FICTION
Clara Voyant
224p. Puffin Canada. May 2018. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780143198536.
COPY ISBN
Gr 4–7—Clara craves normalcy and organization. With her beloved grandmother deserting their home in Toronto for sunny Florida, Clara is left to the whimsical parenting of her mother, Gabby. Gabby "follows her bliss" and moves them to an apartment in a new neighborhood, paints the apartment walls in colors like Mango and Ripe Tomato, and gets a job at an herb shop mixing potions and remedies. Clara is mortified. Clara's life only gets worse when she is assigned to write horoscopes for the middle school paper under the pen name Clara Voyant. What self-respecting investigative journalist would stoop to such "woo-woo" malarkey? Embarrassingly, the horoscope column is a resounding success, with stunningly accurate predictions. Now, Clara is besieged by students wanting to know their futures, and she is given a permanent position at the paper. Clara decides to take charge of her destiny and sets out to prove her journalistic chops by finding the missing school mascot. This lighthearted mystery focuses more on character development than suspense. Clara is so driven to compensate for her mother and create an orderly world that she overlooks the potential for fun and friendship. As the plot develops, she struggles to accept that she may actually be clairvoyant, but eventually opens her heart to a bit of eccentricity.
VERDICT Clara is an utterly likable character and readers will root for her. A solid purchase for larger collections, especially where readers enjoy a touch of the supernatural in their mysteries.

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