Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Multicultural Children's Book Day 2015

 This is the fifth book in the Zapato Power series, and it is just as awesome as the first, Freddy Ramos Takes Off, that won the 2010 CYBILS Literary Award.  In this book Freddy and friends get sent home from school early because of a odd snow storm in March.  It snows so much they also get the next day off as well.  But when the heat breaks in one of the buildings in the Starwood Park apartment complex and the residents have to stay at the school Mr. Vaslov the Manager and maker of Freddy's Zapato Power shoes asks for Freddy's help, what they don't count on is a purse snatcher. 
You find all sorts of nationalities and circumstances at the Starwood Park Apartments.  Freddy and his mom are Hispanic and it is now just the two of them.  His dad was a soldier, a hero, and Freddy misses him a lot which leads you to believe he is gone.  Then there is Freddy's friend Maria and her little brother who loves guacamole, Gio.  Then there is Erika, she loves purple bubblegum and lives with her abuela (grandmother), that is a relationship in the making.  But most of the people of the Starwood Park Apartments are not rich, some are ok but some really have to watch their money so when the rent money is stolen it is a huge issue.
I really loved this book with all the differences of people and socioeconomical circumstances blending together was great, not that a child reading the book would  get that nuance all they would see is that this kid Freddy has these awesome cool shoes that let him do these really cool things to help his friends.  What kids doesn't think that each new pair of sneakers makes them run faster and jump higher?  But Freddy's really did, and because of this he was able to help do all sorts of things and all his friends had more fun and less stress because of it.  But it is a really fun exciting action packed book that will also make you very hungry for guacamole. :)
5 Stars

Twitter https://twitter.com/MCChildsBookDay  #ReadYourWorld

Our mission is to not only raise awareness for the kid’s books that celebrate diversity, but to get more of these of books into classrooms and libraries.
Mission: Despite census data that shows 37% of the US population consists of people of color, only 10% of children’s books published have diversity content. Using the Multicultural Children’s Book Day, Mia and Valarie are on a mission to change all of that. Their mission is to not only raise awareness for the kid’s books that celebrate diversity, but to get more of these types of books into classrooms and libraries. Another goal of this exciting event is create a compilation of books and favorite reads that will provide not only a new reading list for the winter, but also a way to expose brilliant books to families, teachers, and libraries.

“MCCBD team hopes to spread the word and raise awareness about the importance of diversity in children’s literature. Our young readers need to see themselves within the pages of a book and experience other cultures, languages, traditions and religions within the pages of a book. We encourage readers, parents, teachers, caregivers and librarians to follow along the fun book reviews, author visits, event details, a multicultural children’s book linky and via our hashtag (#ReadYourWorld) on Twitter and other social media.”
NOTE: The full name of this event is Multicultural Children’s Book Day and our official hashtag is #ReadYourWorld. The co-creators of this unique event are Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom and Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book/Audrey Press. You can find a bio for Mia and Valarie here.
We’re also partnering with First Book to offer a Virtual Book Drive that will help donate multicultural children’s books through their channels during the week of the event. We want to help get diversity books into the hands of kids who most need it and now we have a way to do it! The Virtual Book Drive is LIVE and can be found HERE.

MCCBD is collaborating with Children’s Book Council to highlight wonderful diversity books and authors on an ongoing basis all year.

MCCBD’s  2015 Sponsors include Platinum Sponsors: Wisdom Tales Press, Daybreak Press Global Bookshop, Gold Sponsors:  Satya House,  MulticulturalKids.com,   Author Stephen Hodges and the Magic Poof, Silver Sponsors: Junior Library GuildCapstone Publishing, Lee and Low Books,  The Omnibus Publishing. Bronze Sponsors:Double Dutch Dolls, Bliss Group Books, Snuggle with Picture Books Publishing,  Rainbow Books,   Author FeliciaCapers,   Chronicle Books   Muslim Writers Publishing ,East West Discovery Press.

We have NINE amazing Co-Host.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Black Dove White Raven YA

If only Elizabeth Wein had been writing these wonderful historical fiction books when I was younger maybe I would have liked history a whole lot more and done so much better at it in school.  Elizabeth Wein not only makes history so much more interesting but she also brings women and their role to the forefront.  In Black Dove White Raven it is women as aviators, and not just any ole women but a Ethiopian woman and her son along with a American woman and her daughter.  But it also brings in the fact of the first woman, who happened to be African American to get her international pilots license and everything she had to do to get it, in France!  Black Dove White Raven is a story of two children raised as brother and sister, one Ethiopian, one American with a French airman father in a time when the French and Ethiopia are going to war.
This book is so awesome, I can not say enough about it.  The characters are so real and believable, your cheer for them when something good happens and you cry with them when things go wrong.  At times I lost myself in the book and felt like I was in the cockpit of the Romeo with them, helping, or at other times giving Teo or Em a pep talk when it was needed, kind of like being their third sibling.  We keep saying we need diverse books, well this one fits in many diverse categories.  it is one powerfully strong book and Elizabeth Wein doesn't ever back down from some of the more touchy and sensitive parts of war but portrays them well, and also truthfully and fairly, so I would hope we never forget and repeat these atrocities inflicted in our past.
This is a great book and I hope everyone else enjoys it just as much as I did.

5 Stars