Written by Richard Michelson
Illustrated by E. B. Lewis
I began reading this book to my kids and after a few pages I stopped. It is about two boys who live across the alley from one another. They were great friends, though they never played with one another aside from tossing a ball across the alley from their bedroom windows. Willie was black and played baseball. Abe was Jewish and played the violin.
I stopped reading the book because I didn’t like the stereotypes that were presented in the book, specifically by Abe’s grandfather. However, I silently read further in the book and decided to proceed in reading it to my kids. I was pleased to see that the stereotypes were broken and in fact, Willie turned out to be quite the violin player and Abe turned out to be a quite a baseball pitcher.