Many of my reads this month feature Latinx authors for September Latinx / Hispanic Heritage Month, Sept. 15-Oct.15, 2022.
I start with Mary Roach's non-fiction primer on Packing for Mars for Kids and then move on to the wonderful science-based Generation Mars series, by Douglas Meredith and illustrated by Luis Peres. Meredith is an Arizona author and at first my public library was very supportive, purchasing his two indie pubbed books. Then, writers take note, the library stopped purchasing from Ingram. I'll discuss it in a separate post from the author interview / book review, as I do not want to take away from this wonderful series! These are excellent, short high interest, high vocabulary / concept books meticulously researched about two girls' survival on a Mars colony.
I then move on to several fantasies by Latinx authors: The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez, which features a boy who can talk to animals; and Time Villains, which features a time traveling table that fetches its lunch and dinner guests from the past. Witchlings is a Hogwarts-esque magic school divided into houses and further into covens featuring a desperate hunt for a Nightbeast.
Contemporary fiction includes: Efren Divided, by Ernesto Cisneros, about a boy who loses both his parents to US immigration policy; Barefoot Dreams of Petra Luna, which is set in Mexico during the Revolution featuring a girl caught between the many sides of the conflict; and Fearless, about a girl's foray onto Broadway as an understudy who must lift a theater's curse (imagine if Nate were slightly younger and Latina).
And finally, my favorite read this month: Loteria, by Karla Arenas Valenti. I can't rave enough about this book! It features Life and Death playing a traditional game, Loteria (imagine Bingo), with a girl's life. All around her are moved like pawns on a chessboard to fulfill the will of the cards. This book broke so many MG tropes and did it so incredibly well, it's a true gem!
And I continue into November with a middle grade science-fiction tale of people in cryosleep until they reach a Goldilocks planet to colonize, The Last Cuentista, by Donna Barba Higuera. (The picture appears on next month's post.)
These were last year's September reads...