I really liked Pictures From Our Vacation. I think Perkins does an excellent job of capturing small details and experiences from kids’ lives. In this story summer vacation doesn’t start out the way the kids hoped, and they wish they’d gone to Disney World instead. But the rainy days, endless car voyages, and lazy times at their grandparents’ farm actually turn into something great. Especially when they meet all their cousins, aunts, and uncles. I liked the way this story focused on quiet moments rather than big events, and I really liked the pictures the kids took of their trip.

I thought the style and focus on little things in a kid’s existence were much like Perkins’s storytelling in Criss Cross, her Newbery-winning novel from 2006.

This was a great story about teenagers in a small town and the little adventures they have one summer. The main character, Debbie, wishes that something would happen. And in the small, everyday events of her summer with Hector and her other friends, things do happen. In both of these books, Perkins remembers the details of what it feels like to be a child and a teenager, how small events can feel very big. These are both fantastic stories.