Potter, Ellen. Pish Posh. 2006. 166p. Scholastic Inc.
For Ages: 9-12 years
11-year-old Clara Frankofile lives in the ultra-trendy world of the Pish Posh restaurant in Manhattan. Sitting at her special table, in her ubiquitous black dress and sunglasses, Clara can make or break a person’s reputation by announcing them as somebody or nobody.
Clara declares Dr. Piff a nobody and has him kicked out of the restaurant. But Dr. Piff’s words that Clara “doesn’t see what’s happening” haunt her. When a twelve-year-old jewel thief robs her, Clara decides to take a go beyond her restaurant world and solve a mystery at the Pish Posh.
A short fun read for a precocious kid whose reading level isn’t quite up to their love of a complicated story. Clara’s world is fantastic. Her apartment has a real rollercoaster, her own beach, an ice skating rink, and a real live climbing tree. Clara’s journey to discover herself is interesting. The final mystery explanation rambles on a bit and is somewhat gory for elementary school kids. Still, precocious kids like Clara probably won’t be fazed by the gore and will enjoy the adult-like aspects of the mystery, as well as the way Clara has an adult-like freedom but is still really just a kid at heart.