Waiting For The Biblioburro

When a man brings to a remote village two burros, Alfa and Beto, loaded with books the children can borrow, Ana’s excitement leads her to write a book of her own as she waits for the BibliBurro to return. Includes glossary of Spanish terms and a note on the true story of Colombia’s BiblioBurro and mobile libraries in other countries.

One thought on “Waiting For The Biblioburro

  1. Castrodad & Parker says:

    My Take: Ann Parker
    I had the opportunity to listen to Monica Brown talk about her book, Waiting for the Biblioburro, at the 2012 Tucson Festival of Books held last March at the UA campus. Monica shared that she came from a “global” family and began writing books for children because she wanted to introduce them to the beauty of Latin American culture. She wrote a series of books about famous Latin Americans, from Celia Cruz to Gabriela Mistral to Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Some of these books have been published in dual language English/Spanish versions.
    Monica decided to write Waiting for the Biblioburro when she learned the story of Luis Soriano, the founder of the Biblioburro library, a story that certainly captures the imaginations of children and adults alike. Luis wanted to give children in remote areas of Colombia access to books, so he loaded up his two burros, Alfa and Beto, with a travelling library; so far, he and his biblioburros have brought the joy of books to over 4,000 children.
    Monica said that Luis’s story sparked her imagination because it showed just how far someone would go to read a book. She wrote it from the point of view of Ana, a little girl whose own imagination is set free by the books the biblioburros bring to her distant village. Monica says the story also spoke to her because it contained the themes of finding your voice, of imagination and determination, of social justice and what we can do to spread literacy, and particularly to help children in the US not only appreciate their opportunities but to help them realize that no matter what their personal circumstances are their personal imaginations have no limits.
    Waiting for the Biblioburro is a charming story of a young girl whose life is changed through the power of books and the determination of one man to change the world one child at a time. I think children will be intrigued by the unique nature of this traveling library and by Ana’s dream of writing her own stories after reading the stories others have written.

    My Take: Patricia Castrodad
    Interesting theme!!! Although I’ve visited many Latin American countries I never encountered a librarian and library that traveled long distances. Nonetheless, I shared with my family my experience reading the book. My sister who has lived in many places around the world like for example; Romania, London, Madrid, among other, mentioned that a friend of hers who had studied Media and Communications worked as a librarian who moved in a van delivering books around rural areas in England, UK. Check mobile libraries links below.
    As I read there were a couple of things that caught my attention as a Puerto Rican, women, teacher, mother, daughter; interesting integration of Spanish words into the text. Smoothly blends with the text and story. I naturally read the words in Spanish, so it’s not forced into the text. As I observed my nine year old read the book it seemed part of her repertoire of Spanish words.
    Also, how the pleasure of reading a book evokes reading it over and over, many times, but also the writing of a book; just like Ana the character in the book experienced. I think this is an essential aspect of reading for pleasure, we want to children to read for pleasure and become life- long readers and writers.
    I think many Latin Americans and Caribbeans can relate to the characters in the story like Ana and the librarian in terms of physical characteristics. I think the illustrator is very careful in representing these characters, although the story is set in rural area of Colombia.
    The colors in the illustrations, the words, kept me moving along the story.
    Most of all, I imagined how many children in the rural areas in Puerto Rico like in other rural areas in the Caribbean would enjoy having books, literature as part of their lives.

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