Hispanic Heritage Month Book Recommendations
Hispanic Heritage Month is a nationwide celebration that runs from September 15 to October 15. Originally a week-long celebration, President Ronald Reagan enacted a law in 1988 to extend the celebration to 30 days. During this time, many Latin American countries celebrate their independence, such as Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Chile.
Hispanic refers to a person who is from, or a descendant of someone who is from, a Spanish-speaking country. Latino/a or Latinx refers to a person who is from, or a descendant of someone who is from, a country in Latin America. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are 56.6 million Hispanics / Latinos in the United States with Arlington’s Hispanic population numbering 60,817 or 18.27 percent. We invite you to celebrate all month long with our virtual programs, learn more here.
Our librarians have curated a booklist for all ages that highlight Hispanic and Latin American culture and heritage.
Colores De La Vida = Mexican Folk Art Colors in English And Spanish by Cynthia Weill
Ceramic animal figurines, fashioned by Mexican artists, demonstrate different colors, which are identified in both English and Spanish.
Digging for Words: José Alberto Gutiérrez and the Library He Built Angela Burke Kunkel
In Bogotá, Columbia, young José eagerly anticipates Saturday, when he can visit the library started by José Alberto Gutiérrez, a garbage collector, and take a book home to enjoy all week. Includes note about Gutiérrez's life and Bogotá.
Selena: Queen of Tejano Music by Silvia Lopez
In picture-book format, examines the life and career of Selena Quintanilla, the singer whose success in Tejano music and crossover into mainstream American music opened the door for other Latinx entertainers.
A semi-biographical look at the early life of the famous Mexican artist, this picture book takes special interest in Frida Kahlo’s beloved pets and other animals that inspired her art. In a unique storytelling format, Kahlo’s life and personality are portrayed through her animals with added biographical details and facts about indigenous Mexico. Vibrant illustrations that reflect Frida’s style help to highlight her imaginative work.
La Princesa and the Pea by Susan Middleton Elya
A rhyming twist on a classic fairy tale in which a queen places a pea under a young lady's mattress to see if she is truly a princess. Incorporates Spanish words and includes a glossary.
Lucía the Luchadora by Cynthia Leonor Garza
Lucia zips through the playground in her cape just like the boys, but when they tell her 'girls can't be superheroes,' suddenly she doesn't feel so mighty. That's when her beloved abuela reveals a dazzling secret: Lucia comes from a family of luchadoras, the bold and valiant women of the Mexican lucha libre tradition.
Lucky Broken Girl by Ruth Behar
Bold, graphic portraits and beautiful poems present famous and lesser-known Latinos from varied backgrounds who have faced life's challenges in creative ways.
Juana & Lucas by Juana Medina
A spunky young girl from Colombia loves playing with her canine best friend and resists boring school activities, especially learning English, until her family tells her that a special trip is planned to an English-speaking place.
Lowriders in Space. Book 1 Cathy Camper
Lupe, Flapjack, and Elirio customize their car into a low rider for the Universal Car Competition to win the cash prize that'll enable them to buy their own garage.
Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo
Camino Rios lives for the summers when her father visits her in the Dominican Republic. But this time, on the day when his plane is supposed to land, Camino arrives at the airport to see crowds of crying people ... In New York City, Yahaira Rios is called to the principal's office, where her mother is waiting to tell her that her father, her hero, has died in a plane crash. Separated by distance -- and Papi's secrets -- the two girls are forced to face a new reality in which their father is dead and their lives are forever altered. And then, when it seems like they've lost everything of their father, they learn of each other.
With the Fire on High Elizabeth Acevedo
Teen mother Emoni Santiago struggles with the challenges of finishing high school and her dream of working as a chef.
In the late 1930s, civil war gripped Spain. When General Franco and his Fascists succeed in overthrowing the government, hundreds of thousands are forced to flee in a treacherous journey over the mountains to the French border. Among them is Roser, a pregnant young widow, who finds her life irreversibly intertwined with that of Victor Dalmau, an army doctor and the brother of her deceased love. To survive, the two must unite in a marriage neither of them wants, and together are sponsored by poet Pablo Neruda to embark on the SS Winnipeg along with 2,200 other refugees in search of a new life. As unlikely partners, they embrace exile and emigrate to Chile as the rest of Europe erupts in World War. Starting over on a new continent, their trials are just beginning. Over the course of their lives, they will face test after test. But they will also find joy as they wait patiently for a day when they are exiles no more and will find friends in the most unlikely of places. Through it all, it is that hope of being reunited with their home that keeps them going. And in the end, they will find that home might have been closer than they thought all along
En plena Guerra Civil española, el joven médico Víctor Dalmau, junto a su amiga pianista Roser Bruguera, se ven obligados a abandonar Barcelona, exiliarse y cruzar los Pirineos rumbo a Francia. A bordo del Winnipeg, un navío fletado por el poeta Pablo Neruda que llevó a más de dos mil españoles rumbo a Valparaíso, embarcarán en busca de la paz y la libertad que no tuvieron en su país. Recibidos como héroes en Chile --ese "largo pétalo de mar y nieve", en palabras del poeta chileno--, se integrarán en la vida social del país durante varias décadas hasta el golpe de Estado que derrocó al doctor Salvador Allende, amigo de Víctor por su común afición al ajedrez. Víctor y Roser se encontrarán nuevamente desarraigados, pero como dice la autora: "Si uno vive lo suficiente, todos los círculos se cierran".
Set on the Caribbean coast of South America, this love story brings together Fermina Daza, her distinguished husband, and a man who has secretly loved her for more than fifty years.
Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
The acclaimed author of Gods of Jade and Shadow returns with a darkly enchanting reimagining of Gothic fantasy, in which a spirited young woman discovers the haunting secrets of a beautiful old mansion in 1950s Mexico