Harris, Teresa E. The Perfect Place, 263 p. Clarion (Houghton), 2014. $17. Content: G (some bullying, but not physical).
Treasure’s father has walked out on them, so her mother has taken Treasure, 12, and her little sister, Tiffany, to their great aunt Grace’s home as a place to stay while Mom goes looking for Dad. Treasure refuses to believe that Dad has abandoned them, so she defies and resists and acts out at every possible moment. She doesn’t like anything about GAG (great aunt Grace) - her home, her town, or her business. A the days drag on, however, Treasure is not sure any more that the prefect place that she has built in her head is an actual place that her father is going to take them to.
For being 12 and dragged to so many different places in the middle of the night, Treasure is very naïve about her life and situation – very annoyingly so. I was seriously surprised that Grace didn’t slap either girl or force them to face the truth about their father’s midnight skedaddle – I certainly would have. When Treasure lets a known bully into her aunt’s store and let’s her ransack the place, I just threw up my hands. I had a hard time mustering up any sympathy. I would suggest Hold Fast by Blue Balliett as a better alternative.
EL – OPTIONAL. Cindy, Library Teacher