Dolly's Reviews > The Storyteller's Candle/La velita de los cuentos

The Storyteller's Candle/La velita de los cuentos by Lucia M. Gonzalez
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Apr 23, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: 2012, childrens, caribbean, christmas, education-school, other-usa, ocean-seashore, religion-philosophy, spain-spanish-hispanic, poetry-song-music, library, dance, historical-fiction, biography, picture-book-club
Recommended for: parents reading with their children
Read on April 20, 2012 , read count: 1

This is a wonderful story about the first Puerto Rican librarian in the New York Public Library system. The story describes how she went into the schools to reach out to all children, but especially the Spanish-speaking children who had come to New York with their families. She planned programs that reminded those from Puerto Rico of their life there and helped them to find Spanish language resources.

This book has a simple narrative that is printed on each page in both English and Spanish and is accompanied by mixed media illustrations that combine layers of oil washes with paper collage, using real newspapers from 1930. The effect is sweetly old fashioned and very entertaining. I love that the children were so excited to go to the library and I love the fact that they were the ones who convinced the adults to explore the library, too. It was nice that a few Spanish words were incorporated into the English section and vice versa.

Overall, I thought this was an entertaining story that tells a little bit about the history of Puerto Rican people coming to live in New York and about a special librarian who made them feel at home. I liked that the book provides a short biography of her life at the end of the story. The fact that this tale is based on a real person makes it even better. We really enjoyed reading this story together.

This story was selected as one of the books for the May 2010 - Latino reads at the Picture-Book Club in the Children's Books Group here at Goodreads.

interesting quote:
"Today, with everyone's help, we brought the warmth and beauty of Puerto Rico to New York. Remember, the library belongs to you all. We'll blow out the storyteller's candle, and your wish will come true."
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