Penguin/Nancy Paulsen. 2023, Ages 10 and up
"Mexican American Celina Teresa Guerrera Amaya and her family follow traditions from both cultures. However, in school, her teachers only want her to be American and don’t care about her Chicana identity; she tries to go by Tere and the teachers tell her she pronounces her name wrong. Thankfully she has a loving and supporting family and finds friends who understand and respect her culture. With inspiration from her grandmother and the support of a teacher trying to do better, Celina and her friends decide to put on a celebration of different cultures. Things take a turn when a global pandemic hits and the world shuts down. Now, on top of her worries about her father who has been deported, Celina must face a challenging pandemic, fear of her grandmother catching the virus, and finding joy despite it all. But she is a Guerrera, a woman warrior; she has a voice and writing talent, and she can still use that to show the world the beauty of all cultures. "Written in verse, this is a timely novel ... .an insightful, timely, and discussion-worthy read. This beautifully written contemporary novel is a highly recommended purchase for library collections." -- School Library Journal
This book received a starred review from Publishers' Weekly.
I’ll Always Come Back to You!
Eerdmans, 2022. Illustrated by Grace Wong.
The delightful, funny, and loving promise of a parent to a young child, this book will touch the hearts of young and old. Based on the author’s promise to her own newly adopted toddler in 2006, it reassures the child with separation anxiety, as well as those affected by abandonment issues, custody situations, parental deployments, or any separation from a caring adult.
The Last Butterfly / La Ultima Mariposa
by Regina Moya and Carmen Tafolla, FlowerSong/Juventud Press, 2021.
With Moya's colorful illustrations and a very poetic narrative, this book tells the inspiring tale of a brave young Monarch butterfly, a small boy in Michoacan, Mexico, and a tiny blue planet that dances around the sun. With both English and Spanish texts on each spread and delightful back matter with instructions for group and individual projects, this story of respect for the living creatures around us and the magic powers we hold inside us, is a perfect read for children between 5 and 12 who care about their planet.
Medalla de Honor del Premio CampoyAda, and Silver Medal for Most Inspiring Children's Picture Book for International Latino Book Awards.
What Can You Do with a Paleta?
Now available through Penguin Random House, Hardback 2009. Paperback, 2014. Illustrated by Magaly Morales.
This beautifully illustrated affirmation of the smells and sounds and tastes of a Mexican-American barrio is a delightful, touching, and playful trip into the many imaginative uses a young girl finds for the icy, natural fruit treat of a Mexican paleta.
Winner of the Americas Award, the Tomas Rivera Book Award, and the Charlotte Zolotow Award.
What Can You Do with a Rebozo?
Now available through Penguin Random House, 2008. Illustrated by Amy Cordova.
Recognized as an ALA Notable Book, a Pura Belpre Honor Book for Illustration, and on the Texas Library Association’s Texas 2X2 Reading List, What Can You DO with a Rebozo is a wonderful celebration of the power of imagination and play., following a spunky young Mexican American girl through her discovery of many uses for her Mom’s red Mexican shawl.
“Para los ninos, Tafolla and Córdova weave together a delightful swirl of color, rhythm, and rhyme, delightful as a rebozo.”
--- Pat Mora, award-winning author of more than twenty children’s books
That’s Not Fair!: Emma Tenayuca’s Struggle for Justice /
¡No es Justo!:La Lucha de Emma Tenayuca por la Justicia
Wings Press, 2008. Illustrated by Terry Ybañez.
This is the first book ever published about the significant Latina civil rights leader from the 1930s, who at the tender age of 22, organized twelve thousand pecan shellers in a strike that was to become the first successful action in the Mexican American struggle for political and economic justice. Aimed at readers 6 and up, That’s Not Fair was the April 2008 national Las Comadres Book Selection, and was listed in Críticas Magazine’s Best Children’s Books of 2008. School Library Journal calls it “an important book celebrating the struggle for justice and civil rights.”