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"Frederick Douglas taught that literacy is the path from slavery to freedom. There are many kinds of slavery and many ... More


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SOAP, SOAP, SOAP / JABON, JABON, JABON

Author: Elizabeth O Dulemba

Illustrator: Elizabeth O Dulemba

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Publisher: Raven Tree Press,

Material: hard cover

Summary: Hugo's mother needs him to run an errand for her at the store. She gives him some dinero (money) and asks him to buy soap. Hugo took the scenic route and was so into the adventure that he kept forgetting what he was to buy ... despite landing (repeatedly) in the mud. Would he remember by the time he got to the store? This is a bilingual picture book that adds a twist to the classic Appalachian Jack tale.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, playtime reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read togethrer: 4 to 8; read yourself: 7 to 9

Interest Level: 4 to 9

Reading Level: 2.5

Age of Child: Read with and by an 8-year-old girl.

Young Reader Reaction: With every page, we heard "Oh, no! Mama, look at Hugo!" She loved tracing Hugo's journey along the dotted line on the pages. She wanted to read the book herself, but got frustrated with the Spanish words. Still, she kept reading, because she wanted to know what happened at the end.

Adult Reader Reaction: This is an adorable book. I don't know whether it is the realism of the images or the colors, but the illustrations are truly fabulous. I loved the illustration of Hugo sitting in the muddy ditch and the frog smiling at him, front feet folded. Although it took some work to read the Spanish words, it did not deter us from the book. It is a good opportunity for her to see how the words she says in school look on a page.

Pros: Humor, classic story telling, and great illustrations make this an enjoyable book to read any time of day!

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Buy! This is a book that young children will love to giggle with and explore. The bilingual text (and the glossary at the back) are wonderful ways to enrich the story.

If You Liked This Book, Try: PACO AND THE GIANT CHILE PLANT / PACO Y PLANTA DE CHILE GIGANTE   BEAUTIFUL MOON / BELLA LUNA   NACHO AND LOLITA

Educational Themes: For the preschool and early elementary audience, this is mostly a story to be enjoyed. That said, you could talk about responsibility, staying on task, and safety (not in text, but through image). With an older audience, you can contrast/compare this with other folklore to talk about the tradition of storytelling.

Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.

Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book, fables and folklore, Spanish, bilingual

Date(s) Reviewed: February 2010

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