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Posted March 5, 2010
Bilingual books are treasures - such an easy way to learn, so much fun, and a bringing together of cultures. Now, when that bilingual book also offers a moral it's tops! An apt description of GRACIAS THANKS.
Bold, colorful illustrations by graphic artist John Parra reflect his Hispanic heritage and capture not only the eye but the feeling of the narrative. Parra's pictures set the stage for simply put ideas, related very much as a child would as he or she thinks of all the things that merit appreciation.
For instance, "For the sun that wakes me up so I don't sleep for years and years and grow a long white beard. Thanks." Is that not the way a child might express this idea?
Or, "For my family, who clapped and clapped even when I tripped on the stage in the school play. Thanks." Kids can certainly relate to that.
Most of the observations are lighthearted, such as appreciation for a chocolate sauce called "warm mud" or an uncle's guitar that causes the dogs to howl. Yet the message is very clear - the world is a wonderful place and there is much for which we can be thankful and should express gratitude.
In a closing note Pat Mora reminds young readers, "Listing what I'm thankful for always makes me happy." This is a very happy book and highly recommended.
- Gail Cooke
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