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Tomas and the Library Ladyby Pat Mora
Synopses & Reviews
A Common Core Exemplar Text by an award-winning author-illustrator team
Tomás is a son of migrant workers. Every summer he and his family follow the crops north from Texas to Iowa, spending long, arduous days in the fields. At night they gather around to hear Grandfather's wonderful stories. But before long, Tomás knows all the stories by heart. "There are more stories in the library,"Papa Grande tells him. The very next day, Tomás meets the library lady and a whole new world opens up for him.
Based on the true story of the Mexican-American author and educator Tomás Rivera, a child of migrant workers who went on to become the first minority Chancellor in the University of California system, this inspirational story suggests what libraries--and education--can make possible. Raul Colón's warm, expressive paintings perfectly interweave the harsh realities of Tomás's life, the joyful imaginings he finds in books, and his special relationships with a wise grandfather and a caring librarian.
"A gentle text and innovative artwork. . . . While young readers and future librarians will find this an inspiring tale, the end note gives it a real kick: the story is based on an actual migrant worker [Tomás Rivera] who became chancellor of a university--where the library now bears his name."--Publishers Weekly
A young Texan finds refuge in his new Iowa town's library, where the librarian offers him cool comfort from hot summer days and whirlwind adventures through reading. Colon's beautiful scratchboard illustrations, in his textured, glowingly colored, rhythmic style, capture the warmth and the dreams that the boy finds in the world of books. A 1999-2000 Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List Book.
"A gentle text and innovative artwork depict a pivotal summer in a boy's life when he and his family leave their Texas home for farm work in Iowa. One morning, while his parents pick corn, Tomás visits the imposing town library and meets a kindly librarian who gently coaxes him inside. Throughout the hot days thereafter, she offers Tomás cool drinks of water and adventurous escapes into books; on slow days he teaches her Spanish until it's time to return home to Texas: 'I have a sad word to teach you today. The word is adiós. It means good-bye.' . . . While young readers and future librarians will find this an inspiring tale, the end note gives it a real kick: the story is based on an actual migrant worker [Tomás Rivera] who became chancellor of a university--where the library now bears his name."--Publishers Weekly
While helping his family in their work as migrant laborers far from their home, Tomas finds an entire world to explore in the books at the local public library. Based on a true story.
About the Author
Pat Mora, a Chicana educator, is a published poet and the author of several books for children.
Raul Colón was awarded the Silver Medal by the Society of Illustrators for Always My Dad, his first children's book.
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