La Llorona: The Crying Woman

La Llorona: The Crying Woman

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by Rudolfo Anaya, Amy Córdova
     
 

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La Llorona, the Crying Woman, is the legendary creature who haunts rivers, lakes, and lonely roads. Said to seek out children who disobey their parents, she has become a "boogeyman," terrorizing the imaginations of New Mexican children and inspiring them to behave. But there are other lessons her tragic history can demonstrate for children. In Rudolfo Anaya's

Overview

La Llorona, the Crying Woman, is the legendary creature who haunts rivers, lakes, and lonely roads. Said to seek out children who disobey their parents, she has become a "boogeyman," terrorizing the imaginations of New Mexican children and inspiring them to behave. But there are other lessons her tragic history can demonstrate for children. In Rudolfo Anaya's version Maya, a young woman in ancient Mexico, loses her children to Father Time's cunning. This tragic and informative story serves as an accessible message of mortality for children. La Llorona, deftly translated by Enrique Lamadrid, is familiar and newly informative, while Amy Córdova's rich illustrations illuminate the story. The legend as retold by Anaya, a man as integral to southwest tradition as La Llorona herself, is storytelling anchored in a very human experience. His book helps parents explain to children the reality of death and the loss of loved ones.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Mandy Cruz
On the very day that villagers in ancient Mexico celebrated the Festival of the Sun a baby girl was born. Maya was born with a sun shaped birthmark on her shoulder, the priest who blessed her told Maya's parents that she would never die. She grew to be a lovely young lady who was loved by all of the gods but detested by Father Time who would not tolerate immortality by Maya or her future offspring. In fear that Father time would take her future children Maya was hidden in the jungle by her parents. Growing lonelier by the day Maya wished for company, a wise owl overheard her and told her how to grow a baby in a clay pot. As long as Maya kept the clay pot safe, Maya's baby would be safe from Father Time. Eventually Maya grew more babies and guarded more pots and soon after her fifth baby, Father Time found Maya and her children. He tricked Maya into destroying the clay pots allowing him to run off with her children. Once she realized she had been tricked Maya was devastated. She was doomed to spend her immortality crying for her children. Hispanic children grew up being warned that la llorona, the crying woman, would steal them away if they were bad, wandered off or disobeyed. She was the boogeyman. The story is beautifully told, illustrated and translated; the legend of her wailing transforms believers from fearful children into sympathetic adults while introducing a new generation to legends told by our ancestors. Reviewer: Mandy Cruz
School Library Journal
Gr 3–5—This revised edition of Maya's Children: The Story of La Llorona (Univ. of New Mexico, 1997) is infused with new life, mainly due to Córdova's colorful illustrations. The story follows Maya, who was born with a birthmark on her shoulder that appears to be the sun. The chief priest sees it and knows that she will live forever. He also warns her parents that Señor Tiempo, or Father Time, will not like this and will try to find a way to end her gift of immortality. As Maya grows older and yearns for children, her wish comes true but her happiness is short-lived. Ultimately, Señor Tiempo tricks her, and her children disappear in a storm. Maya is condemned to roaming the land in search of them forever. While unnecessary, the final paragraph spells out a lesson for readers, but the rest of the text succeeds. The translation, which is side by side with the English text, is easy to understand. The illustrations will keep readers interested with the deep, earthy hues employed throughout. This child-friendly story is an excellent addition to the folklore that already exists concerning La Llorona and will no doubt create many new believers.—Roberto Zapata, San Antonio Public Library, TX

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780826344601
Publisher:
University of New Mexico Press
Publication date:
09/15/2011
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
599,155
Product dimensions:
8.60(w) x 10.10(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
8 - 11 Years

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La Llorona: The Crying Woman 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
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