It’s Hispanic Heritage Month, the only heritage month that is not contiguous with a calendar month! (It runs from September 15-October 15, because September 15 is the anniversary of independence for Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua, and Mexico, Chile, and Belize also have independence days following September 15). That means it’s a great time to talk about favorite books featuring Hispanic/Latino characters!
Let’s see, picture books. I grew up on Tomie DePaula, so it’s no surprise that Adelita, his Mexican Cinderella, shows up on my list. And of our Latino books, I’m rather partial to Say Hola to Spanish, Under the Lemon Moon, and The Birthday Swap.
We’re curious—well, we’re always curious about what you’re reading, but this time we’re asking. What are the last five books you’ve read? Include the one you’re reading right now or not, it’s your call.
Last month, Sonya Chung had a post at The Millions on breaking up with books: quitting a book mid-read.
Now, I’m a big fan of Nancy Pearl’s Rule of 50: if you’re under fifty years of age, read the first fifty pages of a book and, if you’re not enjoying it, stop; if you’re over fifty years of age, subtract your age from 100, read that many pages of the book, and, if you’re not enjoying it, stop. I apply this rule often—there is just not enough time, and I am blessed to live a life filled with far more free books than I can possibly read. However, some books I’ve really tried to keep reading, hoping that if I just keep slogging through it I’ll love it.
These tend to be books that were recommended by people who are important to me, whose opinions I respect, and who know me well. With those recommendations behind them, they’re books I should really love, right?
Well, this is exciting! Oprah’s Book Club just released its 2010 Kids’ Reading List, full of books recommended by the American Library Association—and our very own Tofu Quilt makes an appearance!
It’s poetry month! What better time to share our favorite poetry?
Mine skews towards narrative poetry, and especially toward works written before the development of the novel:
Beowulf — particularly the Seamus Heaney translation, which combines beautiful words and flowing language with the exciting, bloody story.