I will begin by saying that this book is very personal for me, and in many ways. It was one of the very first books I encountered by esteemed author, Pat Mora. I had the honor of seeing her speak at a library perhaps one or two years ago. Also, when I was attending UC Riverside, the library was…
I also think Pat Mora is a precious gift to the children’s books world. She’s written so many stellar books. My favorites are Dona Flor, Yum! Mmmm! Que Rico! and Gracias (especially because the artwork by John Parra is amazing). It’s so important that Pat Mora is telling these stories.
I don’t totally agree with this piece and have actually featured a number of books on foster youth here, but I do appreciate another writer taking on the topic of books that adopted kids themselves like to read (not just the books that everyone likes to read about adopted kids).
“The most comprehensive study of 20th century children’s books ever undertaken in the United States has found a bias towards tales that feature men and boys as lead characters. Surprisingly, researchers found that even when the characters are animals, they tend to be male.”
Many years ago as a wee child, I fell madly in love with a book while watching Reading Rainbow. Yes, that Reading Rainbow. That book happened to be Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters. It is an amazing African Folktale about sisters, family, vanity, learning your lesson, pride, so many things in one…
“I find a teacher in the birds, wind, clouds, ocean, the way people talk and interact. I come from one of the oldest tradition of communication: oral tradition. At my house we were always telling stories. I believe part of my life as a writer started as a listener. Being a good listener play an important role in my life as a writer.”—
“But when you read books you almost feel like you’re out there in the world. Like you’re going on this adventure right with the main character. At least, that’s the way I do it. It’s actually not that bad. Even if it is mad nerdy.”—Matt de la Pena, We Were Here
“What’s wrong with our children? …Adults telling children to be honest while lying and cheating. Adults telling children not to be violent while marketing and glorifying violence…I believe that adult hypocrisy is the biggest problem children face in America.”—Marian Wright Edelman (Children’s Advocate)
"Libraries are already, naturally, a part of the safety net, because they empower their community with equitable access to knowledge…If a community doesn’t feel ownership of its library, it’s going to go away. And if the people at the city and the county aren’t made to understand a library’s value for the community, they’re not going to fund it. It breaks my heart that libraries have to be fought for, that their role and their potential isn’t known by heart by everyone. But that’s where we are. If we want to keep our libraries, our libraries need champions."
"42% of American kids — more than 31 million — grow up in families that lack the income to cover basic needs like rent, childcare, food and transportation… What makes the problem even worse is that 80 percent of pre-school and after school programs serving low-income children do not have any children’s books, either, largely because they lack the money to buy them."