Saturday, May 26, 2012

Pish Posh

Pish Posh
Ellen Potter
June 2011

Clara Frankophile is the 11-year-old daughter of  famous restauranteurs and owners of the very exclusive restaurant, Pish Posh.  According to Clara, everyone is either a somebody or a nobody - and Clara has taken on the job of deciding into which category the patrons of her parents' restaurant belongs.  When a person is declared a nobody, they are banished from not only the restaurant but also from New York society as a whole.  Hiding behind her sunglasses, Clara remains detached from the people around her.  That is until she declares Dr. Piff to be a nobody.  As he leaves the restaurant, he whispers a mysterious message that only Clara is able to hear.  Through a series of unlikely adventures, and a sudden new friend, Clara reaches outside of her normal realm to uncover a mystery and solve a century old puzzle.

The best part of this book is not the mystery; it's learning about Clara herself.  She's been pampered but completely ignored by her well meaning but clueless parents.  She lives alone, and doesn't even know enough to miss her childhood.  I would love to read a prequel about her early childhood; there were hints of stories there that could prove to be more fascinating than this story.  Clara's transformation to thoughtful and caring child is certainly the lesson taught.  Although far-fetched and unrealistic, the mystery keeps the action moving and the plot races forward quickly.  

I would not use this book in my classroom.  However, most of my girls - especially the girly-girls - would enjoy Pish Posh very much, and I will add a copy to my classroom library.

Buy it now at Barnes & Noble.


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