|Between us and Abuela : a family story from the border
Author: Perkins, Mitali
When Maria, Juan, and their mother go to the border between California and Mexico to visit their grandmother at Christmas, Maria must devise a way to get Juan's gift over the fence.
|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 2.90
Points: .5 Quiz: 505454
Kirkus Reviews (-) (09/01/19)
School Library Journal (+) (10/01/19)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/10/19)
The Hornbook (00/11/19)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 08/01/2019 This touching contemporary story sensitively focuses on the U.S.–Mexican border and Mexico's cultural traditions in a heartwarming, informative, and hopeful way. Maria, Juan, and their mother are getting ready to visit Abuela on La Posada Sin Frontera, a celebratory day on which families on either side of the border are permitted to visit at the fence. In the warmth of anticipation, Maria and Juan make presents for Abuela, whom they haven't seen for five years, but in their excitement, they forget that they can't exchange anything through the fence. Perkins gently voices some of the challenges families can experience when they are separated by a border: physical limitations, time limits, and surveillance exacerbate the already difficult distance between loved ones. Maria’s inventive solution to that distance will make readers cheer, and Palacios’ warm illustrations in saturated colors make the scenes vibrant with feeling and quietly fold in informative visual details about the border and the family’s cultural traditions. Pair this honest yet optimistic story with Yuyi Morales’ Dreamers (2018). - Copyright 2019 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 10/01/2019 PreS-Gr 2—A story of family strength and unity overcoming fences along the Mexican/United States border. Las Posadas (Spanish for inns) is a celebration in Mexico and some Latin American countries that takes place over the nine days before Christmas. The holiday commemorates the search for shelter by Mary and Joseph on the eve of Jesus's birth. On one of those nine days, La Posada Sin Fronteras takes place on the Mexican/United States border between San Diego and Tijuana. Friends and families gather on both sides of the forbidding double fence waiting to catch a glimpse of each other and hopefully exchange some words. In this fictional account, the author makes the heartbreaking event accessible to young children. Two children and their mother prepare to go to the celebration. They haven't seen their grandmother in five years, and the children have made presents for her: Maria has knit a scarf, and little Juan has made a cardboard drawing. Unfortunately, when the time comes, the children are unable to give Abuela her presents. The spaces in the fence are too small, and, besides, it's forbidden to pass anything through the fence. Maria solves the problem by tying the drawing up with her knitting yarn and flying it over the fence like a kite, all with the guards' permission. VERDICT Another poignant piece to add to the current national discussion about the border. A must for any collection.—Lucia Acosta, Children's Literature Specialist, Princeton, NJ - Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.