Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Perfect Days by Raphael Montes

Teo Avelar is a loner. He lives with his paraplegic mother and her dog in Rio de Janeiro, he doesn't have many friends, and the only time he feels honest human emotion is in the presence of his medical school cadaver--that is, until he meets Clarice. She's almost his exact opposite: exotic, spontaneous, unafraid to speak her mind. An aspiring screenwriter, she's working on a screenplay called Perfect Days about three friends who go on a road trip across Brazil in search of romance. Teo is obsessed. He begins to stalk her, first following her to her university, then to her home, and when she ultimately rejects him, he kidnaps her and they embark upon their very own twisted odyssey across Brazil, tracing the same route outlined in her screenplay. Through it all, Teo is certain that time is all he needs to prove to Clarice that they are made for each other, that time is all he needs to make her fall in love with him. But as the journey
progresses, he digs himself deeper and deeper into a pit that he can't get out of, stopping at nothing to ensure that no one gets in the way of their life together. Both tense and lurid, and brimming with 

suspense from the very first page, Perfect Days is a psychological thriller in the vein of Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley--a chilling journey in the passenger seat with a psychopath, and the English language debut of one of Brazil's most deliciously dark young writers.

At the age of 20, he impressed critics and public alike with Roulette (Editora Benvirá), an action-packed crime novel that was a finalist in the 2010 Benvirá Literature Prize, the Brazilian National Library’s 2012 Machado de Assis Prize and the prestigious 2013 São Paulo Literature Prize, and has sold over 15 thousand copies. 

At 24, he published his second novel, Perfect Days (Companhia das Letras), which has been phenomenally successful: translation rights have been sold to 13 territories (USA, Canada, England, France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Germany, Turkey, Holland, Macau, Hong Kong and Taiwan) and it occupied bestseller lists for many weeks.

5 Creepy and Addicting Stars

I remember getting an email about this book and I thought it wasn’t for me. I’m a romance reviewer. Then I kept on going back to this email and thought to myself, the summary sounded really good. After a few days I decided to give this book a go.

Perfect Days is a creepy, but addictive thriller book. I enjoyed every second of it and I read it one sitting. It had the perfect balance of dialogue to narrative writing to plot development.  I was sucked in by the main character and I was a fan of the psycho. Because Teo Avelar is a psycho in my opinion, a justified psycho, but a psycho none the less.

Am I scaring you? Don’t be scared because it’s not a truly scary book. The thing I really liked about Perfect Days is that it was written from the mind of a kidnapper. It’s a third POV book, but Teo, the main character justifies all of his actions. And his actions are reasonable from his POV. I found this fascinating and interesting.

Teo is your average nerdy medical student. He doesn’t have ANY experience in the women department, but he’s loyal and very smart. He takes care of his mother who is in a wheel chair and he doesn’t date. He meets a nice girl and things start to spiral out of control.

She doesn’t want him, but Teo decides it’s not up to her to say no and so he accidently kidnaps her.
Gah, this book was a roller coaster of emotions. My heart was racing so fast as I was reading this book and I NEVER knew what was going to happen. To my surprise it’s a really fast pace book with tons of things going on.

Perfect Days isn’t for everyone, but it’s a book that a lot of people should take a chance on. It’s different, it’s witty and like I said a touch creepy.

It worked out for me and it might work out for you.

Lawyer and writer Raphael Montes was born in 1990, in Rio de Janeiro. His short stories have been published in several mystery anthologies, as well as magazines.


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