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Mama Provi and the Pot of Rice Hardcover – May 1, 1997

4.3 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 3. When her granddaughter Lucy is sick, Mama Provi makes a big pot of arroz con pollo for her and sets off on the journey from her first-floor apartment to Lucy's eighth-floor home in the same building. On each floor, Mama Provi trades a bit of her rice with a different neighbor, receiving a new type of food each time. By the time she finally reaches Lucy, the two have a tremendous and varied feast. Mama Provi makes each trade "en un dos por tres" ("something like 'lickety-split'"), a pleasant refrain repeated throughout. Most readers will figure out where the rather wordy story is going right away, so the final meal is rather anticlimactic. Though the action of trading foods is repeated several times, the language and conversations are different enough to avoid monotony. The watercolor illustrations also add interest, offering varied perspectives of hallways, stairs, and apartments. The soft colors used for the people's clothes and food stand out nicely from the tans and off-whites in the background, reinforcing the warmth of the building's community. The foods and neighbors are almost too neatly varied in a multicultural fashion, as Se?or Rivera offers black beans; Mrs. Johnson, an African American, trades collard greens; and Mrs. Woo gives tea. The book avoids preachiness, however, by focusing on the neighborliness rather than the individuals' backgrounds. The result is a thoughtful, gentle, and satisfying story.?Steven Engelfried, West Linn Public Library, OR
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Ages 5^-8. When her granddaughter, Lucy, comes down with the chicken pox, Mama Provi cooks a big pot of arroz con pollo, packs it in a giant shopping bag, and starts the journey from her first-floor apartment to Lucy's apartment on the eighth floor. On the second-floor landing, "a wondrous smell tickled her nose," prompting Mama Provi to barter a bowl of her chicken with rice for a chunk of Mrs. Landers' crusty bread. And so it continues: on every floor, Mama Provi dips into her pot and makes an exchange: a bit of Senor Rivera's frijoles negros, a generous portion of Mrs. Johnson's collard greens, a pot of Mrs. Woo's tea. Roth's decorative, boldy colored watercolors make intriguing use of perspective and nicely portray Mama Provi's multicultural world. A charming debut for the author, this is a wonderful celebration of food and culture, friends and family. Lauren Peterson
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 8 years
  • Lexile Measure: 900L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum; 1st edition (May 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689319320
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689319327
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 8.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,126,416 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on February 19, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This book nourishes the neighborly kindnesses of multicultural apartment tenents. Not only are Rob Roth's watercolors warm and inviting but the mention of the food made me wish I knew those people. Rosa-Casanova sprinkles Spanish words like, "en un dos por tres", which means "lickedy-split" makes me want to polish up my Spanish again. This book promotes acceptance in a subtle way and is very satisfying.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My kids loved this book when we took it out from the library--the story is entertaining and the colorful watercolor illustrations are well done. Unfortunately, this paperback edition we received from Amazon was very disappointing. The edition is a black-and-white reproduction on poor paper glued into a laminated color cover. This edition basically looks like a "Xeroxed" copy of the book, and none of the color illustrations in the interior of the book are in color. For a children's book where the illustrations are fundamental to enjoying the book, this is unacceptable. It is misleading that nowhere in the description of the book on the Amazon website was the edition described as a black-and-white reproduction, and that such a poor quality paperback could cost $15. It is possible that we received a defective copy of this edition with the color missing, but that would seem unlikely. In retrospect, we noticed that the online preview of the book shows the front and back covers but no representative pages from inside the book.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a chaming, multi-ethnic story that reflects experiences of generations of immigrants.
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By Nikki Renner on September 15, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great deal. This is a book I'm using in my K-2 vocabulary class. The students love it.
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