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PAST PERFECT by Leila Sales


by Leila Sales

Age Range: 11 - 14

Pub Date: Oct. 4th, 2011
ISBN: 978-1-4424-0682-7
Publisher: Simon Pulse/Simon & Schuster

Ex-boyfriend angst, new-boyfriend jitters and best-friend snits are a heck of a lot funnier when they take place at a historical-reenactment village.

Chelsea's summer job is a junior interpreter at Colonial Essex Village, where she dons floor-length petticoats to teach tourists about history (which really means pointing them toward the bathroom). The junior interpreters at Colonial Essex Village are locked in an endless War: not with the Redcoats, but with the Civil War reenactors from across the street. Those farbs at Civil War Reenactmentland ("farb," the gravest of reenactor insults, meaning sloppy and careless in historical details) have the gall to think they’re the better historical-reenactment site. Every summer, the teenage Colonials plan and implement excellent pranks on the teenage Confederates—and survive mutual pranking in return. But this year's War is more vicious than usual, and (oh, horrors) Chelsea has a crush on a Confederate reenactor. Chelsea's narration is peppered with sharp and witty observation, from her interaction with a tourist who thinks reenactors are American Girl dolls come to life to a conversation with aghast parents who insist they'll love her even if she makes the terrible, uneducated choice of choosing the Civil War over the Revolutionary.

Hilarious costumed hijinks in the spirit of Meg Cabot. (Fiction. 11-14)