The Lunch Thief
In THE LUNCH THIEF, by Anne C. Bromley, Rafael is hungry because someone stole his lunch. His mom had packed his lunch bag with two burritos, a bag of corn chips, some carrots, and an apple. Once a week she tucks in a slice of her special lemon pound cake. Rafael saw Kevin, a new kid in his class, sneak his lunch bag from underneath his desk and tuck it in his backpack. But how can he do something about the theft without picking a fight?
In THE LUNCH THIEF, by Anne C. Bromley, Rafael is hungry because someone stole his lunch. His mom had packed his lunch bag with two burritos, a bag of corn chips, some carrots, and an apple. Once a week she tucks in a slice of her special lemon pound cake. Rafael saw Kevin, a new kid in his class, sneak his lunch bag from underneath his desk and tuck it in his backpack. But how can he do something about the theft without picking a fight? Inspired by his mother’s advice to use his mouth before his fists, Rafael bides his time, but other kids’ lunches are disappearing, too. On an errand with his mom, Rafael sees Kevin carrying a bundle of laundry into a motel room, and his mom tells him Kevin’s family might be one of the families who lost their homes in the recent wildfires. Rafael rethinks his anger. The next day, instead of accusing Kevin, Rafael invites him to share his lunch, letting him know he’s been caught, but offering friendship as well as a good meal.
“Rafael, a slightly pudgy boy whose favorite activities are pitching baseball and eating, catches Kevin, a new classmate, stealing lunches from him and his friends. Refraining from picking a fight (“Mama says fighting is for cowards”), Rafael is nonetheless annoyed by Kevin’s actions and decides to find out more about this furtive, troubled boy. He learns from Kevin that his family lost their house in a recent southern California wildfire and then catches a glimpse of him carrying his laundry to a cheap motel. Thinking the situation through (and considering that his baseball coach has suggested he lose some weight), Rafael decides to offer Kevin not only his extra daily burrito, but also the weekly slice of his mother’s famous lemon pound cake, thus defusing a potentially explosive situation. Full-color illustrations realistically portray the cast of characters and the boys’ multicultural school. With a few well-placed remarks by Rafael’s hardworking mother and no preachy overtones, this entirely credible story of how a thoughtful boy elects to “light one candle” in response to the larger problem of homelessness and hunger would make an excellent touchstone for class discussion.” -Kathleen Finn, St. Francis Xavier School, Winooski, VT, School Library Journal: Gr 2-4
Honors and Awards:
Skipping Stones Honor Award
Alabama Department of Education’s Camellia Award
San Diego Book Awards, Finalist
About the Author/Illustrator:
Anne C. Bromley lives in Encinitas, California, with her husband Rod. She is a business-writing instructor and consultant who teaches seminars throughout southern California. She has also taught creative-writing workshops for children and for adults. Anne has published two books of poetry with Carnegie Mellon Univbeach-tersity Press. She has both Master of Fine Arts and Master of Education degrees. Anne enjoys hiking in the high desert of Joshua Tree National Park, strolling along Swami’s Beach at sunset, and observing the wildlife of her own neighborhood feral cats, raccoons, opossums, an occasional coyote, and surfers. Inspired by her experiences as a substitute teacher in northern San Diego County, The Lunch Thief is her first children’s book.
Robert Casilla, born in Jersey City, New Jersey, to parents from Puerto Rico, received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. He works from his home studio in New Fairfield, Connecticut, where he lives with his wife and two children.
Robert has illustrated many multicultural children’s books such as The Little Painter of Sabana Grande.
|Dimensions||9 x 10.00 x 0.508 in|
Anne C. Bromley