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Yum! mmmm! que rico! : Americas' sproutings

by Pat Mora


Syndetic Solutions - [Book Review for 9781584302711]

Book Review

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School Library Journal :

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PreS-Gr 3—This concept book serves as a delicious introduction to 14 types of food, all of which have their origins in the Americas. Snippets of information and a haiku poem accompany each one, ranging from blueberry and chili pepper through papaya, prickly pear, and vanilla. Using English and a smattering of Spanish words, Mora crafts a playful introduction to each one, as in "Pumpkin": "Under round luna,/scattered tumblings down the rows,/autumn's orange face." The sense of whimsy is further underscored in López's colorful acrylic on wood-panel illustrations. Artful compositions and brilliant complementary colors bear out the book's multicultural themes. The art conveys an infectious sense of fun, as smiling suns and moons beam down upon happy children and animals, along with a trumpet-wielding peanut-butter sandwich and a dancing pineapple. Teachers will find this a welcome addition to their social-studies units, but it should also win a broad general audience for its inventive, fun-filled approach to an ever-popular topic: food.—Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Syndetic Solutions - [Book Review for 1584302712]

Book Review

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BookList :

From BookList, December 1, 2007, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

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*Starred Review* This inventive stew of food haiku celebrates the indigenous foods of the Americas. Each of the 13 poems appears on a gloriously colorful double-page spread, accompanied by a sidebar that presents information about the origin of the food. From blueberries to prickly pears to corn, the acrylic-on-wood-panel illustrations burst with vivid colors and stylized Mexican flair. The poems capture the flavor of the item in a way children can easily understand-Chocolate: Fudge, cake, pie, cookies. / Brown magic melts on your tongue. / Happy, your eyes dance; Pineapple: A stiff, spiky hat / on thick prickly skin, inside / hide syrupy rings. The print of the text in the sidebars is too small, but otherwise this will provide lots and lots of lip-smacking fun that teachers can use to supplement social studies and language arts units; they can also share one poem at a time, between other subjects. An author's note, which addresses lingering scientific debate about the geographical origins of some of the featured foods, also includes a warm celebration of diversity: We do know that all these plants were grown and enjoyed . . . long before Christopher Columbus or any other Europeans had ever tasted such wonderful foods. The world's variety is amazing-and delicious. Cummins, Julie.

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