It Feels Like Family/Se siente como familia

Piñata Bks. May 2024. 32p. Tr $18.95. ISBN 9781558859906. BL.
K-Gr 2–A relatable, Spanish-language picture book about coping with divorce. Elena and little brother Miguel’s parents have recently divorced. The girl is uncomfortable shuttling back and forth between two homes. Things they used to do as a family have to be enjoyed with either one parent or the other. The tub of popcorn they used to share at the movies feels too large. Rico the cat lives with Mami, so Papi can no longer rub his belly. It doesn’t feel like family anymore. With the help of both sets of grandparents and her two parents, Elena slowly acclimates to the new living arrangements. Papi can’t help Miguel with his homework, but Abuelo chips in with his Hispanic Heritage Month project. Abuela gives Elena a gold ring with a red heart that was passed down by her mother. It symbolizes the love that has connected their family for over 100 years. The siblings attend a cousin’s birthday party, and the festivities “feel like family.” Both sides attend Elena’s soccer game, and she’s finally assured that they are still one family. The touching, child-appropriate text is presented in a very kid-friendly voice with relevant examples. The bilingual narrative is accessible in both languages, with the English presented first and the Spanish following on the next page. The spreads are designed to help facilitate a parallel reading experience. The bright art makes the tale very approachable. Elena’s family members have a variety of skin colors.
VERDICT A great choice for collections in need of books with diverse family composition.

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