Sunday, June 24, 2012

Children's Book Review: Just A Minute

Just a Minute!: A Trickster Tale and Counting Book

Just A Minute
Written and illustrated by:  Yuyi Morales
Published by: Chronicle Books, 2003

In this original trickster tale, Senor Calavera arrives unexpectedly at Grandma Beetle's door. He requests that she leave with him right away. "Just a minute," Grandma Beetle tells him. She still has one house to sweep, two pots of tea to boil, three pounds of corn to make into tortillas -- and that's just the start! Using both Spanish and English words to tally the party preparations, Grandma Beetle cleverly delays her trip and spends her birthday with a table full of grandchildren and her surprise guest. This spirited tribute to the rich traditions of Mexican culture is the perfect introduction to counting in both English and Spanish. The vivacious illustrations and universal depiction of a family celebration are sure to be adored by young readers everywhere.

* As we read the first page of this book and a skeleton (Senor Calavera) comes to Grandma Beetle's door telling her that it's "time for her to come along with him" I wasn't so sure that this was going to be appropriate for the kids.  Luckily, they didn't ask me why the skeleton was asking her to come with him because I'm not so sure that I could or would want to explain it to them.  They enjoyed the english-spanish numbers and seeing what Grandma was busy with for each.  The pictures were colorful but honestly, the skeleton was a little scary-looking if I do say so myself!  Overall, I thought that this was an okay read.

Family Rating: 1 thumb up.

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