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Picture Perfect
by Elaine Marie Alphin

Ian Slater’s best friend has vanished. Ian and Teddy were supposed to spend the afternoon photographing the redwoods, but Teddy never showed up. People might go missing in a big city like San Francisco, but not a little town like Sawville. Has Teddy gone in search of the father he’s never met? Or has something terrible happened to him? What is the truth behind the picture perfect image?
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Ian doesn’t know. But he’s suddenly hearing strange voices, and he keeps seeing Teddy in his dreams. Even more disturbing – he can’t quite remember everything he did on the day Teddy vanished. Now people are telling him he’s acting strangely, and the sheriff is questioning him. Ian is determined to prove – to the sheriff and to his teachers and classmates, as well as to himself -that he has nothing to hide. But the more he searches for clues to Teddy’s disappearance, the more he wonders: How well did he ever know Teddy? How well does he even know himself?

Growing up in California, I always admired the majestic redwoods. When I had the opportunity to return there for a speaking engagement, I explored them again with a friend, and thought how deceptive, and threatening, the shadowy, towering redwoods could become – and how difficult it was to capture the truth about them in a photograph. I thought how easy it would be to disappear into the mist, and how easy it was for truth to disappear into an image, and Ian and Teddy were born. [/spoiler]

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800 Middle School 244 Drama 2003 0822505355

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