Finding Perfect: Novel Giveaway Winners

Posted in Giveaway: Educators, Giveaway: Librarians



Middle Grade Novel Giveaway (Past)

For Educators, Librarians & Organizations
Serving Grades 03-07
We gave away 24 copies thanks to FSG!





Finding Perfect
By Elly Swartz
Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN-13: 9780374303129
Age Range: 8 – 12 Years

To twelve-year-old Molly Nathans, perfect is:

—The number four
—The tip of a newly sharpened No. 2 pencil
—A crisp white pad of paper
—Her neatly aligned glass animal figurines

What’s not perfect is Molly’s mother leaving the family to take a faraway job with the promise to return in one year. Molly knows that promises are sometimes broken, so she hatches a plan to bring her mother home: Win the Lakeville Middle School Poetry Slam Contest. The winner is honored at a fancy banquet with white tablecloths. Molly is sure her mother would never miss that. Right…?

But as time passes, writing and reciting slam poetry become harder. Actually, everything becomes harder as new habits appear, and counting, cleaning, and organizing are not enough to keep Molly’s world from spinning out of control. In this fresh-voiced debut novel, one girl learns there is no such thing as perfect.

“First-time author Swartz creates a clear, moving portrayal of obsessive-compulsive disorder through the authentic voice of middle schooler Molly Nathans.” —Publishers Weekly
“With middle school friendships and family relationships at its heart, this novel offers an empathetic guide to coping with a mental health issue…Swartz adds to the growing list of fiction titles that raise awareness of differences and promote acceptance; a strong purchase for most middle grade and middle school collections.” —SLJ
“With intense and insightful depictions of Molly’s thoughts and subsequent actions, Swartz renders Molly’s decline into full-blown OCD visceral and sympathetic; readers with similar tendencies will relate while others, like her friends, will recognize the pain of seeing someone in need but not being able to help. This is a powerful but not overpowering novel, informing audiences about OCD with tact and acceptance through an accessible and relateable cast of characters…This is one for preteens struggling with the desire for perfection in this imperfect life.” —BCCB
“This lightly and sensitively written debut is a candid portrayal of what it might be like for a child living with obsessive-compulsive disorder…the exploration of OCD is thorough and compelling, and the book is as well researched (including a list of consulted resources) as it is gently written.”—Booklist



You can help your readers explore the layers of identity – both public and private – with a series of writing prompts. The responses to the prompts, written in tiny spaces on a provided template, are folded and tucked to create a private exploration of the layers of self.
The Unfolding Identity Project


Bruno-Pyatt School, Everton, AK
Yolo County Library – Davis Branch, Davis, CA
Bandini Neighborhood Library, Commerce, CA
Westminster Public Library, Westminster, CO
Armstrong State University, Savannah, GA
Karen Acres Elementary School, Urbandale, IA
Batavia Public Library, Batavia, IL
Southwestern Middle School, Hanover, IN
Library, Brandenburg, KY
Patrick Taylor Science & Technology Academy, Avondale, LA
Mary Snow School Library, Bangor, ME
Mast Landing School, Freeport, ME
Lyon Township Public Library, South Lyon, MI
UN International School Upper School Library, New York, NY
Leach Public Library, Wahpeton, ND
SWON Libraries Consortium, Blue Ash, OH
Toledo Lucas County Public Library, Toledo, OH
Greensburg Salem School District, Greensburg, PA
Cordova Branch Library, Cordova, TN
Richmond County Middle School, Warsaw, VA
St. Thomas School, Medina, WA
Mount Horeb High School, Mount Horeb, WI
Wildwood Middle School, Shenandoah Junctinn, WV


  1. Thanks for the opportunity to win this book. It looks very interesting.

    • It is heartbreaking and lifting…

  2. Sounds amazing… thanks for this opportunity!

    • Thanks for being a part of it!

  3. I got my copy today! Excited to read it and recommend it to my patrons. Thank you so much.

    • Hooray!!

  4. Thank you so much. My students are loving this book and I do too.

    • I am SO pleased a copy ended up with you. I know the author does fabulous Skype visits!

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