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Grandma Francisca Remembers

Grandma Francisca Remembers

by Ann Kim Morris, Peter Linenthal (Photographer), Ann Morris, Peter Linethal (Illustrator)

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This warm story invites readers to learn more about the Hispanic-American culture as conveyed by eight-year-old Angelica and her grandma Francisca and the traditions they share. Angelica and Francisca's relationship is central to this story. Through their interactions, Angelica learns about her family's history, such as how and when Francisca decided to move from New Mexico to San Francisco. Angelica's knowledge of her cultural heritage also grows. She is learning to speak Spanish under her grandma's tutelage, learning to cook traditional foods such as tortillas and learning how to make the kinds of toys, such as sock dolls, that Francisca played with as a child. With a straightforward narrative, simple text, and engaging photographs, readers are drawn into the women's world. The overall value of inter-generational connections is made abundantly clear. Readers are encouraged to explore their own heritage and are offered suggestions for finding out more about their family's traditions. This book is the latest in the series, "What Was It Like, Grandma?" 2002, The Millbrook Press,
— Michele Coulombe
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-Clear, color photographs, headline-type captions over the text, and an engaging intergenerational relationship mark this book. Angelica's grandmother, Francisca, lives in the apartment next door to hers. This provides lots of opportunities for the two to be together. They go for walks, practice speaking Spanish, look at old family photos, sew, and cook. (Instructions for making a sock doll and for cooking calabacitas are included.) One spread shows Grandma Francisca and Angelica pointing to their small home shrine to the Virgin Mary. While many Hispanics are Roman Catholics, the author's statement that the Virgin "is very important to the Hispanic people" is rather broad. Despite this, the book provides an interesting look into one of America's many ethnic/cultural groups.-Ruth Semrau, Upshur County Public Library, Gilmer, TX Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Engaging color photographs of Angelica and her grandmother, who lives right next door in a San Francisco housing project, accompany the simple text that highlights the contemporary life of a Hispanic family. Some older sepia-tone family photographs also appear to document Francisca's earlier life in New Mexico. With parents born in the US and grandparents born in Spain, Francisca does not appear to have Mexican roots, but because of her New Mexican roots, many of the foods mentioned in the text are Mexican, such as burritos and tortillas. A recipe is given for calabacitas, a vegetable stew including tomatoes, zucchini, and corn that has variants in several countries. Each two-page spread has a simple sentence in very large type that young children may be able to read themselves, followed by several paragraphs in good-sized, though smaller type that provide additional details. Angelica's parents are not mentioned much, but the emphasis is on the grandmother-grandchild relationship. The celebration of Three King's Day (Epiphany) is described as one Hispanic holiday, but its context within the larger Christmas season is not specified, nor is the date given. This is one in a series that the prolific Morris (Families, 2000, etc.) has written about grandmothers from different ethnic groups and the format includes a recipe, a craft (here a rather generic sock doll is featured), and some instructions for finding out about family history. Simple pictures by Linenthal (who has also taken the fine photographs) accompany the recipe and the craft and show a family tree at the end, but these painted illustrations appear out of place within the photo-essay format. Teachers, grandparents, and parentswill enjoy sharing this with children of all cultures and then moving on to their own family memories. (Nonfiction. 5-8)

Product Details

Lerner Publishing Group
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.30(w) x 10.80(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
10 Years

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