Old Letivia and the Mountain of Sorrows

Overview

At the entrance of the rain forest, on the island of Borinquen, lived Old Letivia. She shared her bohio with her friend and companion, a whistling turtle named Cervantes, and the child Simon. The townspeople were suspicious of Letivia and kept their distance--until the day an evil Wild Wind began to devastate the town, and only Letivia knew the secrets to conquer such a foe. Full color.

To end the devastation of a small Puerto Rican town, Old Letivia and her friends ...

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Overview

At the entrance of the rain forest, on the island of Borinquen, lived Old Letivia. She shared her bohio with her friend and companion, a whistling turtle named Cervantes, and the child Simon. The townspeople were suspicious of Letivia and kept their distance--until the day an evil Wild Wind began to devastate the town, and only Letivia knew the secrets to conquer such a foe. Full color.

To end the devastation of a small Puerto Rican town, Old Letivia and her friends use her magic to conquer the evil forces of the Mountain of Sorrows.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Judy Katsh
Old Letivia, the local witch woman, helps the people of the town solve their problems, but she doesn't have their respect-until the time comes when there's a problem that seems too big even for Letivia. That she finally does solve the problem, though it's at great personal sacrifice, is a tribute more to her creativity and problem solving skills than to her magical ones. This is an original folk tale with rich language and lush illustrations that effectively evokes its authentic Puerto Rican setting.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3Old Letivia, a healer, and her whistling turtle Cervantes rescue a mute, miniature baby in the rain forest as they are gathering wild herbs and plants for teas and potions. Simon, the baby, flourishes under their care, and by the time he is 10, he is the "size of an average coffee pot" and communicates through his own sign language. Viewed with suspicion by the rest of the community, the three form a loving family. However, when a fierce wind threatens to destroy the village, the mayor turns to Old Letivia and her powers, and the threesome is changed forever. Laced liberally with Spanish phrases and elements from folklore, the text deftly conveys the Puerto Rican setting and the fantastic events. Unlike a folktale, however, the author is sometimes compelled to explain and/or justify the acts of the characters (e.g., "I must prove to the townspeople that I can solve this problem, and become important"). These explanations and the unexpected juxtaposition of contemporary, mechanical images (e.g., roller coaster) within this natural (and supernatural) realm are disconcerting. Richly detailed, ornate, glistening paintings are finely executed and aptly reflect the tone of the story, but have little child appeal. The phosphorescent tones and exaggerated figures sometimes overwhelm the smaller illustrations. This unique and sophisticated book may find an audience among rain forest aficionados, but general appeal is limited.Starr LaTronica, Four County Library System, Vestal, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780670844197
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/12/1996
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.67 (w) x 10.86 (h) x 0.39 (d)

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