cover image The Boo-Boos of Bluebell Elementary

The Boo-Boos of Bluebell Elementary

Chelsea Lin Wallace, illus. by Alison Farrell. Chronicle, $17.99 (60p) ISBN 978-1-7972-1081-0

Dressed in clogs and bright yellow scrubs, brown-skinned Miss Peatree clicks her heels as she readies for her day as the nurse of Bluebell Elementary. She also remains a grounded, reassuring presence as the walking wounded (including the school principal) arrive, each crying “Miss P! Miss P!” Seriocomic couplets by Wallace (A Home Named Walter) and stylized, ever-vivid watercolor-and-ink vignettes by Farrell (A Cub Story) present familiar, non-emergent issues and their backstories in distinctive typography (a sneeze is detailed in gooey, green effluence). Charlee’s loose but stubborn tooth becomes the book’s running joke, while Gus’s homesickness reminds readers that nurses also dispense emotional first aid (“It feels like I might fall apart/ I need a Band-Aid for my heart”). Readers can track the visitors via a yellow log on the left side of each spread (the “status” column includes “mortified” and “indignant”). It’s a funny, occasionally yucky, and much-needed celebration of an unsung member of school community, who gets some well-earned, canine comfort herself at the end of a busy day: “After all, we all need tending./ Even those who do the mending.” Ages 5–8. Author’s agent: Jennifer Rofé, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. Illustrator’s agent: Elena Giovinazzo, Pippin Properties. (Nov.)