Garanimals Blog

May 28th, 2013 at 5:00 am

5 Books for Older Kids Written by Latinas

I can recommend a lot of children’s books in Spanish because I have two kids who love books and reading in general. But they’re only 3 and 6, so my list of recommendations tends to be limited to those age groups.

Even so, I often get asked if I can make suggestions for books that would appeal to kids who are a little bit older, say in the 8-12 age range. That’s why I decided to do some research and came up with a list of five books for older kids written by Latina authors. These women are all prolific and award-winning writers. Some do children’s books only, while others started out as adult fiction authors.

The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros — The poignant story of Esperanza Cordero, a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago. This is a classic that all children — and adults — should read.

Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan — A story of immigration and assimilation as told through the eyes of a young girl who is forced to leave her comfortable life in Mexico to go work in the California fields right before the Great Depression.

Dancing Home by Alma Flor Ada — A beautiful story about two young girls who just want to fit in. One is the child of immigrants who wants to prove she’s 100% American and her cousin who is a recent immigrant and is having a ton of difficulties adapting.

How Tía Lola Came to (Visit) Stay by Julia Alvarez — This book is part of series written by the talented Julia Alvarez, whom I only knew as an adult fiction writer. This books tells the story of Miguel, who moves to Vermont after his parents’ divorce and how his Aunt Lola moves in with them from the Dominican Republic to help out. But Lola is no ordinary aunt…

City of the Beasts by Isabel Allende — The first one in a coming of age trilogy featuring Alexander Cold in an adventure in the Amazon. The perfect book for those kids who love adventure and mystery.

Roxana A. Soto is the co-founder of SpanglishBaby, the go-to site for parents raising bilingual and bicultural children. She’s the co-author of her first book, based on her blog. Roxana is also a staff writer for MamásLatinas.


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