Confetti Girl

Confetti Girl

4.5 107
by Diana Lopez
     
 

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Apolonia "Lina" Flores is a sock enthusiast, a volleyball player, a science lover, and a girl who's just looking for answers. Even though her house is crammed full of books (her dad's a bibliophile), she's having trouble figuring out some very big questions, like why her dad seems to care about books more than her, why her best friend's divorced mom is obsessed

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Overview

Apolonia "Lina" Flores is a sock enthusiast, a volleyball player, a science lover, and a girl who's just looking for answers. Even though her house is crammed full of books (her dad's a bibliophile), she's having trouble figuring out some very big questions, like why her dad seems to care about books more than her, why her best friend's divorced mom is obsessed with making cascarones (hollowed eggshells filled with colorful confetti), and, most of all, why her mom died last year. Like colors in cascarones, Lina's life is a rainbow of people, interests, and unexpected changes.

In her first novel for young readers, Diana López creates a clever and honest story about a young Latina girl navigating growing pains in her South Texan city.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Apolonia "Lina" Flores is a brave Latina girl trying to restore her life in Corpus Christi, Tex., after her mother's death. Her dad is a single-minded English teacher and bibliophile who has withdrawn to the point of disappearance since the tragedy ("Sometimes when I dream about him, I see a body, a neck, and a book where his face should be," Lina says). Despite her frustrations with her father, sixth-grader Lina is determined to create her own world of fun. "People who think socks are just for feet have no imagination," she says (she collects them and uses them for "coasters, bookmarks, wallets, and dusters"). Alongside Vanessa (her "best friend since forever"), Lina gains confidence by playing sports and relying on her own ingenuity (she dresses up as "red tide" one Halloween). The story is saturated with Spanish traditions, such as the making of "cascarones" (confetti-filled eggs), and the chapters begin with "dichos," truisms that help Lina feel connected to her mother. Employing lovely metaphors and realistic dialogue, adult author López (Sofia's Saints) delicately displays the power of optimism and innovation during difficult times. Ages 8-12. (June)

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Children's Literature - Renee Farrah
Lina knows what she likes. She likes volleyball, science, socks, and Luis. What she does not like is how her best friend, Vanessa, now spends more time with Carlos than with her, how her dad would rather read books than have dinner with her, and, most of all, she does not like that her mom died. As all of the characters in this novel try to accept the new changes in their lives, one thing brings them all together, cascarones. Usually only prepared at Easter, Ms. Cantu has been channeling her stress by making these hollowed out eggshells filled with confetti year round. As Lina and her father try to navigate their life using dichos, Spanish proverbs, they discover that their differences do not have to drive them apart, and they can stop walking on eggshells. This book is set in Texas, and there is a delicious Spanish flavor that spices up this book and adds a hint of culture. Included in the book is a list of all the dichos, as well as instructions on how to make your own cascarones. Reviewer: Renee Farrah
School Library Journal
Gr 4-8–Lina attends middle school in Corpus Cristi, TX, has a crush on classmate Luís, loves science and sports, and has a sock obsession as a result of her pants never being long enough for her tall body. Her best friend, Vanessa Cantu, lives across the street with her mother, who is still bitter about a divorce that happened a few years earlier. Lina’s mother died last year, and her father is still grieving but struggling to live up to his responsibilities. Dichos, Spanish sayings or proverbs, are translated at the top of every chapter. Spanish phrases are sprinkled throughout the text, reflecting Lina’s bilingual community. The budding romance, and typical middle school events such as detention, lunchroom disasters, and reports, keep things moving. Lina is essentially a sunny, happy child and her sadness and anger are more blips on the radar than real angst. A subplot about Luís’s stuttering seems extraneous. Quite typical in characters, plot, and style, this story is most notable for its casual introduction to Spanish language and culture, overtly accessible to all.–Carol A. Edwards, Denver Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
Apolonia "Lina" Flores loves science and mathematical riddles, playing volleyball and collecting extravagant, romantic and lonely socks. But after the sudden death of her mother, her world in Corpus Christi, Texas, makes no sense: Her kind but distant English-teacher father has filled the house with books, and her best friend, Vanessa, has problems of her own. Vanessa's parents have divorced and her mother spends her days making cascarones, a traditional Mexican good-luck craft made of eggshells and filled with confetti, which become the book's central metaphor. Lina's frustration grows as she discovers the vicissitudes of the first love and that happiness can be as fragile as an eggshell. An appealing coming-of-age novel set in a traditional Mexican-American town, in which Hispanic teachers, students and parents celebrate traditional American holidays such as Thanksgiving alongside such traditional Mexican observances as el D'a de los Muertos and a Quincea-era. Local idioms of Spanish proverbs-dichos-used as chapter headings enlighten both characters and readers. (glossary) (Fiction. 8-12)
Booklist
"López effectively portrays the Texas setting and the characters' Latino heritage....This debut novel puts at its center a likable girl facing realistic problems on her own terms."
San Antonio Express-News
"Although Confetti Girl takes on a serious subject matter, it's also about fun, a whole semester's worth, which includes confrontations with the school's most popular boy, a school festival, volleyball, friendship, boy craziness, a quinceañera and trips to the beach - and the counselor's office."
El Paso Times
"López weaves Lina's bilingual and bicultural upbringing into the narrative seamlessly, giving young Latina readers an added element to connect with."
Claire Epting
Like a cascaron, Lina's life is full of colorful people and events, and you will want to read about every single one of them in this witty, honest novel.
TIME for Kids , "Summer Splash" 2009
Grace Lin
"Like the colorful cascarones López writes about, Confetti Girl is bursting with heartwarming cheer."
René Saldaña
"A great set of characters and a fantastic story: the dichos, sayings or adages meant to shed some light on a situation, to teach a lesson, to encourage wisdom. If that's the case, then here's mine for this wonderful novel: Un libro sin abrir es una vida sin sabor (A book unread is a life unlived). So, live this book. Live its humor, its sadness, and ultimately its great joy."
Kid Reporter Claire Epting - TIME for Kids
"Like a cascaron, Lina's life is full of colorful people and events, and you will want to read about every single one of them in this witty, honest novel."
From the Publisher
"Employing lovely metaphors and realistic dialogue, adult author López (Sofia's Saints) delicately displays the power of optimism and innovation during difficult times."—Publishers Weekly"

An appealing coming-of-age novel...Local idioms of Spanish proverbs — dichos — used as chapter headings enlighten both characters and readers."—Kirkus Reviews"

López effectively portrays the Texas setting and the characters' Latino heritage....This debut novel puts at its center a likable girl facing realistic problems on her own terms."—Booklist"

Like the colorful cascarones López writes about, Confetti Girl is bursting with heartwarming cheer."—Grace Lin, author of The Year of the Dog"

A great set of characters and a fantastic story: the dichos, sayings or adages meant to shed some light on a situation, to teach a lesson, to encourage wisdom. If that's the case, then here's mine for this wonderful novel: Un libro sin abrir es una vida sin sabor (A book unread is a life unlived). So, live this book. Live its humor, its sadness, and ultimately its great joy."—René Saldaña, Jr., author of The Whole Sky Full of Stars, Finding Our Way, and The Jumping Tree"

Although Confetti Girl takes on a serious subject matter, it's also about fun, a whole semester's worth, which includes confrontations with the school's most popular boy, a school festival, volleyball, friendship, boy craziness, a quinceañera and trips to the beach - and the counselor's office."—San Antonio Express-News"

López weaves Lina's bilingual and bicultural upbringing into the narrative seamlessly, giving young Latina readers an added element to connect with."—El Paso Times"

Like a cascaron, Lina's life is full of colorful people and events, and you will want to read about every single one of them in this witty, honest novel."—Kid Reporter Claire Epting, TIME for Kids , "Summer Splash" 2009

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316029568
Publisher:
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
05/01/2010
Pages:
198
Sales rank:
268,752
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

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