Over the years when doing the work of building a collection of books for your school community to enjoy, you find yourself eagerly anticipating meetings with your favorite book vendors because they bring you books like this one. It is because my rep, Linda Startup (Perma-Bound) knew that I would love La Princesa and the Pea, that she brought it to our meeting for me to preview. I’d been looking for books with bilingual text because we have students who are learning Spanish. We have Spanish dictionaries that my students borrow but our collection has very few Spanish-English storybooks. Susan Middleton Elya does a great job integrating the two languages to bring the story of La Princesa and the Pea to life. The glossary of Spanish vocabulary will be particularly helpful to my Spanish language learners.
As is the case with picture books, the cover art is oftentimes what compels my student readers (and myself) to choose a book from our library’s shelves. When we read picture books together, we celebrate the work of both the author and the illustrator. We make it a point to pause to admire the art. Juana Martinez-Neal creates art that is ever appealing to the eye and leaves the reader with the warm and fuzzies. My heart loves books that give me the warm and fuzzies. Juana Martinez-Neal is an award-winning illustrator. She won the Pura Belpre Award for La Princesa and the Pea (2018). At the book’s end, the reader will find “A note from the illustrator” which goes into detail about the inspiration behind the art. It was interesting to learn that the illustrations were inspired by the indigenous people of Peru.
I recommend La Princessa and the Pea for all readers in K-5 to enjoy with their families. It is also one of the books that I will share with our Spanish Club teacher to read with her Spanish language learners. I would also suggest reading Susan Middleton Elya’s La Madre Goose: Nursery Rhymes for Los Niños.
Susan Middleton Elya | http://www.susanelya.com/about.htm
Juana Martinez-Neal | http://juanamartinezneal.com/
G.P. Putnam’s Sons
An Imprint of the Penguin Group
Find La Princesa and the Pea at your local indie bookstore: