cover image Caps for Sale and the Mindful Monkeys

Caps for Sale and the Mindful Monkeys

Esphyr Slobodkina and Ann Marie Mulhearn Sayer. Harper, $17.99 (48p) ISBN 978-0-06-249988-2

As she did in 2015’s More Caps for Sale, Sayer continues to build out the story of Pezzo the peddler and the monkeys that both frustrate and help him. This quietly funny if somewhat drawn out tale, based on Slobodkina’s notes and employing her artwork, finds the peddler seeking advice from his friend Essie (herself a tribute to Slobodkina) on how to handle the monkeys. “Sometimes what we don’t want is exactly what we need,” Essie tells the peddler. And she’s right: when Pezzo is called away to visit a sick friend, the monkeys, who have been attentively watching him make caps, step in to create more wares for him to sell the next day. A closing spread fills in valuable context about some of the tertiary characters that appear in the story, which can be traced to other books from Slobodkina’s bibliography. Ages 4–8. Agent: Kirsten Hall, Catbird Agency. (Aug.)