Our Next Good Read. . .Estrella’s Quinceañera

Estrella's Quinceanera 1Join us February 4th at bookworks from 5:00-7:00 pm to discuss our next book.  We are reading Estrella’s Quinceañera by Malín Alegría.

Meet Estrella: “For as long as Estrella Alvarez can remember, her mother has been planning to throw her an elaborate quinceañera for her fifteenth birthday — complete with a mariachi band, cheesy decorations, and a hideous dress. Just thinking about her quince makes Estrella cringe. But her mother insists that it’s tradition.

Estrella has other things on her mind, anyway — like dating Speedy. Does it matter that her new friends — and her parents — would never approve of a guy from el barrio? Estrella’s almost fifteen and wants to start making her own decisions. But is she ready to find out who she is — and who she really wants to be?”

We’re really excited to be reading this one–one of our book group members recommended it after she heard about it on NPR!  Be sure to get entered in our drawing for one of five free copies of the book!! All you have to do is comment on any blog post before January 17th!

We hope to see you on February 4th–which just happens to be my birthday, a pretty appropriate book, don’t you think? Even if I am just a tad older than 15. . .

Our Next Good Read. . .Hurricane Dancers: The First Caribbean Pirate Shipwreck

Hurricane Dancers

Join us January 14th at bookworks from 5:00-7:00 pm to discuss our next book.  We are reading Hurricane Dancers: The First Caribbean Pirate Shipwreck by Margarita Engle

Recognized with multiple awards and honors, Hurricane Dancers is another excellent novel in verse from Margarita Engle.

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Book Review: The Red Umbrella

As many of you probably already know, The Red Umbrella is the featured novel for our

"The Red Umbrella," written by Christina Diaz Gonzalez.December book group meeting.  Read more on my thoughts about the book below. Be sure to share your own in the comments section–we’d love to hear what you have to say! For our Albuquerque locals, don’t forget we are meeting this Monday, December 3rd, from 5:00-7:00 at bookworks for our monthly discussion.  Hope to see you there!

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Our Next Good Read. . .The Red Umbrella

Join us December 3rd at Bookworks from 5:00-7:00 pm to discuss our next book.  We are reading The Red Umbrella by Christina Diaz Gonzalez.

Here’s a sneak peek about the book-“The Red Umbrella is the moving tale of a 14-year-old girl’s journey from Cuba to America as part of Operation Pedro Pan—an organized exodus of more than 14,000 unaccompanied children, whose parents sent them away to escape Fidel Castro’s revolution. Continue reading

Book Giveaway!! The Red Umbrella

It’s time for another giveaway! This month we’re giving away 5 copies of The Red Umbrella (written by Christina Diaz Gonzalez)–our featured novel for December’s book group meeting!! It’s a beautifully written book that tells the story of one girl’s journey to the United States as part of Operation Pedro Pan–the organized transplanting of 14,000 children from Cuba to the United States in the early years following the revolution.  To be entered in the giveaway, just comment on any post on the blog by NOVEMBER 14TH. Everyone who comments between October 10th and November 14th will be entered in the drawing.  It’s a great way to add to your personal teaching library! If your name is chosen, we’ll email you ASAP about mailing the book to you.

Good luck!

Update: We’ve extended our giveaway until November 14th! You have a few more days to comment and be entered into the drawing!!

Our Next Good Read. . .The Circuit

Join us November 5th at Bookworks from 5:00-7:00 pm to discuss our next book.  We are reading The Circuit by Francisco Jiménez.

It’s quite an amazing story–“‘La frontera’…I heard it for the first time back in the late 1940s when Papa and Mama told me and Roberto, my older brother, that someday we would take a long trip north, cross la frontera, enter California, and leave our poverty behind.” So begins this honest and powerful account of a family’s journey to the fields of California — to a life of constant moving, from strawberry fields to cotton fields, from tent cities to one-room shacks, from picking grapes to topping carrots and thinning lettuce. Seen through the eyes of a boy who longs for an education and the right to call one place home, this is a story of survival, faith, and hope. It is a journey that will open readers’ hearts and minds. (Taken from http://www.amazon.com/The-Circuit-Francisco-Jimenez/dp/0395979021/ref=tmm_hrd_title_0).

We hope to see you there! We’re looking forward to hearing what you think about the book!

Thanks so much to the wonderful group who joined us last night for our October discussion of The Dreamer.  If you couldn’t make it to the book group, be sure to let us know what you thought about the book by commenting on a post.  We want to hear your thoughts too!

Book Review: The Dreamer

I’ll be honest, before I read Pamela Muñoz Ryan’s The Dreamer, I knew very little about Pablo Neruda.  My knowledge of Neruda could be summed up in one simple statement: he was a famous poet from Chile.  But all that changed with Muñoz Ryan’s account of Neruda’s childhood.  The Dreamer isn’t strictly fiction or biography.  Instead, as it’s The Dreamer, Chile, Pam Munoz Ryandescribed on the inside cover, it weaves together “magical realism with biography, poetry, literary fiction, and sensorial, transporting illustrations, Pam Muñoz Ryan and Peter Sís take readers on a rare journey of the heart and imagination.” In the novel, Neruda, the famous Nobel Laureate literary figure, is dramatically transformed into the imaginative, reflective, shy, and loving child of Neftalí Reyes who would one day become the famous poet.

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Our Next Good Read. . .The Dreamer

Join us October 1st at Bookworks from 5:00-7:00 pm to discuss our next book.  We are reading The Dreamer by Pam Muñoz Ryan and Peter Sís. It has received numerous awards including the Américas Award and the Pura Bulpré Medal.

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Book Review: The Queen of Water

The Queen of Water had me hooked from the very beginning.  It’s the story of Virginia, a young indígena born into an impoverished family in Ecuador. At the age of six, Virginia is sent away to work for a wealthier mestizo family.  Both the reader and Virginia come to realize that this is the beginning of Virginia’s life as a domestic slave.  While domestic slavery (especially of a young child) is difficult enough to stomach, what makes it all the more troubling is that it is a true story set in the 1980s. In fact, it is co-written by the ‘real’ Virginia—María Virginia Farinango. "The Queen of Water," by Laura Resau Continue reading

Our Next Good Read. . .The Queen of Water

Join us September 10th at Bookworks from 5:00-7:00 to discuss our next book.  We are reading The Queen of Water by Laura Resau and María Virginia Farinango.   It has received numerous awards and was recently named the Américas Award honorable mention for 2012.

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