How Tia Lola Saved the Summer [NOOK Book]

Overview

Miguel Guzman isn't exactly looking forward to the summer now that his mother has agreed to let the Sword family—a father, his three daughters, and their dog—live with them while they decide whether or not to move to Vermont. Little does Miguel know his aunt has something up her sleeve that just may make this the best summer ever. With her usual flair for creativity and fun, Tía Lola decides to start a summer camp for Miguel, his little sister, and the three Sword girls, complete with magical swords, nighttime ...
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How Tia Lola Saved the Summer

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Overview

Miguel Guzman isn't exactly looking forward to the summer now that his mother has agreed to let the Sword family—a father, his three daughters, and their dog—live with them while they decide whether or not to move to Vermont. Little does Miguel know his aunt has something up her sleeve that just may make this the best summer ever. With her usual flair for creativity and fun, Tía Lola decides to start a summer camp for Miguel, his little sister, and the three Sword girls, complete with magical swords, nighttime treasure hunts, campfires, barbecues, and an end-of-summer surprise!

The warm and funny third book in the Tía Lola Stories is sure to delight young readers and leave them looking forward to their own summer fun!

From the Hardcover edition.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 3–6—Fifth grade was a trial for Miguel, but summer holds the promise of carefree days and baseball. However, when he learns that his mother's friend, Victor, and his three children—all girls—are coming to stay for a week, he is sure that his entire vacation will be ruined. And to top it all off, he sustains an injury that threatens to bench him during the big game. But Tía Lola comes to the rescue, employing her wisdom, charm, and creativity to ensure a fun and memorable summer for everyone. With a playful sprinkling of Spanish phrases, this third installment takes readers on another delightful adventure with this alluring character. The third-person narrative is brimming with heartwarming fun and includes captivating splashes of magical realism. Within the subplots, Alvarez deftly touches on the feelings of children affected by divorce and the intricacies of blended families. Fans of the earlier "Tía Lola" books will not want to miss this one, but it can certainly stand on its own.—Debbie Lewis, Alachua County Library District, FL
School Library Journal
Gr 3–6—Fifth grade was a trial for Miguel, but summer holds the promise of carefree days and baseball. However, when he learns that his mother's friend, Victor, and his three children—all girls—are coming to stay for a week, he is sure that his entire vacation will be ruined. And to top it all off, he sustains an injury that threatens to bench him during the big game. But Tía Lola comes to the rescue, employing her wisdom, charm, and creativity to ensure a fun and memorable summer for everyone. With a playful sprinkling of Spanish phrases, this third installment takes readers on another delightful adventure with this alluring character. The third-person narrative is brimming with heartwarming fun and includes captivating splashes of magical realism. Within the subplots, Alvarez deftly touches on the feelings of children affected by divorce and the intricacies of blended families. Fans of the earlier "Tía Lola" books will not want to miss this one, but it can certainly stand on its own.—Debbie Lewis, Alachua County Library District, FL
From the Publisher
“Tía Lola is that special aunt who knows how to add a touch of fun to everything!” —TimeforKids.com

 “Replete with adventure and humor. . . . Returning readers will rejoice in reconnecting with the effervescent Tía Lola and the rest of the gang, while even readers new to the tales will want to read more about Vermont's favorite Dominican aunt.” —Kirkus Reviews

Children's Literature - Leigh Geiger
This is the third in a wholesome series featuring Tia Lola, a creative and caring woman from the Dominican Republic. In this volume, children from two divorced families and their now single parents come to visit Tia Lola at the same time. Tia Lola welcomes them all and decides to turn the visit into a family "camp." As the story unfolds, we learn that each child and adult faces his/her own unresolved anxieties. From the youngest, 5-year old Cari, who is scared of bugs and other critters including people, to Mami who is afraid of making another marriage commitment, each camper faces and overcomes their fears in one short week. Alvarez is careful to include a mix of boys and girls, including one girl who is better at baseball than the boys, so the story will have some appeal for both sexes. Each camper, regardless of age, is given a symbolic toy sword to help them "conquer" their demons. This lends an almost magical air to the story which will appeal to readers used to mild themes and limited action. Others may be disappointed, however, by the third person narrative and lack of focus on a specific character. As Alvarez weaves together the struggles of six very different people into one short week of camp, there is little opportunity for the reader to identify with any of them. This could be used as an effective "read aloud" story for younger children. Occasional Spanish phrases are included, but they are clearly understood within the story context. Although part of a series, this book is easily understood on its own. Reviewer: Leigh Geiger, Ph.D.
Kirkus Reviews

Alvarez returns with another Tía Lola story, replete with adventure and humor.

Revisiting this charming Latino family a couple of months afterHow Tía Lola Learned to Teach(2010), readers find 11-year-old Miguel Guzman's aunt creating a magical summer camp for the Fourth of July week, complete with campfires and a nighttime treasure hunt. Víctor Espada is back in Vermont to visit, bringing his three daughters and his dog to stay at the farm. With romance blooming between Víctor and Miguel's divorced mom, Tía Lola tries to keep the peace between the five children. Meanwhile, outnumbered by the four girls and sidelined from playing baseball by an ankle injury, Miguel is beset by a plethora of worries, while his 9-year-old sister Juanita struggles to feel special among the Espada girls. Each of the children (and a couple of the adults) overcomes a challenge, thanks to Tía Lola's empathy and wisdom. The author subtly continues thematic elements of acceptance and community from the previous novels and blends Spanish words and phrases into the story, which will appeal to Latino and non-Latino readers alike.

Returning readers will rejoice in reconnecting with the effervescent Tía Lola and the rest of the gang, while even readers new to the tales will want to read more about Vermont's favorite Dominican aunt.(Fiction. 8-12)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375897665
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 5/10/2011
  • Series: Tia Lola Stories
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 783,165
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Julia  Alvarez
JULIA ALVAREZ is the author of two other beloved stories about Tía Lola, How Tía Lola Came to (Visit) Stay and How Tía Lola Learned to Teach, in addition to several critically acclaimed books for children and adults. She is a writer-in-residence at Middlebury College in Vermont.

From the Hardcover edition.

Biography

Julia Alvarez was born in New York City during her Dominican parents' "first and failed" stay in the United States. While she was still an infant, the family returned to the Dominican Republic -- where her father, a vehement opponent of the Trujillo dictatorship, resumed his activities with the resistance. In 1960, in fear for their safety, the Alvarezes fled the country, settling once more in New York.

Alvarez has often said that the immigrant experience was the crucible that turned her into a writer. Her struggle with the nuances of the English language made her deeply conscious of the power of words, and exposure to books and reading sharpened both her imagination and her storytelling skills. She graduated summa cum laude from Middlebury College in 1971, received her M.F.A. from Syracuse University, and spent the next two decades in the education field, traveling around the country with the poetry-in-the-schools program and teaching English and Creative Writing to elementary, high school, and college students.

Alvarez's verse began to appear in literary magazines and anthologies, and in 1984, she published her first poetry collection, Homecoming. She had less success marketing her novel -- a semiautobiographical story that traced the painful assimilation of a Dominican family over a period of more than 30 eventful years. A series of 15 interconnected stories that unfold in reverse chronological order, How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents addresses, head-on, the obstacles and challenges immigrants face in adapting to life in a new country.

It took some time for "ethnic" literature to gain enough of a foothold in the literary establishment for Alvarez's agent, a tireless champion of minority authors, to find a publisher. But when the novel was released in 1991, it received strongly positive reviews. And so, at the tender age of 41, Alvarez became a star. Three years later, she proved herself more than a "one-hit wonder," when her second novel, In the Time of Butterflies was nominated for the prestigious National Book Critics Circle Award. Since then, she has made her name as a writer of remarkable versatility, juggling novels, poetry, children's books, and nonfiction with equal grace and aplomb. She lives in Vermont, where she serves as a writer in residence at her alma mater, Middlebury College. In addition, she and her husband run a coffee farm in the Dominican Republic that hosts a school to teach the local farmers and their families how to read and write.

Good To Know

From 1975 until 1978, Alvarez served as Poet-in-the-Schools in Kentucky, Delaware, and North Carolina.

She has held positions as a professor of creative writing and English at Phillips Andover Academy in Massachusetts (1979-81), the University of Vermont (1981-83), and the University of Illinois (1985-88).

In 1984, Alvarez was the Jenny McKean Moore Visiting Writer at George Washington University. Currently, she is a professor of English at Middlebury College.

She and her husband run a coffee farm, Alta Gracia, in the Dominican Republic.

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    1. Hometown:
      Middlebury, Vermont
    1. Date of Birth:
      March 27, 1950
    2. Place of Birth:
      New York, New York
    1. Education:
      B.A., Middlebury College, 1971; M.F.A., Syracuse University, 1975

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