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A Song of Frutas

2021

by Margarita Engle and Sara Palacios

"From Pura Belpré Award–winning author Margarita Engle comes a lively, rhythmic picture book about a little girl visiting her grandfather who is a pregonero—a singing street vendor in Cuba—and helping him sell his frutas. The little girl loves visiting her grandfather in Cuba and singing his special songs to sell all kinds of fruit: mango, limón, naranja, piña, and more! Even when they’re apart, grandfather and granddaughter can share rhymes between their countries like un abrazo—a hug—made of words carried on letters that soar across the distance like songbirds." -- publisher

Beautiful Life

A Thousand White Butterflies

2021

by Jessica Betancourt-Perez, Karen Lynn. Williams and Gina Maldonado

"As if being new to the United States wasn’t hard enough, Isabella’s first day of school is canceled due to snow! Isabella has recently arrived from Colombia with her mother and abuela. She misses Papa, who is still in South America. It’s her first day of school, her make-new-friends day, but when classes are canceled because of too much snow, Isabella misses warm, green, Colombia more than ever. Then Isabella meets Katie and finds out that making friends in the cold is easier than she thought!" -- publisher

Beautiful Life Cross Group

A Train Called Hope / Un tren llamado Esperanza

2021

by Mario Bencastro and Robert Casilla

"In this poignant bilingual picture book, a boy remembers his first present, "a little train crossing / the mountain of my pillow / over a valley on my bed." There's even a girl who looks like his sister waving happily from the window! Years later, after his parents have gone far away in search of work and a better future, the boy rides in a real train to join his family. This one is loaded with hundreds of children traveling alone, just like him. There are frightening strangers, others along the way who want to jump on and, scariest of all, a boy who almost falls off the roof because he can't stay awake any longer. When the train finally arrives at its destination, everyone jumps off and the boy begs "the moon to shine, / to light up the border" so he can cross and find his mother. This moving, poetic story by award-winning Salvadoran author Mario Bencastro touches on the difficult journey north many Central American children make in hopes of finding their parents and a better life." -- publisher

Beautiful Life

Alicia Alonso Dances On

2021

by Rose Viña and Gloria Félix

"As a young girl in Cuba, Alicia Alonso practiced ballet in tennis shoes. Within a few years, she was in New York City, with a promising ballet career. But her eyesight began to fail. When Alicia needed surgeries to save her vision, dancing was impossible, but she wouldn't give up her dream. She found the strength and determination to return to the stage and become a prima ballerina. This is the true story of a woman who overcame her challenges, mastered her art, and inspired others to dance and dream." -- publisher

Biography Cross Group

Anita and the Dragons

2021

by Hannah Carmona and Anna Cunha

"Anita used to watch the dragons from high above in her village, but now she must enter the belly of the beast. Will Anita be brave enough to take flight to new adventures? A beautifully tender story touching on the range of emotions immigrants may feel when leaving their home countries – excitement and sorrow, fear and courage. Anita watches the dragons high above her as she hops from one cement roof to another in her village in the Dominican Republic. But being the valiant princesa she is, she never lets them scare her. Will she be brave enough to enter the belly of the beast and take flight to new adventures?" -- publisher

Beautiful Life

Antonia

2021

by Dipacho

"Perfect for fans of Oliver Jeffers and Jon Klassen, this nearly wordless picture book tells a heartwarming and hopeful story of loss and new beginnings as a little girl and her dog, Antonia, journey with their family across a river to start a new life. Like so many people around the world facing difficult times, the little girl and her family in this eye-catching and emotionally satisfying picture book have had to leave their home. The girl has brought along her belongings and her friendly, curious dog, Antonia. While waiting for a boat to take them across a river, she plays with other children who’ve also brought pets—a duck and a bird. But on the other side of the river, Antonia goes missing in the brush. The girl is distraught, until a new friend releases his own pet bird from its cage in an extraordinary gesture of solidarity and freedom. With colorful, whimsical illustrations and an uplifting message of resilience, this US debut from a talented Colombian creator will leave readers with a full heart." -- publisher

Beautiful Life

Areli Is a Dreamer

2021

by Areli Morales and Luisa Uribe

"In the first picture book written by a DACA Dreamer, Areli Morales tells her own powerful and vibrant immigration story. When Areli was just a baby, her mama and papa moved from Mexico to New York with her brother, Alex, to make a better life for the family--and when she was in kindergarten, they sent for her, too. Everything in New York was different. Gone were the Saturdays at Abuela’s house, filled with cousins and sunshine. Instead, things were busy and fast and noisy. Areli’s limited English came out wrong, and schoolmates accused her of being illegal. But with time, America became her home. And she saw it as a land of opportunity, where millions of immigrants who came before her paved their own paths. She knew she would, too. This is a moving story--one that resonates with millions of immigrants who make up the fabric of our country--about one girl living in two worlds, a girl whose DACA application was eventually approved and who is now living her American dream. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is an immigration policy that has provided relief to thousands of undocumented children, referred to as “Dreamers,” who came to the United States as children and call this country home." -- publisher

Beautiful Life Biography

Coquí in the City

2021

by Nomar Perez

"A heartfelt picture book based on the author-illustrator’s own experiences, about a boy who moves to the U.S. mainland from Puerto Rico and realizes that New York City might have more in common with San Juan than he initially thought. Miguel’s pet frog, Coquí, is always with him: as he greets his neighbors in San Juan, buys quesitos from the panadería, and listens to his abuelo’s story about meeting baseball legend Roberto Clemente. Then Miguel learns that he and his parents are moving to the U.S. mainland, which means leaving his beloved grandparents, home in Puerto Rico, and even Coquí behind. Life in New York City is overwhelming, with unfamiliar buildings, foods, and people. But when he and Mamá go exploring, they find a few familiar sights that remind them of home, and Miguel realizes there might be a way to keep a little bit of Puerto Rico with him—including the love he has for Coquí—wherever he goes." -- publisher

Beautiful Life

I am Frida Kahlo

2021

by Brad Meltzer and Chris Eliopoulos

"The famous Mexican painter Frida Kahlo is the 23rd hero in the New York Times bestselling picture book biography series for ages 5 to 8. Includes a foil mirror! The free-spirited Frida Kahlo survived childhood polio and a terrible bus accident to become one of the most beloved artists in the world. Her subject was the thing she knew best: herself. On her canvases, she depicted her Mexican homeland, her pets, and even her pain. Today, she continues to be admired for the exquisite honesty of her work and for being unafraid to do things differently." -- publisher

Biography

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