THE SMELL OF OLD LADY PERFUME
by Claudia Guadalupe Martinez. Cinco Puntos Press
“Chela’s hopes are high as she enters 6th grade. She’ll be in the ‘smart’ class with her best friend, her mean-girl nemesis has moved away, and popularity seems inevitable.
“Sometimes, though, the transitions we expect are not the ones we face. Friends betray us, mean girls (it seems) are forever, and the people we love, like Chela’s wonderful father, will not always be with us. Setting her story in El Paso, Claudia Guadalupe Martinez gives us the gift of a real world, filled with authentic kids and family dynamics. Though the going is rough, Chela succeeds, and learns to trust herself in the process. Martinez’s prose, always animated and descriptive, is frequently quite beautiful. She is an author to watch.” – Cathy Jacobus