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The Smell of Old Lady Perfume

Chicago Young Adult Fiction Examiner

The Smell of Old Lady Perfume is an independent reader/YA book about a young hispanic girl and her coming of age. It's the first book by author Claudia Martinez, and one can hope that there are more to come.

Chela, the main character, is beginning sixth grade when her emotions are dealt several blows. She loses her best friend, Nora; her father suffers a stroke and her mother must begin working; and she feels less intelligent than some of her peers because her first language is Spanish.

Most of all, The Smell of Old Lady Perfume is the story of a young girl trying to find her way as life around her changes and she is powerless to control the changes. Love triumphs all and Chela learns that the love of family is something that never changes.

Awards:
Best of the Best, 2008, Chicago Public Library
Américas Award Commended Title, 2009
Texas Institute of Letters’ Best Young Adult Book Award
Paterson Prize for Books for Young People, 2009
Southwest Books of the Year Award, 2009, Pima County Public Library
ALAN’s Picks, July 2008
Hispanic Magazine Summer Must Read 2008
Latinidad’s Best Middle Grade Book of 2008
Recommended futher reading in the Spring 2009 One Book, One Chicago program
YA Top Forty, Pennsylvania School Librarians Association (PSLA)

- Pamela Kramer, May 30, 2010  Visit Website

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