Elementary school detectives put their (neurodiverse) heads together to investigate the case of a stolen robot.
When his doorbell rings on a Friday morning, Myron knows something is afoot; his autism makes him sensitive to changes in his routine. He's right; Jordan, a classmate from his special needs classroom, is calling on him and his friend Hajrah—aka the West Meadows Detectives—to find out who stole his robot for the upcoming Maker Faire. Logical, white Myron and hyperenergetic, Middle Eastern Hajrah brave the bullying Smasher McGinty and follow clues to find a plausible, lightly foreshadowed culprit. Myron and Hajrah's friendship is delightfully fleshed out through their bickering and understanding of each other's respective quirks—and quirks they are, free of medicalization. Myron's autism is quickly explained but is just as quickly understood as intrinsic to his personality, buzzing brain and all. While his literal thinking is sometimes unintentionally humorous, it doesn't preclude his own sense of humor—in fact, his awareness of it allows him to laugh at himself, and others laugh with him rather than at him. Nor does his logic preclude empathy; in fact, it aids in deducing others' emotions. Grand's friendly illustrations also offer glimpses of Myron's personality, from his detective posters to the pencil mug that reads, "The truth is out there." Jordan is depicted with East Asian features; Smasher is a white girl.
Readers will enjoy following Myron's developing, appealing voice as much as they do following clues. (Mystery. 7-9)