BOSS OF LUNCH by Barbara Park

BOSS OF LUNCH

From the "Junie B., First Grader" series
by , illustrated by
Age Range: 7 - 10

KIRKUS REVIEW

Junie is adjusting to the new world of first grade, where she is learning to follow rules and settle down—at least a little bit. She has a new lunchbox and she just cannot keep her hands off of it. Mr. Scary, her teacher, has exhorted her to leave it alone until lunchtime, even if she is extolling the virtues of a homemade lunch. “ ’Cause brought lunches are made special by our very own mothers!” May, the prissy, perfect girl who loves to annoy Junie is more than happy to tattle on her or to point out the virtues of the cafeteria lunch. “All school lunches have to be delicious and nutritious. It’s a rule.” Junie is left with her sandwich while the children all choose a cafeteria hoagie. Well, rules are made to be broken and no one can break them quite like Junie B. She ends up as a lunch helper, fancying herself as being in charge of the kitchen, despite her mother’s gentle admonition: “A helper is not the boss.” Though she loves her job as the napkin arranger and sink sponger, she is cut down to size when she is asked to greet the older kids. Park’s particular gift is her ability to have Junie, the narrator, add interesting vocabulary and phrases to her speech. She really seems older than the Junie in the kindergarten books, more real, and more sympathetic. Who couldn’t relate to the little girl who wants to help but somehow manages to call the lunch “Tuna Noodle Stinkle” and compounds the mistake by screeching it at the top of her lungs? Hooray for Junie and hooray for the grown-ups in her life who accept her, loud mouth and all. (Fiction. 7-10)

Pub Date: May 28th, 2002
ISBN: 0-375-81517-1
Page count: 80pp
Publisher: Random House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2002




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