VIRTUALLY PERFECT by Sadie Mills started off with a little bang, but fizzled out before it got out of the starting gate.

Virtually Perfect is a dark romantic comedy novel set in Brighton, England, exploring the world of internet dating. Auctioneer, Evelyn Blake, needs a plus one for her colleagues’ wedding. No one likes rocking up to those things alone. Far from a bar bunny, she lands on an internet dating website. Amongst all the bare-chested mirror shots and men-with-no-neck, one dating profile stands out.

Shutterman has been single for a while (since walking in on his fiancée and best friend in the throes in his own bed). Years of hard work, one fluke Mont Blanc shot, and photographer Benjamin Macy finds himself catapulted to fame and fortune. Handsome, young, rich and accomplished, he’s the ultimate bachelor. Far from the smackheads and shootings of the Deptford tower block where he grew up, the past he tries so hard to hide.

I felt the book was a little long and frankly, a little boring. Using the book blurb as a guide, I was under the impression the book would be dark, but funny. The two protagonists had a load of baggage between them and more than once, I thought about not finishing the book. As I struggled through the book, I began to feel the book cover accurately depicted the story quite well.

There were some funny and true antidotes found…

I thought the author jumped around enough that at times I had a difficult time following the story. Also, when a different language, such as the French in the book, is used, a translation is needed. Not everyone speaks more than one language and authors need to incorporate translations.

There were some funny and true antidotes found, especially in the beginning. The reader can aptly understand the on-line dating scene through the description. “You can find all kinds of men on dating sites. Tall men, short men,…We’re starting with looks, because that’s where it always starts. Women complain about men objectifying us – making judgments based solely on our looks. The fact is we’re just as guilty, we’re just more subtle about it. Not to say you have be Brad Pitt, but the sad truth is if you’re a Danny Devito messaging a Charlize Theron, no matter how witty your opening or fabulous your profile, when we say we’re going to catch you later, trust me on this one: we’re not.”

Internet dating is a fascinating subject and the author could have expounded for chapters on the subject, but chose not to. VIRTUALLY PERFECT didn’t explore the intricacies of internet dating and I think the author missed a great opportunity to do so. I am giving VIRTUALLY PERFECT three stars. The grammar wasn’t bad, and I think that somewhere in the midst of all the baggage is a great story.

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About the Reviewer

Donna McBroom-Theriot
Writer. Book Reviewer. Southern Lady. Connoisseur of Chocolate. My Life is like an episode of "I love Lucy!" I'm a writer, book reviewer, and a Southern Lady who loves her Sweet Tea. My blog, My Life. One Story at a Time. is where I've been writing short stories since 2009. As luck would have it, the very first short story I wrote was published within months of my writing it. This quote pretty much sums me up: "Deep in my heart, I know there’s no promise I’ll be free from trouble in this life. In fact, I’m usually either getting out of trouble, currently in trouble, or about to meet trouble around the next corner." Well, you know that old saying, "The road to Hell is paved with good intentions" - that road is usually the one I'm on! And, as much I used to mock (we all grow up eventually) the Cajun dialect, 15 years ago, I found myself marrying the sweetest Cajun boy - complete with the requisite white trawl boots and a trawl boat. I love writing stories about the South and life with our two German Shepherds, and the four kids who meander in and out of our lives as they live their own journeys. Most days you'll find me out on the front porch swing, with the dogs at my feet, a tall glass of sweet iced tea close by, and a good book. It's what life in the South is all about. - See more at: