Celebrate Puerto Rican Heritage Month

Author Visit & Book Discussion
Adriana Erin Rivera’s Paloma's Song for Puerto Rico: A Diary from 1898
November 16th at 4:30 pm
For 3rd – 5th Graders
Location: Galaxy Hall

Join Author, Adriana Erin Rivera for a book discussion for 3rd through 5th graders celebrating November as Puerto Rican Heritage Month! We will be reading Ms. Rivera's book, Paloma's Song for Puerto Rico: A Diary from 1898, speak with the author about her book, and enjoy snacks. The first eight to register will receive a free copy of the book. Please include your name, phone number and email when you register for this program. You can place a hold on the book  here.

School Library Journal writes about Paloma’s Song for Puerto Rico: A Diary from 1898, “A young Puerto Rican girl witnesses her island's transition from Spanish colony to U.S. territory in this richly detailed historical fiction novel. Twelve-year-old Paloma's diary entries express the hopes and fears of her entire homeland as war for control of Puerto Rico reaches her coffee farm home. Will the new U.S. regime preserve native culture and offer self-rule? The answer comes in the novel's final chapter, set 27 years ahead in 1925, as adult Paloma—now living in New York City—reflects on the fate of her family and the impact of U.S. rule. The Puerto Rico of Paloma's youth is vividly realized, from the mango trees and chickens she tends to the colorful bustle of the marketplace where her family sells eggs and plantains… VERDICT Ideal as a classroom read-aloud and recommended for libraries seeking to expand their collection on Latinx history and culture.”

A Baker’s Dozen of Great Titles to Celebrate Puerto Rican Heritage Month!:

Across the Bay by Carlos Aponte
(Preschool to 2nd Grade)
Library Catalog

Carlitos lives in a happy home with his mother, his abuela, and Coco the cat. Life in his hometown is cozy as can be, but the call of the capital city pulls Carlitos across the bay in search of his father.

Marcus Vega Doesn’t Speak Spanish by Pablo Cartaya
(Grades 4-6)
Library Catalog

After a fight at school leaves Marcus facing suspension, Marcus's mother takes him and his younger brother, who has Down syndrome, to Puerto Rico to visit relatives they do not remember or have never met, and while there Marcus starts searching for his father, who left their family ten years ago and is somewhere on the island.

Rafi and Rosi Series by Lulu Delacre
(Kindergarten to 2nd Grade)
Library Catalog

Two tree frogs, mischievous Rafi and his younger sister Rosi enjoy many adventures in Puerto Rico. Books include Rafi and Rosi: Pirates!, Rafi and Rosi: Carnival! and Rafi and Rosi: Music!

A Girl Named Rosita: The Story of Legendary Puerto Rican Performer Rita Moreno by Anika Denise
(Kindergarten to 3rd Grade)
Library Catalog

Details the life of Puerto Rican actress, dancer, and singer Rita Moreno, from her girlhood journey to the United States to her rise as a timeless superstar.

Planting Stories: The Life of Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré by Anika Aldamuy Denise & Paola Escobar
Sembrando historias: Pura Belpré bibliotecaria y narradora de cuentos by Anika Aldamuy Denise & Paola Escobar
Library Catalog

This inspiring biography tells the story of New York City's first Puerto Rican librarian, a woman who championed bilingual literature.When she came to America in 1921, Pura Belpré carried the cuentos folklóricos of her Puerto Rican homeland. Finding a new home at the New York Public Library as a bilingual assistant, she turned her popular retellings into libros and spread story seeds across the land. Today, these seeds have grown into a lush landscape.

Esta biografía tan inspiradora nos cuenta la historia de la primera bibliotecaria puertorriqueña, una mujer que defendió la literatura bilingüe. Cuando ella llegó a América en 1921, Pura Belpré trajo consigo los cuentos folklóricos de su patria. Al encontrar un nuevo hogar en la Biblioteca Pública de Nueva York como asistente bilingüe, Pura convirtió sus populares programas de cuentos en libros, esparciendo así semillas de cuentos en todo el país. Hoy en día, esas semillas se han convertido en un paisaje muy frondoso.

The Coquies Still Sing by Karina Nicole González
Los coquies aún cantan by Karina Nicole González
(Kindergarten to 2nd Grade)
Library Catalog

A hurricane nearly destroys everything Elena knows, but over time, Elena and her community begin to rebuild, planting seeds of hope along the way.

Un huracán destruye prácticamente todo lo que Elena conoce, pero con el tiempo, Elena y su comunidad comienzan a reconstruir, plantando semillas de esperanza por el camino.

Mother of Sharks by Melissa Cristina Marquez
(Preschool to 2nd Grade)
Library Catalog

Forbes 30 Under 30 Honoree and globally renowned shark scientist Melissa Cristina Marquez teams up with award-winning illustrator Devin Elle Kurtz to create an informative, powerful picture book. With lyrical writing and gorgeous art, this moving story explores Melissa's personal journey from inquisitive ocean-loving child in Puerto Rico to becoming the Mother of Sharks

The Tree of Hope: The Miraculous Rescue of Puerto Rico’s Beloved Banyan by Anna Orenstein-Cardona
(Kindergarten to 3rd Grade)
Library Catalog

This lushly illustrated and evocatively written picture book tells the story of the majestic jagüey blanco, one of the most beloved trees in the city of Old San Juan. Puerto Rican author Anna Orenstein-Cardona weaves an epic tale based on the true story of this bearded watchdog of the island, how the tree was impacted by Hurricane Maria, and how a group of people rallied together to save it. With gorgeous illustrations by Juan Manuel Moreno, this picture book serves as an account of the devastating impact of Hurricane Maria and the strength of the people who continue to rebuild to this day.

Coquí in the City by Nomar Perez
De aqui como el coquí by Nomar perez
(Preschool to 2nd Grade)
Library Catalog

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.

Un libro ilustrado muy tierno basado en las experiencias del autor-ilustrador, sobre un niño que se muda de la isla de Puerto Rico a los EE.UU continental y se da cuenta de que la ciudad de Nueva York puede tener más en común con San Juan que lo que él pensó originalmente.

Beauty Woke by NoNieqa Ramos & Paola Escobar
(Kindergarten to 3rd Grade)
Library Catalog

Beauty–who is of Taino Indian, African, and Boricua heritage–was taught to be strong and proud, but hatred toward people who look like her bruises her heart until her community opens her eyes to the truth.

Hair Story by NoNieqa Ramos & Keisha Morris
(Kindergarten to Grade 3)
Library Catalog

With rhythmic, rhyming verse, this picture book follows two girls–one non-Black Puerto Rican, one Black–as they discover the stories their hair can tell. Preciosa has hair that won't stay straight, won't be confined. Rudine's hair resists rollers, flat irons, and rules. Together, the girls play hair salon! They take inspiration from their moms, their neighbors, their ancestors, and cultural icons. They discover that their hair holds roots of the past and threads of the future.

Parrots Over Puerto Rico by Susan L. Roth & Cindy Trumbore
Cotorras Sobre Puerto Rico by Susan L.Roth & Cindy Trumbore
(Grades 1-4)
Library Catalog

Puerto Rican parrots, once abundant, came perilously close to extinction in the 1960s due to centuries of foreign exploration and occupation, development, and habitat destruction. In this compelling book, Roth and Trumbore recount the efforts of the scientists of the Puerto Rican Parrot Recovery Program to save the parrots and ensure their future. Woven into the parrots' story is a brief history of Puerto Rico itself, from before the first human settlers to the present day.

Las cotorras de Puerto Rico, que antes eran abundantes en la isla, llegaron a estar muy cerca de la extinción en los años de 1960s debido a los siglos de exploración y ocupación extranjera, el desarrollo comercial y la destrucción de su hábitat. En este libro convincente, Roth y Trumbore cuentan los esfuerzos de los científicos del Proyecto de Recuperación de la Cotorra de Puerto Rico para salvar las cotorras y asegurar su futuro. Entrelazado con la historia de las cotorras hay un historia breve de Puerto Rico, desde los primeros habitantes humanos hasta la actualidad.

Roberto Clemente: Pride of the Pittsburgh Pirates by Jonah Winter & Raúl Colón
Library Catalog

On an island called Puerto Rico, there lived a little boy who wanted only to play baseball. Although he had no money, Roberto Clemente practiced and practiced until–eventually–he made it to the Major Leagues. As a right-fielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates, he fought tough opponents–and even tougher racism–but with his unreal catches and swift feet, he earned his nickname, “The Great One.” He led the Pirates to two World Series, hit three-thousand hits, and was the first Latino to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. But it wasn't just baseball that made Clemente legendary–he was also a humanitarian dedicated to improving the lives of others.

Categories: Library News.

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