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Mango, Abuela, and Me

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  1,435 ratings  ·  366 reviews
When a little girl’s far-away grandmother comes to stay, love and patience transcend language in a tender story written by acclaimed author Meg Medina.

Mia’s abuela has left her sunny house with parrots and palm trees to live with Mia and her parents in the city. The night she arrives, Mia tries to share her favorite book with Abuela before they go to sleep and discovers th
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published August 25th 2015 by Candlewick Press
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Average rating 4.22  · 
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 ·  1,435 ratings  ·  366 reviews

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Oct 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
There was so much to love about this book - I loved the "how-tos" of learning a language (labeling EVERYTHING). I loved the use of teaching the parrot as a way to bring Mia and Abuela closer. I LOVED that it wasn't just "teach my foreign grandmother English," but it was also Mia learning Spanish, and about her family and heritage. It was great to see the two of them start by being unable to speak about nearly anything to being able to talk about "the things an abuela should know" by the end. ...more
Lauren Waters
Jul 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
An important book about language, communication, family and love.
Jan 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Those Looking for Children's Stories About Communicating Across Language Barriers
When Mia's Abuela, or grandmother, comes to stay with her family in the city, the young girl doesn't have enough Spanish, and her grandmother doesn't have enough English, for the two to communicate with one another. Mia tries a number of things - pointing and naming objects, taping English labels on everything in the apartment - but nothing works. Then she and her mother buy Abuela a parrot named Mango, and that seems to help with language acquisition on both sides...

It easy to see why Meg Medin
Mississippi Library Commission
Mango, Abuela, and Me is an exceptional picture book that snagged Pura Belpre honors for both the author and illustrator. The illustrations are bright and cheerful and they reinforce the positive message of the book: love knows no language. Reading about how Mia and her abuela bond and grow closer as they learn each other's languages and move past their language barriers is incredibly sweet. As a bonus, readers will pick up a few words of Spanish, just like Mia. Highly recommended. ...more
Edward Sullivan
Aug 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Love transcends a language barrier between a young girl and her grandmother. Warm and endearing.
Aug 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is freaking adorable. It reminds me of mi familia, and the joys of having multiple ways to say “I love you”.
Daniel Walsh
Summary- Mia's grandmother, Abuela moves into the house with Mia's family. She is unable to understand English and can not read Mia's stories. Mia uses her newly bought parrot, Mango, to help teach her grandmother English.
Personal Response- I like how this book ties together teamwork and family. Mia seems very caring that she wants to help her Abuela speak while also finding new ways to help her too. I like how she first used labels around the house to help her grandmother learn English names fo
Mango, Abuela and Me is a lovely children's book that navigates the latino family. A story about a little girl learning how to communicate with her grandmother who is fluent in a different language:Spanish. She lived far away and is now moving in. The vivid pictures add to the details in the story and help bring the story to life. ...more
Nov 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Love, love, love this book! Mia's grandmother has moved in to her house in the city. Mia finds out her grandmother can't read one of her favorite books because she doesn't know English. This is a great story because Mia helps her grandmother learn English but she also learns Spanish and more about her family. I really liked that the pictures were so vibrant and appealing. ...more
Krysten Morgan
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Grade Levels: 1-5
Themes: Families, communication, parrots
Major Award: Pura Belpre Award (2016)

Summary- This is the story of a young girl, Mia, whose grandmother from far away moves in with them. Mia discovers that there is a language barrier due to the fact that Mia speaks English and her grandmother speaks Spanish. At first, Mia is upset they can’t communicate and feels like she doesn’t know her grandmother. However, she starts teaching her grandmother English as she le
May 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Mia’s abuela has come to live with Mia and her family in the United States. She can’t speak English and Mia can’t speak Spanish, so the two of them spend time together in silence, feeding the birds and watching TV. Mia’s mother reminds her of how a classmate learned to speak English and Mia starts to work to teach her abuela the new language. They point at things and share the English and Spanish words. Mia labels items around the house with their English names. Then when Mia and her mother go t ...more
Teresa Moreland
Feb 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a touching book about a young girl whose grandma comes to live with her and her family. The little girl is so excited to have her grandma there, but there’s a problem, they don’t speak the same language. The author uses both Spanish and English in this story to share how two people find ways to grow close and communicate, despite a language barrier.

I chose this book because it reminded me of my life with my in-laws. My husband’s family speaks Spanish. Some of his family live here, while
Amy Wickham
"Mango, Abuela, and Me" written by Meg Medina and illustrated by Angela Dominguez is a 2016 Pura Belpré Author Award Honor Book and a 2016 Pura Belpré Illustrator Award Honor Book. A touching story detailing the story of a grandma "abuela" and Mia, a small child, this book invites readers into the lives of a Hispanic family at the time when Abuela comes to live with them.

At first, Mia is reluctant and shy to meet Abuela, even though they are family. Mia realizes very quickly that she has trouble
Dawn Moynihan
Do you know what an abuela is? [children respond] It means Grandma in Spanish. Do any of you know anyone who speaks another language? Do you know any words in another language for Grandma? [children respond] I know one. It's Norwegian. It's farmor. They actually have lots of words for Grandma, just like we do. When my Grandma was a little girl, growing up in North Dakota, she only spoke Norwegian. When she was five years old, she started school and learned how to speak English. She would come ho ...more
Mia’s abuela is coming to live with her family, and share her room! She lives too far away and needs to move from a home that’s just too much to care for. Mia’s shy, and the biggest challenge is that she doesn’t speak enough Spanish, and her grandmother doesn’t speak enough English for them to communicate well. However, as the days go by, and each learn new words, they get to share more. They walk to feed the birds, also “feeding words” to each other, and the same happens when they cook together ...more
Susan Huddleston
Feb 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: educ-378-spring
In today's society, there are a lot of families that experience where the family has to take in grandparents. There are also many bilingual families where the parents are fluent in their native language and in English. Depending on whether the parents speak both languages in the home or not, the children may not have the knowledge of their parents native language. One activity that the class could do would be to select a language to learn some words/names of items in the classroom.
Feb 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
In this Pura Belpré illustrator honor book, Mia struggles when her abuela comes to live in her house. They share a room, but that is all because "Abuela and I can't understand each other". One day Mia and her mom bring home a parrot hoping to cheer up abuela. The parrot, named Mango, ends up being the connection that they both needed. As they taught the parrot words, abuela became better at speaking English and Mia improved her Spanish. The illustrations really help portray the sadness of the ab ...more
Sep 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Mia’s grandmother comes and lives with her and her parents. Mia wants to tell her about her day at school but cannot communicate with her because she does not speak Spanish. Mia starts teaching her grandmother words in English while learning Spanish herself.

This book has won the Pura Belpre Award in 2016.

The book has colorful illustrations and keeps the readers engaged. Students can read the story by themselves or can be read to the class. Students would enjoy this story because they can relat
Apr 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: diverse-lit
This is a touching story about Mia, a little girl that helps her abuela learn English when she moves in. Mia’s creativity and willingness to teach her abuela is heartwarming. Their bond grows as they are able to communicate with each other in a new language. The use of Spanish words and phrases demonstrate how learning a new language can be difficult, but with perseverance and practice, it can be obtained. Bilingual students could relate to the sadness and difficulty in not being able to underst ...more
Westminster Library
Apr 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a great story that speaks to how the dynamics of Hispanic families have changed in terms of language. A young girl’s grandmother moves in with her family and they both find it difficult to communicate due to the language barrier. I love the fact that a conscious decision was made to break that barrier.

Find Mango, Abuela, and Me at the Westminster Public Library.

Susan  Dunn
Aug 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
When her abuela comes to live with them, she can't speak any English, and Mia's Spanish isn't much better. Slowly, the two teach each other words, but it's a frustrating road. Then Mia spots a parrot in a store window - like the one that abuela used to have back home. As Mia and abuela begin to teach Mango, they all benefit. A sweet story - too long for story time, but would be good for older kids. ...more
Dec 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
A sensitive picture book about a young girl teaching her Spanish-speaking grandmother English -- to speak and read. The illustrations are done in ink, gouache, and marker and capture their loving relationship, even when they don't understand each other's language. This is a gentle celebration of family that tells a relevant and heartwarming story. ...more
Nov 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is the story of how Mia and her Abuela find the key to unlocking their language when they find themselves as roommates in this tale of love, family, and communication. The illustrations and bright and the message one of patience and acceptance of heritage, self, and holding all parts of yourself and your heritage. Very good for the demographics in the local area as well.
Hannah McBride
Oct 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
When Mia's grandmother comes to live with her, they struggle to communicate because of a language barrier. As time passes and with the help of a pretty parrot named Mango, Mia and Abuela learn how to speak to each other with love. This has a lot of great beginner Spanish words for little ones! ...more
Liz B
This was a pleasant story about a grandmother, who speaks only Spanish, moving in with her son and his wife and most especially her granddaughter, who speaks only English.

This isn't going to be a reread for us, but we did like our first time through.
Jun 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Heart-warming inter-generational story. When Mia's grandmother comes to live with them, she loves her, but cannot communicate with her, and that is even more isolating for the grandmother. Topics include language, culture, and pets. Very sweet. ...more
Emily Scheinman
The way Mia's grandmother develops through the story - how her eyes go from distant gazes to become more focused on the life in front of her - was a quiet but touching part of the story for me. ...more
What a sweet story. A little girl helps her grandmother learn English, just as she learns more Spanish so they can communicate. A parrot named Mango helps the process along.
Danielle Mootz
Jul 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-books
We love books with Spanish learning opportunities and this adorable book delivered with a sweet story.
Jan 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great tale of grandmother and granddaughter bridging the language barrier with love and patience.
I would say rising second graders could read this.
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I'm Meg Medina, Newbery award-winning author of the New York Times bestselling novel Merci Suárez Changes Gears.

I am a Latina author of libros for kids of all ages. I'm about strong girls, tough circumstances, and the connecting power of culture. I am the author of several picture books, middle grade books, and young adult novels, including Burn Baby Burn which was long-listed for the 2016 Nation

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