Picture Perfect

  • Interest Level: Grade 5 - Grade 12
  • Reading Level: Grade 7

When Ian Slater’s best friend, Teddy, suddenly vanishes, it’s up to Ian to find out what happened. He and Teddy were supposed to take photographs together on the day Teddy disappeared—but Teddy never showed up. Rumors are flying, and everyone looks to Ian for answers. Has Teddy run away, searching for the father he’s never met? Or has something more sinister happened? Ian doesn’t know, and he can’t quite remember everything that happened the day Teddy vanished. On top of that, he keeps having terrifying dreams and hearing strange voices. People are starting to say he’s acting strangely, and the sheriff keeps questioning him. As Ian tries to hold it all together and search for clues to Teddy’s disappearance, he strives to present those around him with the picture of a normal kid. But the more he finds out, the less he understands. How well does he really know Teddy? How well does he even know himself?

Format Your Price Add
Interest Level Grade 5 - Grade 12
Reading Level Grade 7
Copyright 2003
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Carolrhoda Books ®
Language English
Number of Pages 256
Publication Date 2003-08-01
Reading Counts! Level 5.8
Text Type Fiction—Mystery
BISACS JUV039030, JUV039120
Dewey [Fic]
Dimensions 5.5 x 8.25
Lexile 800
Guided Reading Level Z
ATOS Reading Level 5.1
Accelerated Reader® Quiz 74405
Accelerated Reader® Points 10.0
Features Awards and Reviewed


  • Texas Library Association Lone Star Reading List, Winner, 2003
  • VOYA Top Shelf Fiction for Middle School Readers, Winner, 2003



“Readers will feel the tension mounting as Ian begins to piece together the reality he can no longer ignore, and there are plenty of twists and turns to keep the pages turning.”


“When Fifteen-year-old Ian’s best friend, Teddy, mysteriously vanishes in the Redwood forest of California, Ian begins hearing strange voices and having memory lapses, causing him to frantically question his own role in Teddy’s disappearance. Danilyn (7th grade) thought this book was a good blend of ‘mystery and nature.’”

Author: Elaine Marie Alphin

Since her first novel for young readers appeared in 1991, Elaine Marie Alphin published 27 books for young people and one for adults (about writing for young people). Elaine wrote for readers of all ages, from Davy Crockett in Lerner's History Makers series for beginning readers up through teenage mysteries such as Counterfeit Son, winner of the Edgar Award for Best Young Adult mystery. Elaine loved research, and that love impacted all of her writing, from biographies for middle grade readers like I Have Not Yet Begun To Fight: A Story About John Paul Jones in the Creative Minds series through young adult fiction such as the history-inspired mystery, The Perfect Shot to the stand-alone nonfiction young adult book An Unspeakable Crime: The Prosecution and Persecution of Leo Frank.