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Vintage Veronica Hardcover – March 9, 2010

4.4 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Realistic fiction for tweens
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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Almost 16, Veronica has lied about her age to get a job at the largest used-clothing store in the Northeast (“The Original Dollar-a-Pound!”). Veronica separates the wheat from the chaff, marking the true vintage for the “Real Deal” floor. Despite her weight, Veronica has an eye for fashion, which manifests itself in crinolines and bowling shirts (together) and sketching. She catches the eye of several of her coworkers, including mean girls Zoe and Ginger and a thin, twitchy guy she thinks of as the Nail. In her first novel, Perl masterfully sets her scene. The store, with its giant chute dumping clothes into “the pile” for the customers (aka “the pickers”), is almost a character in itself. But the author is also quite adept at writing people, especially the reptile-loving Nail, whose rejections and longings match Veronica’s. With her pigtails, bulk, and hybrid outfits, it’s hard to envision Veronica as the fashion icon others admire. But her story is filled with emotions (and language!) that are both earthy and real, and a romance that’s as complicated as it is sweet. Grades 9-12. --Ilene Cooper

Review

Review, School Library Journal, February 2010:
"The protagonist is a self-described “fat girl” who is not obsessed with losing weight–a much-needed character in young adult fiction. An enjoyable read filled with quirky characters."

Review, Booklist, February 2010:
"In her first novel, Perl masterfully sets her scene."
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 710L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (March 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375859233
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375859236
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,860,088 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Sara VINE VOICE on May 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover
When I first read the plot summary for VINTAGE VERONICA, I classified it as a cute and didn't really expect it to have any depth, but that first impression was entirely off! Erica Perl has written a novel full of quirky characters that captured my heart and has managed to tell a story that the Veronica in all of us can relate to.

The setting and characters of VV were colorful and utterly unforgettable. The only way that I can really describe the feel of the book as is off beat. The easiest way I can describe the novel is by referencing Ellen Page films, like JUNO and WHIP IT. The characters in those films are quirky and seem to stick in your mind as if held there by superglue. Veronica is the star of the novel, but I was most drawn to Len, the mysterious and awkward stock boy. He is so much more than what he seems when the reader is briefly introduced to him at the beginning of the novel. I loved discovering the magic of Len as Veronica spends more time with him. I really liked that he isn't the normal heartthrob character or the tortured bad boy; he's just Len - and that's all he needs to be.

Given that I adore Len, it is understandable that I'm a fan of the romance between him and Veronica. However, it wasn't simply my feelings about Len's character that pulled me into their love story, it was the truthfulness. Len and Veronica's relationship is not perfect, but it is awkward, painful, and so, so tender. There are some romances that take you by storm and you are so totally enraptured in one another that there really isn't very much awkwardness. This is not the case in VV, partly because Veronica tries so hard to keep a cool head about the whole situation and doesn't allow herself to be overwhelmed by her feelings, in the beginning at least.
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Format: Hardcover
I related to this first novel by Erica Perl in so many ways. The lonely "fat girl" told the story from her point of view but Perl has an amazing ability to use Veronica's voice to describe the mean girls, "geeky" boys and struggling parents in a way that makes us relate to all of them - and understand why they act the way they do. Veronica's voice was pitch perfect - lonely but strong and I fell in love with her character almost immediately. Her first true love affair with the "Nail" was sweet and innocent and real. There are no stereotypes in this book - everyone will surprise you.

It is very difficult to believe that this is Perl's debut novel. I also think a mature fifth grader could read this book.
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Format: Hardcover
Don't you just love it when a book surprises you in such a way that it blows you away? I know I do, so I was so glad when I discovered this was the case for Vintage Veronica, Erica S. Perl's debut YA novel.

Vintage Veronica has a lot going for it, in my opinion, since it contains funny, adorable, and relatable main characters, a setting that's catchy, leaving it to be a place that not only Erica brought to life with her writing but one I would love to visit if was real, and a plot that ended up surprising me in more than one aspect, a trait I wasn't expecting to find in this.

I've read in other reviews that some found Veronica hard to relate to, but I found it to be the opposite case between me and her, since I felt that her issues were universal. Because who hasn't felt a lack of trust towards others? Or have been hurt badly with past friendships? Or felt they can never live up to the mold their parent(s) want them to fit? I know I can relate to a least one of those, and I have feeling many others can as well. Further more, her relationship with Len, called Dead Boy Walking or The Nail, was something I really enjoyed about Vintage Veronica. Since not only was it another one of those cutesy type romances but he, along with Bill (a character who surprised me), taught her some valuable life lessons, one's that she truly needed to hear. Lastily, I liked how her friendships with the floorines, Ginger and Zoe, explored toxic friendships and how even while you may think someone may be perfect, in all truth, they probably aren't, far from it actually.

The plot of this was fun as well.
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Format: Hardcover
Talk about a book that will put you through the gauntlet...Vintage Veronica was definitely a surprise to me to say the least. I didn't think it was possible to undergo feeling so many different emotions throughout the reading of a book and yet at the same time have the underlying tone remain so light and easy to read. As a debut YA author, Perl has impressed me with her writing and story telling ability.

Some parts of the novel had me laughing out loud, which doesn't happen often. Veronica and the Nail trying on vintage clothing is a prime example. Some parts had me cringing as Veronica's mom's talks with her inevitably almost always circled back to her weight watcher's points system. It was just so easy to feel a part of the story and the characters that all of these feelings and emotions...well it was like I was there experiencing each and every one of the situations first hand along with the characters themselves.

There were, however, times throughout the novel that I really just wanted to shake Veronica. Anything to get her to wake up to the reality of the actions of the characters she interacted with and the consequences that were inevitably going to follow. There were many points in the story when I truly had a hard time liking her at all. This was new for me, usually a female protagonist is easy to relate to and like quickly, but Veronica was constantly pushing me to the edge of my patience. It was at the same time though that I realized Perl displays an uncanny ability to portray the characters she created so realistically that you can't help but take part in their journey with them. When Veronica was disappointed at herself and her actions, I was disappointed with her as well.
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