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The Perfect Place

The Perfect Place

Illustrated by Paola Escobar


The Perfect Place

About the Book

From the Newbery Medal-winning author of Last Stop on Market Street comes this moving picture book about the perils of perfectionism.

Lucas goes to the perfect school in the perfect neighborhood. But life at home is not so perfect. His dad’s old work truck stalls in front of the school. The electricity is out when he gets home, and he doesn’t even have time to show his mom his report (on which he received a perfect score) before she rushes off to her night job.

That night, Lucas dreams of a strange light, which he follows down the fire escape, into the alleyway, clear out of his neighborhood, all the way to the place where the perfect people live. Everything there is more beautiful than he could have imagined. But is it possible things aren’t as perfect as they seem?

This lyrical, richly illustrated picture book highlights the beauty to be found in even the humblest of homes and in a family that may not be materially rich but is rich in love.

Product Details

On sale: May 7, 2024
Age: 4-8 years
Grade: Preschool - 3
Page count: 32 Pages
ISBN: 9780593325636

Author Bio

Matt de la Peña is the Newbery Medal–winning author of Last Stop on Market Street. He is also the author of the award–winning picture books Patchwork, Milo Imagines the World, Carmela Full of Wishes, Love,
and A Nation’s Hope: The Story of Boxing Legend Joe Louis, as well as a number of critically acclaimed young adult novels. Matt teaches creative writing and visits schools and colleges throughout the country. You can visit Matt at mattdelapena.com, or follow him on Twitter and Instagram @mattdelapena.

Paola Escobar is a graphic designer and illustrator from Colombia. She is the illustrator of the picture books Giant-Sized Butterflies on My First Day of School; Planting Stories: The Life of Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré; Digging for Words: José Alberto Gutiérrez and the Library He Built; and Queen of Tejano Music: Selena, as well as the middle grade Pages & Co. series. Follow her on Instagram @paoesco8ar.


Praise for The Perfect Place:

“Digital illustrations by Escobar (A Plate of Hope) juxtapose the warmth of Lucas’s metropolitan neighborhood against a brightly oppressive alternate realm as Newbery Medalist de la Peña weighs perfectionism against the messiness of real-life love—'the right kind of imperfect.'” —Publishers Weekly, starred review