Thursday, June 08, 2017

Juana & Lucas by Juana Medina

In this early chapter book Juana tells us about her life in Bogotá, Columbia, with her dog Lucas. Medina illustrates her daily dramas with bright colors and a child-like style. Juana’s feelings and strong opinions are printed in extra-large letters that sometimes bend or run across the page. She loves her dog and her city and Brussels sprouts. But she does not like her school uniform and does not want to have to learn “the English.”

When a grown-up says something is going to be a ton of fun, it means there will be NO FUN AT ALL. Not even a single bit of fun. Nada de fun.”  Her grandparents suggest a trip to “Spaceland in Florida in the U. S. of A.” where she will need to speak English to her superhero Astroman.

Juana & Lucas won the 2017 Pura Belpre Author Award. Raúl Gonzalez, illustrator of Lowriders to the Center of the Earth, received the Pura Belpre Illustrator Award. Both will delight young readers, who will even pick up a little Spanish along the way. 

 Review by Carolyn Caywood, retired from VBPL

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