When Lola Visits

HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen. May 2021. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780062972859.
PreS-Gr 1–Lola isn’t just anyone—she’s a beloved grandmother, visiting from the Philippines, as she does every summer. In Asis’s citrus-colored splashes of line and form and love, the joy of Lola’s visit culminates in the Kamayan, with treats spread across bright green banana leaves that act as centerpiece and tablecloth. When the celebration is over and the family takes Lola back to the airport, “Our house is a little grayer without her soft, sweet singing in Tagalog and Ilocano. And the bitter melon tastes extra bitter in tonight’s dinner—not like how Lola makes it at all.” This book will make readers long for the scents and tastes the narrator describes, and the warmth and happiness of summertime. Whether cooking in the kitchen or cooling by the pool, Lola is the party, and readers are all invited to participate.
VERDICT With a smooth flow of new vocabulary and a universal nod to the meaning of family, this will be a storytime favorite.

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