Today’s Perfect Picture Book Friday pick is Arturo and the Bienvendio Feast. Arturo and his grandmother, Abue Rosa, return in this sequel to Arturo and the Navidad Birds. This is the perfect month to share a story about family and food. Every November families gather to give thanks for one another and share a Thanksgiving feast. Children will enjoy reading about Arturo and his family’s feast.
Themes/Topics: family, Latin American culture culture & food
Brief Synopsis: Arturo and Abue Rosa plan a special feast to welcome Michael, the fiancé of his aunt, Tía Inés. Their menu includes Pupusas, curtido, fried plantains, chocolate almond cake and more. While cooking Abue Rosa gets a headache so she takes a nap. But Arturo can’t wake her up and the guests are coming. What can he do? Arturo saves the day of course!
Opening pages: “Arturo stole a glance at his grandmother as he popped a handful of shredded cheese in his mouth.”
“Arturo echó una miradita a su abuela mientras se metía un bocado de queso rallad a la boca.”
“Leave some for the pupusas.” Abue Rosa threw the dough into the mixing bowl – thwack! – and massaged the masa into a smooth ball.”
“Deja un poco para las pupuses.” Abue Rosa ventó la masa al tazón – jzas! – masajendo la masa hata formar una bala suave.”
Why I like this book: The tender relationship between Arturo and his grandmother continues in this sequel. Reading about Arturo and Abue Rosa reminded me of the special bond shared between my son and my mother when they cooked Louisiana Creole Filé Gumbo together. Food and family are important to culture and celebrations. Anne Broyles brings both together in this sweet story told in English and Spanish. In addition to recipes for Curtido (slaw) and Pupusas (stuffed, fried corn cakes), there is an author’s note. Also included is a glossary with phonetic pronunciations and definitions for the Spanish words used in the story.
The illustrations are warm, and earthy colors represent Latin American culture.
Lu and Bean Read podcast 11/16/2017 interview with author Anne Broyles.
Mr. Donn’s Free lessons, games, presentations about Latin America.
Read other perfect picture book Friday reviews at author Susanna Hill’s blog.