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Multicultural Literature
Pablo Remembers
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The Thief Lord
This Same Sky
Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge
The Eleventh Hour: Curious Mystery
Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry
M.C. Higgins, the Great
Goin' Someplace Special
Locomotion
Too Many Tamales
Pablo Remembers
My Name is Maria Isabel
Pablo's Tree
The Great Ball Game
Buffalo Woman
Morning Girl
The Mud Pony: A Traditional Skidi Pawnee Tale
Jingle Dancer
The Name Jar
Tree of Cranes
Good Luck Gold: And Other Poems
The Magic Paintbrush
Habibi
Ella Enchanted
Silent Lotus
Real Heroes

Ancona, George.  1995.  Pablo remembers: The Fiesta of the Day
     of the Dead.  New York: Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Books. 
     ISBN: 0688112501.

 

Starting on October 31st and extending for three days, the festival of Dia de Los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead, is celebrated in Mexico.  This beautifully photographed, 42 page book, follows Pablo Montano Ruiz and his family as they prepare for and celebrate this holiday.

          On October 31st, All Hallows Eve, the family shops in the big city market of Oaxaca and begins preparations for the festival.  Bakers bake pan de muertos (bread of the dead), calaveras de dulce (candy skulls) are made, and decorations and flowers begin to be displayed.  Photos of the open air market and the wonderful foods and products are depicted along with the Spanish/English terminology.

          All Saints Day follows on November 1st.  To honor all relatives who have died, an alter is prepared.  Candles, food, and photographs are displayed.  Finally, fireworks fill the air signaling that the spirits of the dead are leaving and it is time to feast!  It is a day for visiting, playing and celebration.

          November 2nd, All Souls Day, is a time for church and reflection.  Families visit and decorate tombs of their deceased loved ones. 

The author's notes, at the end of the story, explain the traditions and history of this holiday beginning with Aztec beliefs about death and the Spanish Catholic traditions brought to the people of Mexico by the Conquistadors.  A glossary of Spanish words at the end adds another note of authenticity to this informative book. 

Mr. Ancona has composed his photographs in such a way that they enhance the text and inform and educate the reader about the foods, customs, and traditions surrounding this Mexican holiday.  There is a lot of white space on the bordered page so the text stands out and is easily read without being overpowering on the page.

Actual photographs of a real Mexican family while they prepare and celebrate this holiday adds meaning and authenticity to this intriguing book.  The reader can note some of the similarities between this holiday and the American Halloween traditions.  The third person narration, with the focus on Pablo, adds to the realistic setting and allows the reader to step right in to this families' home.  This book is a wonderful introduction for anyone unfamiliar with this holiday and its traditions.