Quinceanera: English-Language Edition

You are invited to the biggest party of Cindy Chvez’s life. In text and gorgeous color photos, Elizabeth King takes us to this joyous, once-in-a-lifetime event–the quinceañera. It is the celebration of a Latina’s fifteenth birthday, a coming-of-age ritual in which a community welcomes its newest adult member with a church service, a feast, and dancing. The tradition, which has its roots in Aztec and Mexican custom, is popular in the United States. With a lavish dress, an honor court of friends, a big cake, and a night filled with music, the quinceañera is a chance for a young woman to feel like a queen. But there are solemn, quiet moments, too, particularly at the Mass held before the party. The history, significance, and fun of the quinceañera are warmly recounted in this lovely book. It is an inviting glimpse at a part of American culture for newcomers to the tradition, and a special scrapbook for those anticipating or remembering their own quinceañera.

Fiesta Fiasco

There is another desert party in the works in this spicy companion book to Mañana, Iguana. This time it is Snake’s birthday, and Iguana, Tortoise, and Rabbit are shopping for birthday gifts to bring to his fiesta. But what presents should they buy for Snake? In a sneaky twist, Rabbit convinces them to buy gifts that aren’t for Snake at all—but for him! With a clever text, a spattering of Spanish vocabulary. and lively illustrations, this author-illustrator team presents quite the fiesta fiasco. Glossary included.

Hello, Amigos!

Extends a warm invitation to share Frankie Valdez’s birthday and to sample his culture’s traditional festivities.

Tooth On The Loose

An original take on losing a tooth. This little girl has tried everything to make her loose tooth come out before her dad’s birthday (except letting her brother yank it) so she’ll have money to buy him a gift. Nothing has worked and now it’s the big day. She just can’t go to his party empty handed! At the last second, her mom helps her think of a gift that doesn’t require any money—just imagination and heart. I have no dinero, this card’s all I’ve got. But, Papi, te quiero, I love you a lot. And her dad couldnÂ’t be happier. Susan Middleton Elya’s trademark mix of Spanish vocabulary and fun verse combined with vibrant paintings by Jenny Mattheson will inspire lots of homemade gifts (and patience with loose teeth).

The Perfect Pinata/La Pinata Perfecta

Marisa’s sixth birthday was drawing near, and today her mother took her to buy a piñata. At the store, Marisa saw a beautiful butterfly piñata and knew she had to have it. “It’s perfect for my party!” she exclaimed. When they brought the piñata home, her mother wanted to put it in the closet, but Marisa begged to keep it on her dresser. That week Marisa took her butterfly everywhere, and it watched over her at night while she slept. The morning of the party, Mama filled the piñata with candy and toys. Soon the guests arrived. It was time to hit the piñata! Marisa was the first in line. But the butterfly looked down at her with its happy eyes, and Marisa started to cry. “I can’t do it!” she said as she ran into the house.

Not Last Night But the Night Before

A little boy’s unexpected guests look oddly familiar in this fanciful ode to birthdays — and big imaginations.NOT LAST NIGHT BUT THE NIGHT BEFORE,THREE BLACK CATS CAME KNOCKING AT THE DOOR.And before you know it, the man in the moon is knocking, followed by three little pigs, Little Bo-peep, Miss Muffet, and many more visitors, all in a rush. But where are they going so willy-nilly, gifts in hand? Colin McNaughton’s energetic rhymes, whimsically illustrated by Emma Chichester Clark, transform one child’s quiet night into a celebration full of beloved fairy-tale characters.

The Fairytale Cake

“We make a cake, We bake a cake, And send it on its way! “Beloved characters from classic nursery rhymes — everyone from Humpty Dumpty to Little Bo Peep to Old King Cole — collaborate to bake the most perfect, towering, delicious cake . . . and roll it along to its special recipient — the birthday boy or girl! Mark Sperring’s spare but sweet text combined with Jonathan Langley’s bright, timeless artwork make for a fun, read-aloud book that allows readers to pick out their favorite nursery rhyme characters in the illustrations. Ideal for birthdays . . . or any occasion!

Anne Frank, Beyond the Diary: A Photographic Remembrance

On Friday, June 12, Anne Frank woke up at six o’clock in the morning. It wasn’t much of a surprise that she was up so early. Today was her birthday. She was 13 years old. Anne received many presents but the most precious was one given her by her parents. It was a hardcover diary, bound in red and white–checkered cloth.

Escape From Saigon: A Vietnam War Orphan Becomes An American Boy

Chronicles the experiences of an orphaned Amerasian boy from his birth and early childhood in Saigon through his departure from Vietnam in the 1975 Operation Babylift and his subsequent life as the adopted son of an American family in Ohio.