From Publishers Weekly
Through this affectionate and revealing portrait of a bilingual girl's weekend visits to her two sets of grandparents, Ada (Where the Flame Trees Bloom) and Savadier (A Bedtime Story) prove that straddling two worlds can be a blessing rather than a hardship. The left of each spread depicts the narrator spending Saturdays with her paternal grandparents, with whom she speaks English; on the right, she passes los domingos (Sundays) with her Mexican-American Abuelito and Abuelita and converses in Spanish. The situations in the two households share enough similarities that readers can extrapolate the meaning of the Spanish words in context. For instance, on one spread, the colors of the balloons her paternal grandparents give her also appear in the kite that her Abuelito makes for her. Each pairing makes for a loving comparison and contrast, enlivened by Savadier's graceful, warm-toned watercolor spot illustrations. At book's end, both sets of grandparents coordinate a cooperative gift for the girl's birthday. The balance tips slightly in Abuelito and Abuelita's favor, in terms of fun and exoticism (e.g., Grandpa and Grandma watch a video about the circus while the Mexican-American grandparents "take me to a real circus"). Youngsters, however, will come away with the idea that this girl is very lucky to have four such interesting people who love her. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-A little girl recounts the joy of her weekends, Saturdays spent with her Euro-American Grandma and Grandpa and Sundays (los domingos) with Abuelito and Abuelita, her Mexican-American grandparents. She does different things in each place and goes on different outings: off to the circus, to the pier, out floating balloons or flying kites. She hears different stories that reflect her grandparents' heritages. However, on her birthday, it is clear that both sets of relatives are united in their love of their granddaughter. Lively, childlike prose that integrates Spanish words flawlessly and understandably makes this a winner for storytimes. Savadier's watercolor cartoon illustrations are bright, clear, and stylistically reminiscent of Lillian Hoban's work. Paired with books like Carmen Santiago Nodar's Abuelita's Paradise (Albert Whitman, 1992), or even such old standbys as Helen Buckley's Grandfather and I (Lothrop, 1994), this book will make a strong statement about cultural diversity and the universality of love.
Ann Welton, Grant Elementary School, Tacoma, WA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.