National Hispanic-Latino Heritage Month (9-15 to 10-15) Kid Lit Review of “Abuela” by Arthur Dorros

In this lovely classic, the little girl Rosalba imagines taking a flight with her grandmother (abuela) over the city of Manhattan. Each site they see inspires a memory from Abuela, and so conveys something about the grandmother’s culture. Since Abuela speaks mostly Spanish, the little girl translates. While overhead, they see colorful scenes loaded with people, dogs, food, stores, famous buildings, cars, apartment houses, and activities. The pictures, mixed-media collages done with a folkloric look and stressing the multicultural nature of the city, are vibrant and packed with things to identify.

I also checked an all-Spanish edition of this book, and had no trouble discerning what was going on just from Elisa Kleven’s illustrations. I can see children spending hours of delight searching through all the details in the pictures. Both the Spanish and English editions include words and phrases in the other language along with definitions, woven seamlessly into the very cute story.

Rating: 4.5/5

Published by Dutton Children’s Books, 1991

Product Details
Reading level: Ages 3 and up
Paperback: 40 pages
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0140562257
ISBN-13: 978-0140562255

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8 Responses to National Hispanic-Latino Heritage Month (9-15 to 10-15) Kid Lit Review of “Abuela” by Arthur Dorros

  1. What a gorgeous book!

  2. Love this colorful book. The illustrations really pull you in and make you want to read this one!

  3. jama says:

    Love love Elisa Kleven’s art! This book’s been around a long time and I’ve never gotten around to reading it. Must see it soon :).

  4. Rachel says:

    I love the illustrations – great colors!

  5. bookingmama says:

    This book is gorgeous! My kids and I loved books like this because there were so many things to look at — something new each time we would read it.

  6. Jenners says:

    I love the vibrant colors!

  7. Ti says:

    Love the art work.

  8. stacybuckeye says:

    Beautiful colors. It looks a little too busy for Gage right now but I’d like to look at the details 🙂

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