Sofi Paints Her Dreams: Sofi Pinta Sus Suenos

Piñata. May 2019. 32p. glossary. Tr $17.95. ISBN 9781558858831.
PreS-Gr 2–Sofi loves art class, but she is discouraged and frustrated when she can’t make purple for her color wheel. To cheer her up, Sofi’s older sister Esmeralda buys her a snow cone on their walk home from school. As Sofi turns the corner, she encounters a woman, Doña Chepa, who has a beautiful garden and a half-painted mural. She runs her fingers over the paint, and using her colorful imagination, she finds herself in the Dominican Republic, where she meets young Juan Luis, a musician who needs help finishing his song. “I just need help finding a word that rhymes with sea,” says Juan Luis, and Sofi finds the perfect words: “My songs and dreams set me free/mis cantos y sueños pueden liberar.” With that, they’re transported across the river to Haiti to see Juan Luis’s friend, Guerlande Balan, who is creating a large metal mermaid sculpture in her workshop. When she asks Sofi to help her paint the mermaid’s tail purple, Sofi isn’t sure of herself, but by drawing inspiration from her songs and dreams, Sofi creates the most beautiful shade of purple that Guerlande has ever seen. Sofi returns to her neighborhood, where she helps Doña Chepa finish her mural using her beautiful new shade of purple that’s all her own. Filled with color, imagination, and music, this bilingual picture book is a captivating journey through Caribbean culture and pays tribute to some of its most influential artists. Bright and dazzling illustrations mimic the rhythms of both the story and its settings. Readers are introduced to metal art and other concepts with a comprehensive glossary at the end of the book.
VERDICT This companion to Sofi and the Magic, Musical Mural is an homage to Caribbean culture and a great addition to any children’s collection

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