Floricanto Infantil y Juvenil
Bring Me More Stories: Tales of the Sephardim. Sally Benforado. ISBN 0915745674. $22.95.
In these short tales, author Benforado weaves together the oral history of a family of Sephardic Jews, from their close knit home in Turkey to their new lives in America. They are stories of a heritage that spans the globe, of centuries-old traditions transported to a different world, and of people who held tightly to the ways of their ancestors, who, like them, left their homes to settle in a strange new land. Following their exodus from Spain in 1492, Sephardic Jews were not allowed to remain on Spanish territories in North America, such as New Mexico and Colorado. Any Sephardim who chose not to leave, had to convert to Catholicism. Many chose to emigrate and leave Spain, their ancestral land forever. The hardships faced upon leaving Spain were horrific for the Spanish Jews. Paris vividly describes the following: Although some Jews "traveled by donkey," the Jews of Spain, for the most part, literally walked out of their country. These refugees were the "scholars, the sons and daughters of families who had served their monarchs . . . shoemakers, tanners, butchers, the old, the pregnant, [and] the young."
The Cult of Jaguar. Bonnie Hayman. ISBN 0915745585. $25.95.
Centuries ago, in the darkest jungles of Mexico, a young Mayan boy named Xichantl witnessed his father and most of his tribe follow the hallowed jaguar into the Graylands, never to be seen again. Now, a divorced mother and her two daughters from the United States go to Mexico for a summer vacation and stumble upon an ancient box that transforms their lives and could change the world. Set in the sultry and mysterious jungles of Mexico, with a backdrop of Mayan calendar, pyramids, Maya prophecies(calendario Maya, pirámides y profecías), the story revolves around several interesting characters who are after the same thing-each for a different reason. What happened to the ancient native civilizations of Mexico and Central America, which disappeared without a trace? The Mayan and Aztec cultures left important archaeological sites in Middle America before their civilizations vanished from this earth. While various theories attempt to explain these phenomena, nothing definitive has been proven, yet. Hayman's The Cult of the Jaguar, deals with this fascinating mystery and offers an intriguing and plausible answer to the question, "What really happened to the Aztecs and the Mayans, and the Cult of the Jaguar?"
Dreams. Sueños. By María del Pilar Muñoz. ISBN 978-1-888205-24-4. $22.95.
Interpretation of dreams has been practiced by mankind for thousands of years. The hermeneutics of dreams varies from culture to culture. Latino culture has always been fascinated with the mystery of dreams and has its own approach to their significance. We can learn a lot from our dreams about ourselves, our past, present and future, our fears and hopes, our community, our health, mental state, feelings and much more. Dreams is a book that will help you understand your dreams, look at the interpretations and meanings of dream symbols, learn special methods of self-dream psychoanalysis, reveal the subtle inferences and meaning of common dreams, such as falling teeth, flying, falling, chase, and more. You will also find here interpretation of special dream themes like scenes, sounds, feelings and colors, numbers, animals, food, houses, ocean, forest and etc . . . look for items and symbols that are prevalent in your dreams.
Esperanza: A Latina story. Sandra C. López. ISBN: 978-0-9796457-8-5. $24.95.
Fourteen-year old Esperanza Ignacio could only think of a few words to sum up her life: crap, man, crap! She was born into a poor Latino family living in a small crummy apartment in the barrio side of town, where the graffiti chiseled more the souls and character of the residents than it impacted the exterior looks of the buildings or anything else. Her father was a drunkard, gambler, and wife-beater who, one cold night, got arrested after a violent intrusion. Her entire circle of relatives consisted of nothing but formers—former drug-addicts, former gangsters and gang-bangers, former alcoholics, former everything. Yep, her life was nothing but a huge load of crap. And she hadn’t even started high school yet. After surviving a scorching summer heat, Esperanza enters the unfamiliar world of high-school with a tight knot in her stomach. On the very first day, she is sucked into a blunder of catastrophic events beginning with accidentally running into the world’s BIGGEST bully. And it definitely wasn’t an understatement either. Now, she has made herself the prime target for a main course. And, to top it all off, she has to see this girl everyday in P.E.! P.E.—the one class Esperanza truly despises the most. Could life be any worse for her?
Hasta la Vista, Baby! Donna Del Oro. ISBN 978-1-888205-17-6. $22.95.
"I thought it was great. I mean, I was hooked from the very first page because of all the wit and humor. I found myself laughing a few times . . . . and that was only the first three chapters!" ---Sandra Lopez, author of ESPERANZA and BEYOND THE GARDENS
"A fun romp to read! Hasta La Vista, Baby is a deft mix of humor and raw emotion with unforgettable characters. Donna Del Oro is an author to watch!" -- Loucinda McGary, award-winning author of The Wild Sight and The Treasures of Venice.
HASTA LA VISTA, BABY is a romantic comedy set in Silicon Valley. Sonya, the artist, is blind to everything but beauty. She learns the hard way that it’s never too late to wake up, wise up and grow up! Muralist Sonya Reyes Barton experiences an emotional meltdown when her handsome, cheating husband, Earl, announces at a family BBQ that he needs a divorce so he can marry his pregnant girlfriend. In front of all the Bartons, Sonya has a nervous breakdown, chases Earl with a barbecue fork, eventually winds down and collapses. How does the worst day of Sonya’s life eventually become the best thing that ever happens to her? How does she gain insight into herself and her choice of men? More importantly, how does Sonya learn to forgive herself and move on? There’s still life after forty-two and she’s determined to find it.
Island of Dreams. Jasminne Méndez. ISBN 978-1493580880. $13.95.
“My family has been forced to live like an island with no political party, president, or official language. We are not of any “new world” Columbus discovered. We are not Dominican enough or American enough to call either place home. We live and love with one foot on the ground and one foot in the sea.”
This is how Jasminne Méndez describes what it was like for her to grow up a Dominican American military brat. Always feeling like a foreigner in both lands because people want to know “where you from,” and “how do you know Spanish?” In "Island of Dreams," author Jasminne Méndez, addresses these questions and their complicated answers in a multi-genre memoir that effortlessly blends poems and short stories to offer a glimpse into the challenges, joys, hopes, fears and disappointments she and her family faced being Dominican in America. Her work explores everything from the love/hate relationship she had with her hair and her mother, to the many memorable but sometimes unpleasant family vacations and holidays she shared with her parents, siblings, primos, tíos, y tías. These captivating stories and poems are about family, food, love, culture, self-discovery, assimilation, and the American dream. They are about a young girl who respects the richness and abundance of her cultural history, but who struggles to form her own identity because her Dominican values conflict with her American self and all she wants to do is find a place to call home.
La Picardía Chicana: Latino Folk Humor. Folklore Latino Jocoso. José R. Reyna. Edited by Andrea Alessandra Cabello, M. D., with the Assistance of Gloria Canales. ISBN: 0-915745-42-9. $23.95.
Mexican American, Chicano folk literature has been of interest to folklorists and been collected incidentally, mostly as part of compilations of the longer and more prestigious standard folktale. José Reyna began his collection of jokes 1969, and some of the jokes compiled then, appeared in Stanley L. Robe’s Antología del Saber Popular . Picardía Chicana, the result of thirty years of work, contains five hundred twenty-six jokes which are reproduced here verbatim from tape recordings collected in the field. Some jokes were collected by the author as field research projects at Texas A & M University-Kingsville [1972-77] and at the University of New Mexico [1977-1984]. Others are synopses of jokes that Dr. Reyna learned over the years and took the liberty of translating to English for presentation here. Other terms used for this subject are Latino folklore. Latino jokes. Latino folk humor. Folklore Latino. Folclor latino. Mexican American Folk humor.
This book represents the best of Mexican American joke tradition. The title Picardía Chicana was selected in keeping with a well-known sixteenth-century Hispanic tradition of El Lazarillo de Tormes published originally in 1554, which spawned a new literary genre—la novela picaresca. Both the pícaro and the novela picaresca would surface in the New World—in Mexico—in the early nineteenth century (José Joaquín Fernández de Lizardi, El Periquillo Sarniento).
La vendedora de nubes. Clouds for Sale. Poniatowska, Elena. ISBN: 978-1499244564 $14.95
A little girl had a dream that became a reality: a beautiful cloud that followed her everywhere. One morning she decided she had to sell her pet cloud, because her family was very poor. She led the cloud to the farmers’ market and started calling out “Cloud for Sale!” A lot of customers came by, but they all wanted to use the cloud for their own purposes. Choosing a new owner for the cloud was not an easy task. Who do you think took off with the cloud?
Maravilla. Fuego, Laura del. ISBN: 0915745151. $22.95.
La Mujer Latina Series. "I named you Consuelo," my mother said, "because you didn't stop screaming for hours when you were born. I figured you needed hope." To Consuelo Concepción, "Cece" Contreres, however, hope seems to be just about all she's got. So when her boyfriend is cheating on her, her friends are doing drugs, and her parents don't understand her, is it any wonder that the only person she can talk to is St. Teresa de Avila? From the housing projects of East Los Angeles, Maravilla, to the lively scene of San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district in the 1960s, Laura del Fuego's novel tells the absorbing and personal tale of a young Chicana, like many in real life, making her way in turbulent times. It is a thoughtful and sometimes violent story about coming of age in the heart of the barrio, discovering one's self in the midst of chaos and trying to make sense of a troubled life.
A Most Memorable Quinceañera. Una Quinceañera Muy Memorable. Concepción, Leslie. ISBN: 978-1494253776 $14.95
This is a publication of Floricanto Press. “Saying goodbye to childhood is never easy.” The magical day, when a girl can play out her own fairytale fantasy and be a princess for a day, is her Quinceañera, and for Mimi that day has finally arrived. But instead of the excitement and jubilation she is expected to feel, all she can summon is uneasy dread and anxiety about what this day means. Her parents have been planning this event her whole life and Mimi is filled with the weight of their expectations, to act like a proper lady and know what to do. She doesn't know what to do and can’t comprehend how an archaic ceremony can change the way people see her, and how she could be a woman just because the calendar marks her a day older. Mimi doesn’t want people to treat her differently and no amount of rehearsing can mask the insecurities she feels. To make matters worse her cousin, Lala, picks the day of Mimi's Quinceañera to reveal she is pregnant, and it's only been a year after her very own Quinceañera. Mimi is distraught and believes that is what happens when parents, family, and society, rush a girl into womanhood. This is all the more reason for Mimi not to accept the tradition of publically becoming a woman.
Noldo and his Magical Scooter at the Battle of The Alamo=Noldo y su patinete mágico en la Batalla de El Álamo. Armando Rendón. ISBN 978-1490428659. $14.95.
Noldo is a Mexican-American boy, who, after building his own scooter from scraps, is magically transported from 1950’s San Antonio, Texas, into the middle of of the Battle of the Alamo, where he befriends a lad who lived more than a hundred years earlier. He lives through hard times, making do with very little. The story forges a link for Chicanos to their historical roots in the Southwest, revealing a past that has been otherwise excluded from school textbooks and the mass media. Noldo es un chico mexicoamericano, quien, después de construir su propio patinete de materiales de desecho, es mágicamente transportado del San Antonio de los años 50’s a la Batalla de el Álamo, en donde se hace amigo de un muchacho que había vivido más que cien años antes. Él vive aquellos tiempos tan difíciles, siendo muy creativo con lo poco que tiene.
Oro, Incienso y Mirra. Ariel González Calzada. ISBN: 978-1-888205-40-4. $9.50.
Cuando le dije a mi esposa que "Oro, Incienso y Mirra" era un libro tanto para niños como para aquellos chiquillos de antaño que ahora son viejos ella sonrió dejándome desconcertado. He aquí el por qué de mi confusión: José, Patricia, y Pablo son tres niños que, como tantos en el mundo, sufren las consecuencias de una sociedad desigual. Sumergidos en sus universos de contradicciones ven por primera vez un árbol de navidad. Les pareció mágico.
Siguiendo su rastro conocen a Rocío del Valle, una anciana que, medio siglo atrás, había sido una actriz famosa, sin embargo, ahora estaba abandonada. Junto a ella descubren a un Dios que, a pesar de estar prohibido, los ama. Aprenden que trabajar por amor es mejor que por dinero; y que, aunque no tengan nada, son tan importantes y únicos como aquellos que lo tienen todo ¡Un momento! Pensándolo mejor, ya entiendo para quienes escribí este libro: para los viejos que, víctimas de la sociedad, no pudieron ser niños, y para los niños que, por el mismo motivo, nunca llegaran a ser viejos.
Por la Calle North Claremont: Beto Stories. By Adolfo Butch Cárdenas. Yasmeen Namazie and Genevieve Miller, Editors. ISBN: 978-1481182911. $22.95.
In a world of literacy education where Hispanic literature is still a rarity, Por la Calle North Claremont: Beto Stories are a gem in that it will provide students with the confidence to see the importance of their own childhood experiences. Students can read this book knowing that Hispanic literature does not have to portray children in worlds of poverty with barrios full of unloving parents, racial turmoil, rampant crime, dog-eat-dog politics, and other hopeless situations. The author provides children with the hope of living a life with the same good natured character Beto encourages, and he also gives voice to those of us who grew up in happy homes, with loving parents and good friends. Of course, the book is true to reality in that Beto does experience the usual turmoil many children face such as not always getting everything he wants, stressful school relations, family disputes and corporal punishment. Yet, Beto ends up okay with the help of those who at times drive him crazy, yet love him always—his friends and family. The book’s ending will also leave students wondering what happens next to Beto as he grows into a fine young man, always honest, loyal, responsible, and fun-loving.
Xavier and the Bully. Xavier y el Chico Malo. Ronald W. Lemley Macías. Colección Floricanto Juvenil. ISBN:13: 978-1505209136. $12.95
When the roof of their old school fell in, Xavier and his friends are transferred to a newer school at the edge of the city.
They wondered if a group of Spanish speaking kids from the farm lands of the west county would get along in the new place.
Xavier had driven by it a few times with his father and it looked like a big white castle surrounded by gardens. What were the students like? Xavier hoped that they weren’t creepy or mean like the tricky Jones boys on the Kid’s Network.
Cuando se cayó el techo de su vieja escuela, Xavier y sus amigos fueron transferidos a una escuela nueva en el borde de la ciudad.
Se preguntaban si un grupo de niños de habla hispana de las tierras agrícolas de la provincia al oeste pudiera llevarse bien en el nuevo lugar.
Xavier había pasado por alli un par de veces con su padre y parecía un gran castillo blanco rodeado de jardines. ¿Cómo serían los estudiantes? Xavier esperaba que no fueran tan difíciles como los chicos malos Jones del Kid’s Network.
Ronald Lemley Macias is a bilingual teacher who grew up in Northern California. Much of the inspiration for this book was taken from real experiences from his childhood in the Pacific Northwest.
Ronald Lemley Macias es un maestro bilingüe que se crió en el norte de California. Gran parte de la inspiración para este libro fue tomada de experiencias reales de su infancia en el noroeste del Pacífico.