Latinitas:Celebrating 40 Big Dreamers

Discover how 40 influential Latinas became the women we celebrate today! In this collection of short biographies from all over Latin America and across the United States, Juliet Menéndez explores the first small steps that set the Latinitas off on their journeys. With gorgeous, hand-painted illustrations, Menéndez shines a spotlight on the power of childhood dreams.

Fat Chance, Charlie Vega

People sometimes have a problem with that last one. Especially her mom. Charlie wants a good relationship with her body, but it’s hard, and her mom leaving a billion weight loss shakes on her dresser doesn’t help. The world and everyone in it have ideas about what she should look like: thinner, lighter, slimmer-faced, straighter-haired. Be smaller. Be whiter. Be quieter.
But there’s one person who’s always in Charlie’s corner: her best friend Amelia. Slim. Popular. Athletic. Totally dope. So when Charlie starts a tentative relationship with cute classmate Brian, the first worthwhile guy to notice her, everything is perfect until she learns one thing–he asked Amelia out first. So is she his second choice or what? Does he even really see her?

Your Mama

Yo’ mama so sweet, she could be a bakery. She dresses so fine, she could have a clothing line. And, even when you mess up, she’s so forgiving, she lets you keep on living. Heartwarming and richly imagined, Your Mama twists an old joke into a point of pride that honors the love, hard work, and dedication of mamas everywhere.

A Sled For Gabo

On the day it snows, Gabo sees kids tugging sleds up the hill, then coasting down, whooping all the while. Gabo wishes he could join them, but his hat is too small, and he doesn’t have boots or a sled.
But he does have warm and welcoming neighbors in his new town who help him solve the problem in the sweetest way possible!

Sleeping With The Light On

Davico lives with his family above La Casita – the Little House – in Guatemala City in the early 1950s. But it’s not just a little house. It’s also the family restaurant!
The restaurant provides plenty of distraction and adventure for Davico and his older brother, Felipe. The mean cook, Augusto, and the always-late waiter, Otto, love to play tricks on Davico. There’s a huge oven in the gas cookstove, which Felipe knows how to light ― if he can only reach the box of matches above the stove. And there’s the endless fascination of the glass tank of live lobsters ― including the king of them all, Genghis Khan, who stares at Davico with round unblinking black eyes, waving his antennas like submarine periscopes. Could Genghis Khan climb on the back of the other lobsters and get out of the tank, Davico wonders. Could he move faster on land than in the water?

Efrén Divided

While his father works two jobs, seventh-grader Efren Nava must take care of his twin siblings, kindergartners Max and Mia, after their mother is deported to Mexico. Includes glossary of Spanish words.

Efrén Divided has been discussed in My Take/Your Take for April 2021.

The Land Of The Cranes

Nine-year-old Betita and her parents fled Mexico after her uncle was killed by the cartels, and settled in Los Angeles seeking political asylum and safety in what her father calls Aztlan, the land of the cranes; but now they have been swept up by by the government’s Immigration Customs Enforcement, her father deported back to Mexico, and Betita and her mother confined in a family detention camp–Betita finds heart in her imagination and the picture poems her father taught her, but each day threatens to further tear her family apart.

The Way To Rio Luna

Eleven-year-old Danny Monteverde believes in magic, he believes that the enchanted land of Rio Luna in his older sister’s favorite book is real, and most of all he believes that if he can find the way to Rio Luna he will find his sister Pili there, because he does not believe that his sister would run away from the group home where they lived and leave him behind; but after years of being passed from one foster family to another his faith begins to fade–until one day he finds a mysterious book in the library that contains a map to Rio Luna…and a way to find Pili.

Stella Diaz Never Gives Up

Stella gets a big surprise when her mom plans a trip to visit their family in Mexico! Stella loves marine animals, and she can’t wait to see the ocean for the first time . . . until she arrives and learns that the sea and its life forms are in danger due to pollution. Stella wants to save the ocean, but she knows she can’t do it alone. It’s going to take a lot of work and help from old and new friends to make a difference, but Stella Díaz never gives up! This is the second middle-grade novel from award-winning picture book author and illustrator Angela Dominguez. Based on the author’s experiences growing up Mexican-American, this infectiously charming character comes to life through relatable story-telling including simple Spanish vocabulary and adorable black-and-white art throughout.