• A lesson that turns into a gift for a young daughter from her migrant father

    By Aracelli Astorga LatinaLista Papi's Gift, by Karen Stanton and illustrated by René King Moreno, tells the story of Graciela, a young girl who lives in a small, Latin American village with her mother and two brothers. Because it has not rained in a very long time, Graciela's father has reluctantly left...

  • Latina adventurer goes from NFL cheerleader to wildlife explorer

    By Pam Burrell LatinaLista   "As I crouched only a few feet from him, Kingo crouched in front of the camera, feeding on vegetation, seemingly undisturbed. I looked at him and then turned to Andy's lens and said, 'Clearly, the silverback is the dominant member of the group.' I was about to...

  • The story of one small town’s change to embrace its new Latino residents

    By Sarah Dahlen LatinaLista Picture a city in the United States with a thriving, vibrant Latino community. Is Allentown, Pennsylvania what comes to mind? If not, it may be time to read Edgar Sandoval's book, The New Face of Small-Town America: Snapshots of Latino Life in Allentown, Pennsylvania. As is clear from...

  • A Memorial Day parade holds a special surprise for one young boy

    By Elizabeth Lopez LatinaLista What can be more exciting than a surprise? How about a surprise that happens right in the middle of a celebration? In the delightful Memorial Day Surprise by Theresa Martin Golding and published by Boyds Mills Press, this is exactly what awaits a young boy named Marco during...

  • Globalization and the Paso del Norte Region

    By Sarah Dahlen LatinaLista Ciudad Juarez has become an unfortunate symbol of all that is wrong at the U.S./Mexico border: violence, poverty, exploitation, lawlessness. With an average homicide rate of 200 people per month in recent years, this reputation is not entirely undeserved. But Juarez and the rest of the Paso del...

  • The special connection between Monarch butterflies and El Dia de los Muertos

    By Martha Rico LatinaLista In the Latino culture, El Dia de los Muertos holds a special significance for families who have loved ones who have died. In Uncle Monarch and the Day of the Dead, by Judy Goldman and illustrated by Rene King Moreno, the story takes a new twist featuring a...

  • Young Latino soccer players kick away stereotypes on way to their goal

    By Pam Burrell LatinaLista Woodburn, Oregon's population is 51 percent Hispanic and 49 percent Anglo. It has the highest concentration of taquerias in the state and on Saturday afternoons the parks are crowded with Hispanic men's soccer league games which culminate every August with an intense men's league tournament called Fiesta Mexicana....

  • A mother’s gift helps a boy endure a long journey

    By Elizabeth Lopez LatinaLista My Shoes and I by René Colato Laínez, and published by Boyds Mills Press, is an inspiring story about a boy named Mario and the journey he makes with his father across three borders to the United States from El Salvador. Shortly before their trip, Mario receives a...

  • Mariposas: A poetry anthology from a queer Latino perspective

    By Sarah Dahlen LatinaLista Writing poetry is an intimate endeavor. Reading it can feel equally intimate when a poem is well written and resonates with its reader. Many poetry fans may never pick up Mariposas: A Modern Anthology of Queer Latino Poetry for fear that its themes would not resonate with them....

  • Creating a new life doesn’t mean changing your name

    By Lisa Lopez LatinaLista The book "My Name is Jorge: On Both Sides of the River" by Jane Medina is a vivid portrait of a young boy's personal experience in a new country. Through bilingual poetic prose, the author manages to capture the constant struggles a Mexican family endures while crossing over...

  • A young girl brings her dreams across the border

    By Lisa Lopez LatinaLista Jane Medina's "The Dream on Blanca's Wall" is an outstanding bilingual collection of poems from Blanca's point of view. Similarly to Medina's previous notable book "My Name is Jorge", this poetic collection presents the female perspective on the universal struggles to fit into a new society and country....

  • Unleashing the magic of a child’s imagination

    By Martha Rico LatinaLista Benjamin, Daniel and Alejandra love spending time with their abuelos at their farm on the weekends. They especially look forward to Grandpa's special breakfasts and working together outdoors doing chores. On one particular visit, Benjamin claims to see something on the burnt tortilla Grandpa Luis serves him. He...

  • A young athlete’s dream turns into Olympic Gold

    By Alma Ramos-McDermott LatinaLista How does a poor Mexican-American kid pull himself out of the slums to win a 2006 Beijing Olympic gold medal in freestyle wrestling? In bold, descriptive language, Henry Cejudo tells his story in the book "American Victory," published by Penguin Books. In the autobiography, Henry shares memories of...

  • Flamenco comes alive through vivid photos and simple storytelling

    By Lisa Lopez LatinaLista   The world of flamenco performance is beautifully depicted in this illustrative photo essay entitled ¡OLÉ! Flamenco by George Ancona and published by Lee & Low Books. Ancona manages to convey a true love of the ancient and international music and dance of flamenco. The book commences by...

  • Troubled lives teach teens lessons for life

    By Alma Ramos-McDermott LatinaLista What will Beto do now that he has walked away from the only home he's ever known? It's a question that will keep readers engaged as they follow Beto's journey in the young adult novel "A good long way" by René Saldaña Jr. and published by Arte Publico...

  • Julian Samora: The man who brought Latino Studies to campus curricula

    By Sarah Dahlen LatinaLista The Mexican-American experience is widely considered to be a worthwhile field of academic inquiry, to the extent that today's college student may not be aware of the struggles involved in arriving at such widespread recognition. This is why Moving Beyond Borders: Julian Samora and the Establishment of Latino...

  • A bilingual approach to hearing sounds

    By Aracelli Astorga LatinaLista In the Spanish-language book, Con mis oidos, by Mariana I. Pellegrino, with illustrations by Mariana Nemitz, children are introduced to the many wonderful things people can hear by using our ears -- school bells ringing, birds singing, ocean waves splashing. The book's text is made up of simple...

  • A child’s excuses create one “monster” after another

    By Martha Rico LatinaLista "But a monster might take me away forever!" is the line Roberto uses each time his mother asks him to do a specific chore in the bilingual tale titled No Time for Monsters/No Hay Tiempo para Monstruos by Spelile Rivas and illustrated by Valeria Cervantes. Roberto is a...

  • Competition warms a chilled friendship between two friends

    By Lisa Lopez LatinaLista On a scorching hot day, somewhere in a small town in Texas, extreme thirst and competitive snow cone sales lead readers to a colorful adventure in the bilingual tale of The Battle of the Snow Cones/La Guerra de las Raspas by Lupe Ruiz-Flores. Ten-year-old Elena is an imaginative...

  • A little girl’s wish to play by the light of the moon

    By Jo Ann Hernandez LatinaLista — Beautiful Moon/Bella Luna, written by Dawn Jeffers, is an evoking, beautifully illustrated bilingual children's picture book about a little girl who wants the day to last forever so that she may play and play. She loves the moon, when everything is cool and fresh, but it's only during...