Leitich Smith, Greg. Tofu and T. rex. New York: Little, Brown and Co., 2005. Print
image from : http://vegbooks.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/Tofu.jpg
Here is another book that's been on my shelf too many years. I received this as an Advanced Reading Copy (ARC) (at the Texas Book Festival?). Again, I thought THIS is the summer I will read this book!
When I started to read it, I noticed the author's name. I recognized this name. So I "Googled" it and sure enough, this author is married to Cynthia Leitich Smith, an author I sought out to hear this year at TLA. This became another confirmation that this is the summer to read it. Now, on to the story.
The book is written for "middle grades, ages 8-12" (back cover). It was a funny read that I'm happy to share with my daughter. The story is told from two points of view: cousins Frederika (Freddie) Murchison-Kowalski and Hans-Peter Yamaha. The setting is Chicago. Freddie is a vegan. The kids' grandfather owns a butcher shop where both cousins work. There is conflict.
Freddie attends the Peshtigo School where Hans-Peter is trying to enroll. The application process is quirky, much like the school. Hans-Peter is dinosaur obsessed and the Peshtigo School offers a wonderful program that he wants to study. Will his admittance essays on sausage making be enough to convince the board he is Peshtigo worthy?
Through the story, the cousins come to understand that being different doesn't mean they can't be good cousins. They each end up helping the other in surprising ways.