Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Gracias Thanks

Mora, Pat. 2009. Gracias / Thanks (English and Spanish Edition). New York: Lee & Low.

A small boy is thankful for the many small things that we often take for granted,
For the ladybug that landed on my finger, a little red flying surprise, thanks. ... For my little brother, who threw mashed peas at my sister and made me laugh so hard I fell off my chair, thanks.
Each sentence is presented on a double-spread page, with Spanish appearing on one page and English on the next. The illustrations are done in a warm and weathered style, reminiscent of a well-worn, favorite desk or chair. The narrator is of Hispanic descent, his mother appears to be white, friends and schoolchildren are of varying races. All are portrayed with slightly oversized heads, highlighting soft and friendly features. Hispanic influence is prominent throughout the book - Spanish language books on the shelves, a brightly colored tile floor, palm trees, a red-tiled roof. His American side is apparent in the US dollar received from Abuelita, his baseball gear and posters, his English language homework, and sadly (humorously?) the garden gnome in the yard.

A cheery and light-hearted book of gratitude. Perfect for storytime and as a gentle reminder that we all have much to be thankful for; sometimes the little things are the most precious.

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