women in this series. I loved getting to know her and I could totally see where she was coming from. Most of all I loved seeing her come out of her shell and learn to trust Luis. That was probably the best part of her character. And of course I loved getting to see Alex and Brittany, and Carlos and Kiara. The best part was probably the wedding scene.
Chain Reaction was the perfect ending to an incredible series. I can't wait for more books from Simone Elkeles. But most of all, I will miss the Fuentes brothers.