Day Of The Dead

Talk about a high degree of difficulty for a children's book! 

*Deftly explains a holiday that most kids in this country don't know and most parents would rather avoid discussing due to its complicated subject matter 
*Doesn't force feed you the Espanol; instead Tony Johnston picks and chooses her spots
*I found it helpful that the author's note summarized the whole chain of events on a conceptual level whereas the story itself presents it in a series of snapshots

*Eight pages of adults telling the kids to wait before eating was entirely too many for my taste   
*I could have done without the ghosts of the grandparents despite their relevance 
*Maybe there's some tradition behind baking chokeable surprises inside of food; if so, it seems like a bad one

Everyone in our house likes this book, despite the fact that none of us have any direct link to the Mexican holiday.  It's educational, well-drawn (by Jeanette Winter), teaches us to honor those that have passed, and tickles kids' minds in a way that most other books in your collection do not.  That said, I always have trouble with exposing toddlers to mature subjects like skeletons, graves, and ghosts.  The way I see it, life wouldn't be life without exceptions, so I'm gonna make one here.  Borrow this book before each Halloween... 

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jazmin q said...

I love the book, hope I can get my own copy. Would love my daughter to read it when she can. I'm just wondering why Pan de Muerto doesn't look like the real one and why the kids found a sKeleton inside?? The author got confused, the kind of skeleton comes in Rosca the Reyes ;)

jazmin q said...

...i meant : comes inside of Rosca de Reyes (january 6th celebration)