Celebrating Latin American Culture
The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano (Scholastic; Gr 6–10) by Sonia Manzano won the 2013 Americas Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature, established by the Consortium for Latin American Studies Programs (CLASP) “to encourage and commend authors, illustrators, and publishers who produce quality children’s and young adult books that portray Latin America, the Caribbean, or Latinos in the United States, and to provide teachers with recommendations for classroom use.”
In Manzano’s novel, 14-year-old Evelyn Serrano lives in Spanish Harlem in 1969. The family is of Puerto Rican descent, and the teenager struggles with her own sense of identity and what it means to be Puerto Rican in El Barrio.
Honorable Mention went to Martin de Porres: The Rose in the Desert (Clarion; Gr 2–4) written by Gary D. Schmidt and illustrated by David Diaz. The picture-book biography tells the story of the life of the first black saint of the Americas who was born in 1579 in Lima, Peru.
There were also three Commended Titles: Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe (S & S; Gr 9 Up) by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, Drummer Boy of John John (Lee & Low; PreS-Gr 3) written by Mark Greenwood and illustrated by Frané Lessac, and In Darkness (Bloomsbury; Gr 9 Up) by Nick Lake.
Titles published in 2012 were considered for the 2013 award. Books are judged for their literary quality; cultural contextualization; exceptional integration of text, illustration, and design; and potential for classroom use. The award presentation will be held on October 5, 2013 at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.
Celebrate International Dot Day with its creator, Peter H. Reynolds, at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, MA, on September 15, 2013 from 1–4 pm EST. The event was inspired by Reynolds’s book for young readers, The Dot (Candlewick, 2003), that “encourages children and adults to unleash their inner creativity through reading, art, and more.” International Dot Day has been celebrated in classrooms and libraries since 2009.
Events at the Carle include a book signing with Reynolds, a storytime, screening of the three films (Weston Woods) in Reynolds’s “Creatrilogy” series (The Dot, Ish, and Sky Color). All the activities are free with Museum admission.
“What began as one little dot on the pages of a book has grown into a movement that has countless people fearlessly expressing their creativity—not only on International Dot Day, but now all year long,” noted Reynolds.
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