The Beautiful Lady: Our Lady of Guadalupe

Overview

Every December, Grandma Lupita tells Rose the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe. As they make paper flowers to put around her statue, Grandma begins: Long ago, on a cold December morning near what is now Mexico City, a man named Juan Diego put on his cloak and started down the road to church. On his way, Juan Diego sees a beautiful Lady at the top of a hill. She tells Juan Diego to go to the Bishop and ask him to build a special church for her. But the Bishop doesn't believe that Juan Diego has seen the ...

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Overview

Every December, Grandma Lupita tells Rose the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe. As they make paper flowers to put around her statue, Grandma begins: Long ago, on a cold December morning near what is now Mexico City, a man named Juan Diego put on his cloak and started down the road to church. On his way, Juan Diego sees a beautiful Lady at the top of a hill. She tells Juan Diego to go to the Bishop and ask him to build a special church for her. But the Bishop doesn't believe that Juan Diego has seen the Lady; he asks for a sign. Again the Lady sends Juan Diego, and again the Bishop asks for a sign. Until finally, she provides one: her shining image on Juan Diego's cloak for everyone to see. 

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Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Mora retells the story of Our Lady of Guadalupe. On a cold day in December, Rose and her friend Terry are visiting Rose's Grandma Lupita. After teaching Terry how to make paper flowers, the older woman begins telling them the story of the Lady of Guadalupe. The author keeps the tale simple enough for the book's intended early-elementary audience, as she relates how the poor Juan Diego first met the Lady on Tepeyac Hill, outside of what is now Mexico City. Juan Diego follows the Lady's request to go to the bishop and "ask him to build a special church for her on the hilltop." The bishop requests a sign, which the Lady eventually provides to Juan Diego in the form of roses and her image on his tilma (cloak). The story returns to the present day, and Grandma Lupita and the girls share rose cookies in her kitchen. Although framing the famous Mexican story within a modern-day setting may appeal to some readers, doing so also removes some of the tale's potency and leaves the text riddled with quotation marks. While vividly colored, the artwork by Johnson and Fancher often falls flat in the frame story, though placing the illustrations of the tale-within-the-tale within colorful borders is a nice feature. An average version of an extraordinary tale. (author's note) (Picture book/religion. 5-8)
School Library Journal
Gr 1–3—The author pays loving tribute to Mexico's Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, the most noted appearance of the Virgin Mary in the Americas, framing this story with a family's sharing traditions surrounding the celebration of her feast day, December 12. Grandma Lupita and her granddaughters create yellow, orange, and red paper roses and bake rose cookies to commemorate Our Lady's appearance to a poor man in the hills near Mexico City in 1531. A jewel-toned palette presents both expressive faces and the warmth of Mexican mountain landscapes. The story moves with ease from full-page illustrations of a contemporary family to the narrated story; patterned frames surround scenes from the historical tale while a folk-art motif dances across the page under the text. An author's note explains the history and tradition of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. A respectful balance of religion, history, and faith that begins with a child's questioning voice.—Mary Elam, Learning Media Services, Plano ISD, TX
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375868382
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 12/11/2012
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 249,887
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD630L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.60 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Award-winning PAT MORA's books include Tomás and the Library Lady and Doña Flor. She is an honorary member of the ALA, the highest honor the association bestows on non-librarian members.

Husband and wife team STEVE JOHNSON and LOU FANCHER have illustrated The Boy on Fairfield Street by Kathleen Krull, My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss, and New York's Bravest by Mary Pope Osborne, among others.  

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