National Hispanic Heritage Month Roundup

Let's celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month! From September 15 to October 15, the Library of Congress officially recognizes the "histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America." Here's a roundup of children's and YA book reviews, author interviews, and more to help get the fiesta started at your house.

Picture books

Jeff reviews The Cazuela that the Farm Maiden Stirred by Samantha Vamos (illustrated by Rafael Lopez; Charlesbridge, 2011) at NC Teacher Stuff (thanks, Jeff!).  Note: The Books Together Test Kitchen is making arroz con leche using the farm maiden's recipe. Review coming soon!

Author Monica Brown shares "the story behind the story" of Waiting for the Biblioburro (illustrated by John Parra; Tricycle Press, 2011) at Paper Tigers.

Tasha reviews Tia Isa Wants a Car by Meg Medina (illustrated by Claudio Munoz; Candlewick, 2011) at Waking Brain Cells.

Roberta reviews Ellen Ochoa: The First Hispanic Woman Astronaut (PowerKids Press, 2001) at Wrapped in Foil.  In honor of World Space Week and National Hispanic Heritage Month!

Chapter books and middle grade novels

Alma Flor Ada and her son and co-author Gabriel Zubizarreta (Dancing Home; Atheneum, 2011) talk about immigration and collaboration in an interview at Kirkus Reviews. See Alma's website for more reviews of Dancing Home, which is also available in a Spanish edition (Nacer bailando). The gorgeous cover art is by Edel Rodriguez.

Charlotte reviews The Cheshire Cheese Cat by Cuban-American author Carmen Agra Deedy (and Randall Wright; illustrated by Barry Moser; Peachtree, 2011) at Charlotte's Library.

And her favorite Hispanic-themed children's book of the year, Tortilla Sun by Jennifer Cervantes (Chronicle, 2010).

Young Adult

Charlotte also reviewed The Queen of Water by Laura Resau and Maria Virginia Farinango (Delacorte, 2011) at Charlotte's Library. See Laura's website for the story behind this important book, and her blog for the inside scoop on its gorgeous cover. [Extra thanks to Charlotte for helping me to populate this list!]

Deviant (Adrian McKinty, Abrams, 2011), a YA novel with a Latino main character, reviewed at Finding Wonderland (thanks, Sarah and Tanita!).


For your consideration

The Heartland Chapter of REFORMA has posted a list of titles under consideration for their 2011 Mock Pura Belpre Award Session. This list is a great place to look for children's books by Latin American authors and illustrators, very much in the spirit of National Hispanic Heritage Month.

Please leave a comment if you would like to contribute a post to the National Hispanic Heritage Month roundup, and I'll add it to the list. ¡Muchísimas gracias a todos!