Proud to Be Latino: Food/Comida

Familius. Sept. 2019. 20p. Board $12.99. ISBN 9781641701549.
PreS-Gr 1–Much like a menu, this book highlights the featured foods by category, from crops like corn and plantains, pairings like rice and beans, to major food groups like meats and seafood, with brief, upbeat descriptions of their importance to Latino cuisine. English and Spanish text mirror one another on each colorful spread, surrounded by digital illustrations of the fare from different countries that exemplify the category, like mangú, pupusas, and tacu tacu. Fascinating tidbits of information are included that connect the popularity of certain dishes or foods with the historical or geographic characteristics of Latin American nations (“Seafood dishes are a result of 31,000 miles of coastline”). Food is often portrayed in literature as integral to Latino cultures, but drawing the connections among foods across those countries is refreshing and rare. Notably, the countries of origin for the dishes are not included, a result, perhaps, of the limiting board book format.
VERDICT Visually appealing and sure to pique the appetite of readers of varying ages. Recommended.

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