Rating: (1-5 5 is a starred review) 4
Genre: Picture book
What did you like about the book? This book, originally written in Spanish, shows how a young girl relies on an imaginary lion to protect her from her dangerous neighborhood, her scary walk to pick up her little brother and her long wait alone for her mother to come back from working at the factory. It paints a picture of a child living in working poverty, a world many inner city children face who are being raised by a single mother who must work to provide. The text is sparse, but powerful as the little girl invites the lion to share her world. I especially liked how this lifestyle is addressed in a children’s book so that it can open discussions on this topic for young children in similar circumstances.
Anything you didn’t like about it? I liked everything about the book.
To Whom Would You Recommend this book? Children ages 4-7 will be able to understand the little girl’s circumstances and her need to feel safe.
Who should buy this book? Libraries with children’s rooms. Kindergarten classes should read this book so facilitate discussions about this topic. Guidance counselors who do lessons in classrooms should also read this book.
Where would you shelve it ? Picture books
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? yes
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Sandra Pacheco, ESL teacher, Washington, D.C.
Date of review: Feb. 4, 2017