|Total eclipse of Nestor Lopez|
Author: Cuevas, Adrianna
A twelve-year-old Cuban American boy must use his secret ability to save the inhabitants of his new town when it is threatened by a tule vieja, a witch that transforms into animals.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.70
Points: 7.0 Quiz: 508742
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 4.50
Points: 11.0 Quiz: 78029
Kirkus Reviews (05/01/20)
School Library Journal (05/01/20)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 04/15/2020 Twelve-year-old Nestor has a secret: he can talk to animals. As he starts sixth grade at his sixth school—in his new residence of New Haven, Texas—he battles angst, anxiety, and bullying. He also battles a power-hungry tule vieja (witch) who is responsible for the disappearance of local animals. When the townsfolk accuse Nestor’s abuela of being involved with the missing creatures, he must overcome a suspicious teacher, his father’s absence, and middle-school trivia contests in order to uncover the truth and ensure that the witch doesn’t rise to power. Readers will devour this fast-paced adventure as they root for Nestor and his ragtag bunch of friends and animal allies. The characters here—creatures and classmates alike—are quick-witted, sardonic, and hilarious, providing fresh voices that will linger in the reader’s mind long past the final page. In a unique take on South and Central American folklore, Cuevas brings to life an earthly type of twisted magic that transcends spells and transfiguration, extending into the feelings of belonging and finding a true home. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.
Booklist - 04/15/2020 - Copyright 2020 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 05/01/2020 Gr 4–7—With a dad in the military, Nestor has moving down to a science: pack his bedroom in under five minutes, keep his head down at the new school, and make sure people don't learn he can talk to animals. For Nestor, each stop is nothing more than a countdown until he moves again. But this move is different. Nestor and his mother have come to New Haven, TX, to live with his Cuban abuela while his father is deployed to Afghanistan. Nestor has another new experience when he inadvertently makes two friends, Maria Carmen and Talib, who soon come to Nestor's aid. Animals have been disappearing throughout New Haven. Forest creatures tell Nestor that it is the work of a tule vieja, a witch who can absorb characteristics of an animal by biting it during a solar eclipse. But the people of New Haven begin whispering that Nestor's abuela is responsible. With an eclipse approaching in days, Nestor, his friends, and an unlikely ally head into the woods to confront the tule vieja and rescue the town. Cuevas crafts a riveting story based on folktales from Panama and Costa Rica. Spanish words and Latin American customs are integrated throughout. Despite rising tensions in the town which result in overt hostility against his family, Nestor overcomes years of self-imposed isolation to learn that being a friend means allowing people to help you. Additionally, he and his friends are forced to probe beneath the surface of the class bully, who is pulled into their quest. Magical folklore provides the foundation for the plot, but themes of home, family, and friendship are the core of the book, with a heaping dose of creepiness to make it morefun. VERDICT Hand this unique story to fans of "Rick Riordan Presents" and students looking for scary books.—Nancy Nadig, Penn Manor School District, Lancaster, PA - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.