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Day of the Dead Reprint Edition
Contributor(s): Johnston, Tony, Winter, Jeanette (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0152024468     ISBN-13: 9780152024468
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
    OUR PRICE: $9.59  
Product Type: Paperback - Other Formats
Published: September 2000
Annotation: This written tribute to the Mexican holiday Day of the Dead is filled with cultural icons, rituals, and customs that bring the holiday to life for the reader. Full-color illustrations.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
All Souls' Day; Mexico; Fiction.
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Fiction | People & Places | United States
- Juvenile Fiction | Love & Romance
Dewey: [E]
LCCN: BL 00017705
Lexile Measure: 540
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 2-3, Age 7-8
Book type: Juvenile Fiction
Physical Information: 6.75" H x 4.25" W x 0.25" (0.20 lbs)
Accelerated Reader Info
Quiz #: 55606
Reading Level: 2.6   Interest Level: Lower Grades   Point Value: 0.5
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.
Publisher Description:
Above a small town in Mexico, the sun rises like a great marigold, and one family begins preparations for an annual celebration," El dia de los muertos, "the Day of the Dead. Soon they will go out into the night, join their neighbors, and walk to the graveyard to welcome the spirits of their loved ones home again. Framed by decorative borders and peppered with Spanish words, "Day of the Dead" is a glorious introduction to a fascinating celebration. A note at the end of the book provides factual information about the holiday.

Contributor Bio(s):
Tony Johnston lives in Southern California.

Jeanette Winter lives in south Texas and New York City.

Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 1998)
A festive jacket and bright endpapers set the tone for this look at the Mexican holiday. Simple but effectively composed paintings, rich with color, are framed in black and bordered by an image from the illustrations. The brief text, sprinkled with Spanish and less spirited than the art, tells of a family's preparations for and their participation in ceremonies honoring [cf2]los abuelos[cf1]. An author's note provides more explanation. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 1997 September #1)
Readers take a ringside seat during the preparation for and observance of Mexico's three-day celebration of the dead in this dazzling little volume. Winter's (Josefina) dust jacket (resembling a Mexican paper cutout) integrates a silhouetted skull and marigold motif against a festive backdrop of purple, a visual theme echoed in the endpapers and beyond. Inside its covers, in text that copiously interlaces Spanish words and phrases, Johnston (The Magic Maguey; The Wagon) tracks one family in the days preceding the annual the mixing, the baking, the fruit and flower picking and the children can scarcely contain their excitement, or their hunger (" `¿Ni una miga?' they ask. `No,' mamá says. `Not one crumb.' "). When the big night finally arrives, the whole village forms a processional, carrying food for the feast and bearing marigold bouquets ("dropping a path of petals for the spirits to find their way"). The empanadas, tamales and pan de muertos (bread of the dead) are laid out on the graves of abuelos (grandparents) and ancestors, and the celebration begins. Winter frames gem-like images of these scenes within thick black borders accented with bright images drawn from the text red chiles, orange marigold petals, pink and green decorated calaveras de azúcar (sugar skulls). Together Johnston and Winter bring this mystical day of the dead vividly to life, and may even provide an uplifting way for children to think about their own dearly departed. All ages. (Sept.) Copyright 1998 Publishers Weekly Reviews

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 1997 September)
This graphically arresting treatment of the Mexican celebration introduces its traditions in story form. As two children notice all the food being cooked, the flowers being gathered, and the special packages bought at the bakery, they long to taste, smell, and investigate. The repeated refrains, "Wait" and "Espérense," add to readers' and listeners' curiosity. The acrylic illustrations are bold and stylized, with wide black borders decorated with varying designs. Although the book's small size makes it difficult to share with a large group, it will work one-on-one and with small groups. It also provides a wonderful bridge to Diane Hoyt-Goldsmith's Day of the Dead (Holiday, 1995), which looks at the holiday in a Mexican-American context, or George Ancona's wonderful Pablo Remembers (Lothrop, 1993), a photo essay on El día de los muertos as experienced by a young Mexican boy and his family. Copyright 1998 School Library Journal Reviews