Not Perfect by Elizabeth LaBan Summary Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Not Perfect

Plot Summary Part 1

The book starts off with Tabitha. Tabitha is married to Stuart but Stuart disappeared a few months ago. We are not told for a long time why Stuart left Tabitha, even though Tabitha, from page one, knows perfectly well why Stuart left since Stuart told her. But to keep the suspense in this plotless book we are not told what Tabitha knows for a long time.

Most of the story revolves around the fact that Tabitha doesn't have enough money for food for herself or her two brat children, Fern and Levi. So we get hundreds of pages of "we ate a loaf of bread for dinner last night" and "Tonight I stole a chicken nugget from the buffet to feed my children" and so on.

Tabitha volunteers to visit an old woman named Nora in her home. Nora asks her to play Monopoly with her and Tabitha notices that Nora is using real money for the game. Even though she needs money Tabitha does not play.

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Tabitha thinks back to Stuart, her husband, how he never had much interest in putting his cock into her. That should have been a warning sign, but Tabitha was too dumb to notice.

Levi has a note from his dad Stuart. Stuart gave him $50 and told him to go work in a soup kitchen. That's a recurring theme in this book--how great it is working soup kitchens like a slave.

Tabitha goes to University of Michigan alumni parties and steals food. She meets a guy named Toby there who does not yet stick his p_nis in her v_gina. They have a very exciting conversation together about nothing. Then Tabitha steals food and brings it home.

Tabitha goes to a hotel and steals some toilet paper. I guess she's tired of using her right hand, heh heh heh heh.

Tabitha goes to a soup kitchen and steals some peppers. Who eats peppers whole? Then she steals a bottle of cinnamon sugar. Tabitha seems to seek out the worst kinds of food to steal.

Tabitha's friend Rachel tells Tabitha that she wants to go to a sperm bank and make a withdrawal. She asks Rachel to help raise her baby because obviously she sees no need for a Daddy in her baby's life. That's Rachel's entire story; that's all you need to know about her.
Tabitha, who doesn't have enough money for toilet paper, agrees to help raise Rachel's child.

Tabitha meets Toby again, and again he does not yet stick his p_nis in her v_gina. Instead he takes her to a bakery where he knows they are throwing out extra food and they give it to homeless people. This is what substitutes for plot and character development in this book--all the characters go to feed homeless people to feel virtuous.

Nothing ever happens when they feed the homeless people, it would have been more interesting if one of the characters got stabbed or mugged.

At the end of the evening Toby advises her to keep some food for himself, making it obvious that he knows that Tabitha steals food and that she is so poor that she eats crazy things like peppers.

Meanwhile Levi, the foolish boy, used his Dad's $50 to take a taxi to the soup kitchen (to feed the homeless) and is out of money. How dumb is that?

Tabitha steals basil growing on someone's window box. She rarely steals real food, only condiments which are basically inedible.

Tabitha tells the guy at the supermarket that she is poor and starving, and he gives her some cheese as if she is a mouse. We are supposed to be moved by this touching kindness, and connect this with everyone's effort to feed the homeless.

Tabitha's daughter Fern has hurt her knee. How, we never know, even after 300 pages, but they talk about her hurt knee for 300 pages.

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