“There’s a new boy at school called Louis. Louis sits next to me and I look out for him. He’s not quite like the rest of us. Sometimes I wonder what he’s thinking about. He often just sits and stares at the wall. If I ask him what he’s looking at, he says, ‘Looking at’ and keeps on looking.” Louis, who has autism, starts a new school and sits next to a girl called Emma. The story describes how Louis’ classmates come to better understand him and interact with him. At first, they are puzzled by his behaviour, and Emma (the girl who sits next to him) watches as the other boys in the class get cross with Louis for disrupting their football game by walking about in the middle of the pitch. Their teacher, Miss Owlie, on realising that Louis has painted a picture of a football game, spots a potential spark of interest and allows Louis to play football with his classmate Sam during lesson time. Emma can’t work out why he’s allowed to do this, until Miss Owlie has a chat to her. Emma suddenly realises that ‘special people are sometimes allowed to break the rules’.
Beautiful contemporary illustrations accompany this tale of friendship, empathy and understanding.