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A Place Called Perfect

(Perfect #1)

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  2,778 ratings  ·  398 reviews
Violet never wanted to move to Perfect.

Who wants to live in a town where everyone has to wear glasses to stop them going blind? And who wants to be neat and tidy and perfectly behaved all the time?

But Violet quickly discovers there's something weird going on – she keeps hearing noises in the night, her mum is acting strange and her dad has disappeared.

When she meets Boy sh
Paperback, 368 pages
Published August 1st 2017 by Usborne (first published November 2012)
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Average rating 4.02  · 
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 ·  2,778 ratings  ·  398 reviews

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Helena Duggan
Jan 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Recommends it for: Children and Adults
Ok so I would give my own book 5 stars!?

I am not going to review Perfect as I have a feeling I may be biased! Instead, I will give a bit of a background into the ideas behind the book...

I first starting thinking about this story when I bought a pair of old bifocal glasses in an antique shop in Australia. I loved them, and still carry them everywhere with me. I had contemplated taking out the glass and replacing it with my own prescription...That notion started me on the train of thought for this
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Can I give 8 out of 5 stars?

From the beginning, halfway until the end, everything is just bonded amazingly!!
I know there are lots of books out there about bravery, family, friendship, but this book surely had my heart from page 1. It’s written beautifully, it full of adventures, it’s so tense, spooky, creepy, full of imagination, great pace, great storyline, it’s atmospheric, okay like literally everything is just SO GOOOOD!

This book made my eye teary, made m
Whispering Stories
Nov 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Book reviewed by Stacey on

The town of Perfect was run by the Archer Twins, George and Edward. Just like the place name, everything was perfect, except for one thing, all the residents went blind not long after arriving and needed special pink rimmed/rose tinted glasses to be able to see again.

Dr. Eugene Brown was a top Ophthalmologist, (eye surgeon), and had been headhunted by the Archers to fix the problem. Eugene moved to Perfect with his wife Rose, and ten year old d
Rachel Hall
Nov 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
A Place Called Perfect is an enchanting mystery novel with a plucky young heroine in the form of ten-year-old only child, Violet Brown, who is uprooted from her home and forced to move when her father, ophthalmologist Doctor Eugene Brown, is headhunted for a prestigious position in the town of Perfect. The family are welcomed to their new residence by brothers, George and Edward Archer, who are her father’s new bosses and are employing him in an effort to rid the town of the eye defect that ever ...more
The Librarian Witch
Aug 21, 2017 rated it liked it
This book had such a promising start and has such an interesting premise for a story.

And have you seen that cover?!
It's gorgeous!

Unfortunately I found myself getting bored and struggling to plough through it after about the halfway mark.
I found the story was starting to drag. Things were happening too slowly for my liking and I just wanted everything to hurry up already!

However, this may be because of my age more than anything.
I think it would be a really great book for ages 10 - 13 ish.

The s
Ammie (Ammie's Book Obsession)


Cover Rating

Book Rating

**Thanks to USBORNE for providing me a physical review copy**

For the lovers of Fantasy, here comes a new inventive tale of strength, courage and magic.

This was definitely a brilliant book, quite creepy but still amazing, with some incredible characters and an enticing yet unique plot.

Welcome to Perfect, a town anything but...

Image result for magic gif

Violet Brown has never ever wanted be perfect and she definitely neve
Feb 17, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Helena Duggan is a graphic designer based in Kilkenny and this is her debut novel aimed at readers age 9+ although it would be equally enjoyed by adults who enjoy magical tales.

Only child Violet Brown finds her life disrupted when her parents decide to up sticks and move to a town called Perfect. Her optician father has been offered an almost perfect job in this new location and despite her misgivings, Violet must do as she is told. The strange thing is that everyone in Perfect wears peculiarly
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2019-reads

I really enjoyed this, the plot & concept were great, the story & the writing were well-written.

But I had an issue with the book and I think the review down below explains it perfectly:
A Place Called Perfect is Helena Duggan's debut novel and is the book #1 in this new series. The book is aimed at young adults, but is also suitable for adults who enjoy reading fantasy. A thoroughly enjoyable read. I do want to read about what happens next, so hopefully the wait for book #2 will not be long.

Violet Brown and her parents Eugene and Rose, move to Perfect. Perfect is a perfect town, with perfect citizens who drink perfect tea, but if they take off their special rose tinted glasses,
A cute fun adventure with two little 12 year olds that live in a town where everything is perfect from all aspects. All is good and dandy and everyone is happy but there is a bit of a catch, no one thinks for themselves; they just believe whatever they are being told by the Archer twins who are not as nice as they may seem. After her dad’s disappearance, Violet will not sit and do nothing when she knows something is wrong with this town and it’s creators. Boy wants justice for the no-man-landers ...more
May 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
So much fun - really creepy and atmospheric. Can't wait to read the next book in the series.
Oct 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Another version of this review can be found here.

Received in exchange for an honest review from Usborne Publishing UK

A Place Called Perfect, the middle-grade debut of graphic designer Helena Duggan, follows the story of Violet Brown who finds life as she knows it thrown up in air as her parents decide to move to a place called Perfect. Her father, a renowned ophthalmologist had been offered an attractive new job in this strange little town and Violet can do nothing but agree to this sudden turn
Geoff Lynas
Aug 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 9-12
Had a bit of a struggle getting through this after a promising start. It felt repetitive, over-long and I gradually lost my engagement with it. The pace felt off and the characters didn't seem to grow, particularly Boy. Two stars seems harsh, but according to Goodreads that means 'it was ok' and three means 'I like it'. So it has to be two. Sorry.
One chapter more
Apr 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
From the beautiful cover to a fascinating story, A place called Perfect has put a spell on my heart and made me fall in love with this trilogy.

I love books like these; they sneak upon you and won't let go until you read all of them and tell all your friends about them. I can't wait to have kids and introduce them to the world of magic the middle-grade books bring.
Marie the Librarian
Nov 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a solid and entertaining fantasy book. The town of Perfect isnt as perfect as it may sound like, and thankfully Violet sees this. Cause she reads books and has a strong imagination. Some of the plottwists are a bit easily spotted but it was still a very enjoyable and exciting ride. Also those eyeplants are CREEPY.
A place called Perfect, a Perfect town for Perfect citizens.... or is it?

I am still a bit emotional as this was a terrific book, so bear with me while I try to write a review.

This was an absolutely delightful, charming, magical book, with mystery, with wonderful characters, and beautiful worldbuilding (I could just imagine Perfect, No-Man's-Land, everything, I saw myself walking through the town, running alongside of the orphans, Boy, and Violet) . I already loved the book just for the cover, b
Dec 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Certainly a 5 Star Young Adult read, probably 4 Star for Adults.

Every now and again I like to vary the books that I read. Although I particularly enjoy modern women's fiction, I do like to try a few other genres. Over the past few years I've been really impressed by the quality of Young Adult fiction that is appearing, I wish this sort of story had been around when I was growing up.

A Place Called Perfect is Helena Duggan's debut novel and I would say it is aimed at readers aged 10 plus, although
Aug 18, 2018 rated it liked it
i really wanted to LOVE this.i mean look at the cover-it’s easily on of the prettiest books that i own.middle grade,pretty cover and a delightfully pretty story-it was supposed to be a Perfect read (see,what i did there teehe) but if just wasn’t.i didn’t connect with Violet at all,i didn’t get to know Violet at all.same with was a quirky story,but i just couldn’t get to i am sad,because i never give middle grade books less than 4 stars and this one was more of a 2.5 ⭐️ still if you ...more
May 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was pretty close to perfect indeed. We follow Violet as she moves to a new town, in which everyone wears special glasses to stop them from going blind. And everyone in town behaves weirdly, 'perfect'. Her mom starts to change, and then her dad disappears. It is up to Violet to save the day.

What makes this book stand out is its mystery and creepy atmosphere. Like being checked on while you sleep, disappearing people, plants that grow actual eyes and bleed when you pick them, a haunted g
Dec 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Много хубава книжка!

“Are you sure this plan will work?” Merrill asked.
“Of course Mr. Marx,” Violet replied, “Nothings ever difficult for children, adults are much more complicated…”
Apr 19, 2020 rated it liked it
⭐ ⭐ ⭐

It wasn't as good as I expected it to be, but the story overall was still pretty fun. Just didn't really feel much for the main character, Violet.
Feb 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
‘It was as if everyone in Perfect was under a spell.’

This is a children’s tale by debut Irish writer and graphic designer Helena Duggan who has also designed the distinctive and apt cover artwork that illustrates her book's cover herself.

Violet Brown’s optician father is offered an attractive new job and the family moves to a town called Perfect. Violet is very reluctant to move, and doesn’t like the sound of the place at all. Ten-year-old Violet finds the place very peculiar; how can everything
Jun 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: acquired-2018
I think I read one of my favourite books of the year.
This story is so much fun, intriguing, original and just really really good.
This book was a hidden gem. I mean it.

We start with Violet, who, with her parents moves to Perfect. She never wanted to, she loved her old city. Her father is an eye surgeon, and he was also on the cover of the 'Eye Spy' magazine. That's when the Archers, who live in the town of Perfect, call.

The Archers are twins. They are perfect. Perfect loves them. And they just... steal imaginations. Not a big deal, right?

Well, tell the people without their imagination that the sky is falling, and they'll b
May 29, 2018 rated it did not like it
Not a bad story exactly, but it irritated the life out of me and (to a lesser extent) my son. Violet apparently can’t do, think or act without getting an order or at least confirmation from Boy. She’s supposed to be the primary heroine (I assume) but defers constantly to being told what to do by Boy. It drove me bloody crazy. Then at several points through the book, the author explicitly raises the fact that Violet is ‘only a girl’ to no apparent purpose; she doesn’t then suggest that being a gi ...more
Story of a Book Reader
Oops, I did it again. I bought a book because of the cover. And I ended up not liking it. Disappointed even. Will I ever learn? Never judge a book by it's cover.
I liked the idea of it. I wish it had more of a fantasy element instead of a scientific one. The characters were dull and annoying. I was just utterly bored throughout the whole lenght of the book. The plot seemed too slow at some points, and too rushed in others. It felt both too long and yet, not developed enough.
Look at that cover t
Jadey (the Bookish)
This story started off really well, the creepy vibes were just so good. It sort of reminded me of a Series of Unfortunate Events which is a series I love.

However, as the plot progressed, I became disenchanted. The dialogue between Violet and Boy was really frustrating to read, there was just so much anger there and unnecessary emphasis on gender. Something that grated on me so much that fully made this book lose a star in its rating, was the excessive use of 'snapped' as a verb. I started to not
Nov 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Thanks to the Publisher for sending me a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

Let’s talk about that gorgeous cover for a moment! I’m a sucker for beautiful covers and this one is so incredibly done by the artist. Not just the cover but the map and the inside of the cover is just as much gorgeous and gives you a better insight of the world, which, I found really helpful!

The book is about Violet who moves into this town Perfect with her parents and the town is run by two brothers, George
Aug 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A Place Called Perfect by Helena Duggan is the Waterstone’s Children’s Book of the Month for August and what a perfect choice it is too.  With beautiful cover illustration by Karl James Mountford, this 9 to 12 years fiction is a perfectly creepy tale that will absolutely delight the MG literature market.  

Violet Brown arrives in Perfect when her ophthalmologist father is employed by the town to try and cure their ‘blindness’ issue.  Set over the span of a few weeks we see Violet in a race agains
Feb 28, 2018 rated it liked it
There’s just something about eerily “perfect” towns that I’m an absolute sucker for...

Seriously, though, this book was so much fun and had just the right amounts of eerie and dark as you delve a bit deeper into the secrets of this town called Perfect. The only reason I’m giving this a three-star rating is that the writing is definitely more on the juvenile side—more than I’m ordinarily used to tolerating in a middle grade, that is. There are certain repetitive phrases that get a bit tiring and j
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Helena Duggan is from Kilkenny, a medieval, haunted city in the south of Ireland. She's pretty old, like 31 or something but her friends say she's never grown up, so like she's probably really only 13 in brain years. She writes stories for people her brain age and they are always full of adventure cause she gets bored really easy. She's also a graphic designer, that means she draws pictures for a ...more

Other books in the series

Perfect (3 books)
  • The Trouble with Perfect (Perfect, #2)
  • The Battle for Perfect (Perfect, #3)

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