Funny Bones

Funny Bones tells the story of how the amusing calaveras—skeletons performing various everyday or festive activities—came to be. They are the creation of Mexican artist José Guadalupe (Lupe) Posada (1852–1913). In a country that was not known for freedom of speech, he first drew political cartoons, much to the amusement of the local population but not the politicians. He continued to draw cartoons throughout much of his life, but he is best known today for his calavera drawings.

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Red Ridin’ In The Hood: And Other Cuentos

Eleven classic tales are retold with an injection of Latino culture, providing a twist on the traditional forms while sustaining a freshness all their own. The title story, “Red Ridin’ in the Hood,” moves the setting to the barrio, where Red decides to brave dangerous Forest Street in order to reach her abuelita and encounters the menacing wolf in a thumping Chevy lowrider. Some stories are set in the Mexican countryside; in “Belleza y La Bestia,” the beautiful heroine is a defender of the Revolution and teaches the beast about the righteousness of the freedom fighters. “El Día de los Muertos,” a retelling of the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, takes place in the time of the Aztecs and casts Orpheus as the feather-maker Nochehuatl.

These and the other cuentos in this book are further brought to life by abundant illustrations, by turns comical and poignant.

Pablo Remembers

From October 31 to November 2, people in Mexico celebrate the festival of el Dia de Los Muertos, the Day of the Dead. This photodocumentary follows Pablo and his family as they prepare to honor the memory of Pablo’s grandmother. Ancona’s “photographs catch the affirmation of life that fills the Mexican festival arising from both Aztec and Christian customs honoring the dead….Joyful.”–Chicago Tribune. “This intriguing book makes an excellent offering during the Halloween season.”–School Library Journal. Also available in a Spanish Language edition, Pablo Recuerda.

I Remember Abuelito / Yo recuerdo a Abuelito: A Day of The Dead Story / Un Cuento del Dia de los Muertos (Spanish Edition)

It’s the Day of the Dead! It’s time to celebrate! In this bilingual book, a young girl is busy helping her family prepare to honor those who have died. First she goes with her mama to the market to buy pan de muerto. Then she lays a path of marigold petals with her papa. But mostly, she thinks of her abuelito. She misses him very much and is excited for his spirit to visit that night. And when she sees the butterflies fly through the sky, she knows that his spirit is with them. Written in both Spanish and English, this book includes activities and recipes just right for any Day of the Dead celebration.

Uncle Monarch and the Day of the Dead

When the monarch butterflies return to the Mexican countryside where Lupita lives, she knows that it means that Da de Muertos, the Day of the Dead, is near. She and her favorite uncle watch the butterflies as they flutter in the trees. When a butterfly lands on Lupitas hand, her uncle reminds her that she should never capture or hurt a monarch because they are believed to be the souls of the departed.