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4.14  ·  Rating details ·  260 ratings  ·  72 reviews
Maximiliano Córdoba loves stories, especially the legend Buelo tells him about a mythical gatekeeper who can guide brave travelers, who are true of heart, on a journey into tomorrow.

If Max could see tomorrow, he would know if he'd make Santa Maria's celebrated fútbol team, and whether he'd ever meet his mother, who disappeared when he was a baby. He longs to know more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published March 3rd 2020 by Scholastic Press
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Average rating 4.14  · 
Rating details
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this one of the most powerful books i have ever read... wow just wow
Feb 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The gorgeous illustrations and storytelling give a fairy-tale feel to the narrative despite the spare prose. This is a quick read, but unpacks some truths for middle grade kids to consider. It is simple enough for young readers to grasp while still giving the opportunity for more mature discussions with older ones. There are some high stakes moments with a not quite happily ever after ending. I predict this one could be on the Newbery list for 2021.

Thank you to Scholastic Press and Edelweiss
Amber K.
Nov 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is going to stick with me for awhile...

Max is a young boy living with his father. His mother left a long time ago and he doesnt remember her or know her. He wants to meet her desperately. Then he discovers a family secret while snooping through his dads stuff. A secret about an underground network of guardians who lead people fleeing their country to safety. Through this secret he continues to uncover clues about his mother and his own past.

Sadly, this story of people fleeing their
Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was fortunate to receive an advanced reader copy at the California School Library Association conference. Thank you Pam Muñoz Ryan for bringing the copies! This will be a great choice for middle school students. Set in a fictional Central American country, 12-year-old Max is determined to discover the mystery of where his mother is and why she left when he was just a baby. During a courageous and dangerous trip helping a runaway young girl, what he learns is not what he expected.
Feb 09, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: newbery-author
I am a Pan Munoz Ryan fan. Esperanza Rising and Becoming Naomi Leon are wonderful stories, and I was so happy when her book Echo won a Newbery Honor award! So I was very excited when a copy of her soon-to-be-released book arrived on my doorstep!
The story is of a young boy named Maxilimiliano, or Max. He lives in a small village with his Papa and Buelo. He loves futbol and hopes to make the competitive team to follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. His family are stonemasons, and
I am grateful to have received this advanced copy from Scholastic Press

For anyone who does not believe the strength of eleven, almost twelve-year-olds, they have not met Maximiliano Feliciano Esteban Córdoba. It's summer and Max's dream of trying out for fútbol is dashed when his father won't let him join a local team so he can improve. Within the clash with his father, Max worries that he will lose a best friend who plans to join. Max will have to help his father and sometimes his grandfather
Ashley Sabatino
Mar 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
A little bit of a slower start than her other books, but ultimately a wonderful heartwarming story that will give readers hope for a kinder more beautiful tomorrow. Much needed during these wild times!
Sarah Sammis
Mañanaland by Pam Muñoz Ryan is a Latinx middle grade novel that walks a fine line between realistic fiction and fantasy. Maximiliano Córdoba has grown up on his abuelo's stories (or Buelo) as he calls him. From those stories his learned important family and local history lessons, ones he will come to rely on when he's called to stand in for his father.

The set up of Max's world and story reminds me of the first episode of Las Leyendas (2017), except that Max remains grounded in his world and the
Wendy Thomas
So much going for this book! Action, fantasy, family, culture and an insight into the refugee experience. Wrap all that up in simple, flowing prose and I couldn't put it down.
Oct 04, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: middle-years, 2019
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
DNF. Couldnt make myself care about the main characters. Its okay while Im reading it, but its hard to make myself pick it up again. I dont have anything great or anything terrible to say about it; I nothing it. And Im so disappointed- I loved Esperanza Rising. I guess its similar to Echo in that way. ...more
Alex  Baugh
Mar 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Eleven-year-old Maximiliano Cordoba loves playing fútbol, and hopes to someday play on the celebrated Santa Maria national team just like his Papá and his Abuelo did when they were young. And tryouts are only a few weeks away. But when Max is invited to join a fútbol clinic in another town, his father refuses to give him permission to go. Instead, Max is invited to help his father find needed stones for building a new bridge, and earning money to buy a new pair of coveted soccer shoes. ...more
Ms. Yingling
Dec 09, 2019 rated it liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Maximiliano Córdoba lives with his father and Buelo, since his mother left when he was young. His father is a stone mason who has been given permission to take stones from some ruins and construct bridges near the small village where they live. The father had also been a big soccer star, and Max wants desperately to go to a soccer camp run by the coach of the team he wishes to join, but his father is loathe to let him, especially since the coach is requiring a birth
Kate Waggoner
Nov 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019-read
I received an advance copy of Mañanaland from Scholastic through the #ScholasticInsider program. Pam Muñoz Ryan's newest book, Mañanaland, will be released All opinions are my own.

Max loves futból and stories. He especially loves the legends his Buelo tells him about a gatekeeper who guides those who are brave and true of heart on a journey into tomorrow. Max longs to see tomorrow to know if he'll make his city's futból team and to know if he'll ever meet his mother who disappeared when he was
Laura Gardner
Jan 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐/5 for Mananaland by #pammunozryan; thanks to @scholasticinc for sharing this book with @kidlitexchange -- it's out March 3!

Max has big questions about his past and future, but his Papa isn't comfortable with the questions and wants him to live in the present. In particular, Max has questions about his mother who lewft when he was little, but no one in his family will give him answers. When Max's eligibility for the village soccer team comes into question, his father must travel to the
Feb 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Mananaland is a beautiful, magical novel that takes its readers through the very real lives of refugees seeking a better life to the mythical, dreamlike state where those that search for happiness find it.

Told through the eyes of eleven-year-old Max we meet the Cordoba family. The youngest of three generations of Cordoba men, Max is eager to prove to his father and grandfather that he is old enough. He wants to play for the villages soccer team and explore the ruins of an old castle close to his
Kyra Johnson
Mar 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thank you for the gifted book, Scholastic Inc!

Maximiliano Feliciano Esteban Córdoba is an eleven-year-old boy living with his Papá in the fictional village of Santa Maria in the Américas. His mother left when he was a baby and since his father never speaks of her she is a mystery to him. Max grew up listening to stories his Buelo told him about guardians who led brave travelers that were true of heart on a journey into tomorrow. Max yearns to see tomorrow to find out if hell make the village
Susan The Book Dragon Campton
Welcome my Fellow Book Dragons to Saturdays Child. It has been awhile since we have had a Gem to behold here. Today we will be looking at a Gem that came into my possession not long ago. It came from a country in South America whose name was not familiar to me, probably not familiar to you either, but it does sound like a lovely place. The Gem is dark, it is cut in the shape of a falcon, a Peregrine Falcon, quite beautiful and mysterious. Her name is inscribed on the bottom, by the Gem maker. ...more
Katie Reilley
Mar 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to the author and Scholastic Press for sharing an early copy with #bookexpedition.

Maximiliano Córdoba is 12 year old boy who lives with his father and grandfather, stone masons who design and build the bridges of their village and those that surround them. He wants to know about his mother who left when he was just a baby, but his father isnt comfortable answering his questions completely. After snooping through his fathers things one night, Max discovers that the stories that his
Trisha Perry
Feb 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Max likes two things soccer and stories. His grandfather fills him full of stories and his father and grandfather were both acclaimed soccer players. But the one story Max wants to hear no one will talk to him about, his mother who left when he was a baby. But things start to change when Max is finally old enough to try out for the towns soccer team but needs a birth certificate, which he doesn't have. Max's dad leaves to get him one and Max and his grandfather are to keep the family bridge ...more
Mar 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a book that has a really timeless feel, and the location is also a little vague. I felt this was intentional, so that a reader could feel that it was anywhere and could happen to anyone. It was only after I read the Dear Reader, part of this ARC (thanks to the publisher and bookish friends in my ARC sharing group Book Portage for the copy) that I learned how intentional.

I have read a few books lately that I think our perfectly written for our times, and this is another one. "You will
Beth Mendelsohn
Feb 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: edelweiss-arc-s
I received this e-ARC from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Maxmiliano Córdoba, age 12, lives in the fictional town of Santa Maria in a fictional Latin American country with his father and grandfather. Max loves fútbol, and Buelos legends and stories. His mother left when Max was a baby and Max has lots of questions that his father wont answer. When Maxs father has to leave town, Max discovers a family secret of secret guides and forbidden travelers. Soon an opportunity for Max to
Dec 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Mañanaland is written by Newberry Award honoree, Pam Muñoz Ryan, author of Esperanza Rising and Echo. It is a story of empathy and coming of age. As the title may suggest, Mañanaland has deep cultural references of particular interest to the Latinx population; however, appropriate and enjoyable for any audience. It showcases empathy and the selfless giving of oneself for others. Max is a young soccer player in a small, remote village who has be raised by his father and grandfather. He is curious ...more
3.5/5 stars, rounded up.

I plan on re-reading Esperanza Rising this year, but was pleasantly surprised to find this book in my library. The premise sounded promising and is very relevant to the current political atmosphere. It's definitely a book I would want my children to read in order to understand what it means to be a refugee and how we, as a society, can help them.

That being said, the first part of this story really dragged. We really don't get to the meat of the story until the 60% mark.
Katrina Feraco
Nov 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
I absolutely adored this heartfelt story about being brave, even when its hard; looking forward to good things even when bad things happen; and making peace with never knowing the answers to even your biggest questions.

Max, a young Latin-American boy raised by his father and grandfather who has never known his mother, is determined to make his town's soccer team, and when he's disallowed from going to soccer camp, begins to learn his father's business: stone masonry. It turns out, though, that
Mary Sanchez
This story parallels current and historical universal stories that deal with helping people flee bad situations for the promised land--however that looks.

The setting is a mystical Central or South American village, Santa Maria, where Maximiliano (Max) Cordoba, age eleven lives with his father, who thinks he's still too young to venture out, even if it's to a soccer clinic forty-five minutes away from the village. Buelo is Max's grandfather who tells mythical legends about guardians and
Cromaine Library
Mar 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
It took a chapter or two to draw me in, but I enjoyed this surprisingly lovely tale which feels like fantasy, but equal parts realistic fiction. Max is worried he will not be prepared for fútbol tryouts when his friends are invited to training camp and his father does not allow him to go. Staying home over the summer to apprentice with his bridge building father is definitely not what Max had in mind, but a family mystery leads him on an unexpected path and eye-opening adventure.

This is a
Karlie Schaefer
Feb 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
"Solo mañana sabe. Only the place we know as tomorrow holds the answers."

Mañanaland is another wonderful middle grade book by Pam Muñoz Ryan. You will absolutely love the main character and narrator, Max.  He plays soccer and lives with his father and grandfather in a small village in an imaginary country in South or Central America. There's a great fairy tale aspect added to the serious concepts of the journey Max undertakes to find out more about his mother. This has the result of making the
Feb 17, 2020 rated it liked it
Max lives with his father, grandfather, and a lot of protection and secrecy. When Max accidentally uncovers some of the family secrets, he sets off on a quest to find more answers, and maybe find Mananaland.

I enjoyed Pam Munoz Ryan's latest novel, Mananaland and its themes of bravery, belonging, honour, and service to others. However, I did find it to be slightly simple and predictable too. Overall, I recommend Mananaland. (Target audience students in grades 3-6.)

3.5/5 stars

NOTE: I received an
Mar 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
I typically dont read Middle Grade books, but when I went to the NTTBF a few months back, I listened to this author speak and loved what she had to say. I remember loving Esperanza Rising so this book intrigued me.

This book is a heroic story about seeking asylum, disguised as a fantasy book. Its beautiful and super relevant to our world today. Max and his family are guardians. What they do, essentially, is help people escape their country and move somewhere safe.

This has the potential of
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Pam Muñoz Ryan is the author of the New York Times Best Seller, ECHO, a 2016 Newbery Honor Book, and winner of the Kirkus Prize. She has written over forty books for young peoplepicture books, early readers, and middle grade and young adult novels. She the author recipient of the NEA's Human and Civil Rights Award, the Virginia Hamilton Literary Award, the Willa Cather Award, the Pura Belpré ...more

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