This book celebrates the amazing and underappreciated diversity of the Latino community and makes great strides toward ameliorating one-dimensional stereotypes. Through 12 narrative poems, the authors explore the experiences of fictional men and women; Christians and Jews; immigrants, indigenous people, and second-generation Americans; professionals and farmers; all of whom identify themselves as Latinos. Each poem is followed by brief factual explanation of the major themes within, such as the Spanish Civil War, Asian influences in Latin America, and Cuba’s relationship with the U.S.
Black-and-white abstract art by Caldecott winner Díaz elevates each individual’s story by illustrating major themes. While the authors include a bibliography of source material, they also acknowledge a lengthy list of people who provided inspiration for the topics discussed in the book. Perhaps it is the use of these real-life figures that gives the fictional vignettes such an air of realism and relatability for both Latino and non-Latino readers alike. Grades 3-6. –Erin Anderson
A poetic celebration of the diversity found among Latinos.
Each poem in this collection of 13 vignettes is a glimpse into the life of a Latino child living in the United States. Ada and Campoy do a commendable job of creating a nuanced, realistic reflection of the many-faceted Latino experience, including characters from a variety of ethnic, religious, language and racial backgrounds. […] An informational piece follows each poem that […] expands on the social and historical context with honesty and depth. […] Díaz’s signature black-and-white cut-paper art decorates the collection and is especially noteworthy in its reflection of the themes in the informational pieces.[…] a collection both interesting and educational, offering Latino children positive representations of themselves and teaching non-Latino children about the richness and breadth of the Latino experience.