The irrepressible Junie B.--room 9's most boisterous first grader nonpareil--has returned for another adventure, this time around as a hair-netted, plastic-mitted "helper" in the school cafeteria. (Her dad wisely guesses where this one's going: "A helper doesn't make things more difficult, Junie B. A helper makes things easier. Okay?") The 19th installment in this spunky series begins with much ado over the cultural implications of bought and brought lunches and the exciting arrival of a shiny new lunch box. ("Come, Herb! Come, Lennie and José! It's time for you to watch me eat out of my new lunch box!") But events quickly eclipse such trifles, as Junie B. runs into good ol' Mrs. Gutzman again, her "snack lady" from way back in kindergarten. ("That woman was a gem, I tell you.")
You might start feeling like Junie B.'s getting a little too irrepressible in her old age. But then again, maybe you've just had a long day (like Junie B.'s dad, presumably). Whatever the case, Barbara Park still rules the school with her likeable beginning chapter-book series, and you can bet Junie B. will be back for more, even after her lunch box loses its luster. (Ages 4 to 8) --Paul Hughes
Something very wonderful is happening to Junie B. Jones. And it’s called—hurray, hurray!—she’s getting to be a professional lunch lady! And that means hanging out with Mrs. Gutzman in the cafeteria. And standing behind the counter. And even wearing a real actual hair net! Who knows? Pretty soon she could be the boss of the whole entire lunch operation!
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