On top of that, just like in the book How to Be Single, these reflections do not conclude with a brilliant, never before thought of statement (which would have done nothing but turn off readers). Quite the contrary; life is about learning more and more each day, and just like How to Be Single provides a great sounding board for single girls to reflect on their situation, Perfect on Paper is a great sounding board for the recently dumped to pick themselves up and try again.
By the same token, the best thing about this protagonist is that she is so perfectly imperfect. Waverly is the real deal without being ridiculously so. She is the woman who walks out of the bathroom with toilet paper stuck to the bottom of her shoe, yet doesn’t go into the ridiculous, over-the-top, tripping-and-falling-flat-on-your-face cliché.
The ending, however, was unfortunately too cliché for my taste and dimmed the book for me. Perhaps if it hadn’t been overdone, it would have passed muster; but as it currently stands, I find that the ending is a big contrast to what the rest of the book seemed to be saying.
The message after all is a powerful one: you are good enough if you try hard, not if you get accolades from those around you, and certainly not because you are or aren’t single. It’s also an important message in a society obsessed with image, all the more that the quality of the image doesn’t matter as much anymore as its exposure.
This book has already picked up a couple of prizes and garnered attention in others, including being named a finalist in the 2009 National Indie Excellence Awards, being a winner of the 2008 DIY book festival for genre-based fiction, and being named Book Bloggers Top 10 winner for Women’s Literature in 2008.
But I think that the best prize this book can get is to inspire countless women to reflect on their own lives, accept who they are and make the best of it to make their own lives perfectly imperfect.