cover image Me and the Boss: A Story About Mending and Love

Me and the Boss: A Story About Mending and Love

Michelle Edwards, illus. by April Harrison. Random House/Schwartz, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-593-31067-0

“I know big sisters,” Lee says. “Zora, the boss, she’s mine. I go wherever she goes, and we are always home before dark. Those are the rules.” At their local library, the siblings, portrayed as Black, learn embroidery; Zora sews a flower that earns compliments from their parents, whereas Lee makes a “mess” and discovers a hole in his pocket. When Lee wakes in the middle of the night, the quiet and lack of oversight grant him the space to practice what he’s learned: he embroiders a smiling moon, mends the hole in his pocket, and reattaches a missing ear to Zora’s stuffed bear. The final act results in a big hug and thanks from Zora... before she orders him to get ready for another outing. “I fixed her bear, and she’s back to being the boss,” Lee’s wry first-person narration reads. In collage, acrylic, and pen and pencil art, Harrison (Nana Akua Goes to School) focuses on settings that range from the public and communal to the private and personal. Edwards (A Hat for Mrs. Goldman) highlights the funny, loving sibling dynamic—as well as the triumph of learning and applying a brand-new skill. Craft instructions conclude. Ages 4–8. Author’s agent: Lori Kilkelly, LK Literary. Illustrator’s agent: Regina Brooks, Serendipity Literary. (Oct.)