Saturday, February 23, 2008

Traditional Tales: Just a Minute: A Trickster Tale and Counting Book

Morales, Yuyi. 2003. Just a Minute: A Trickster Tale and Counting Book. San Francisco: Chronicle Books. ISBN:0811837580.

*Winner of the 2004 The Pura Belpré Medal for Illustration*

Grandma Beetle’s early morning had just begun when Señor Calavera, a hat-wearing skeleton, comes to her door saying that it is “time for her to come along with him” to the next life. But Grandma Beetle replies sweetly with “Just a minute” and explains that she has “just ONE house to sweep” before she goes. So Señor Calavera waits patiently and begins to count off in both English and Spanish the growing list of chores that Grandma Beetle must do before leaving with him. By the end of the day the frustrated skeleton learns that all of the work was in preparation for her birthday celebration, and that, along with her nine grandchildren, he was the tenth special guest. When the party is over and after she had kissed her grandchildren Grandma Beetle announces that she is ready to go with him, but discovers that Señor Calavera had gone without her but left a note saying that he had so much fun at her party that he can’t wait for the next one. With vibrant and richly colored illustrations that are delightfully simple yet with special detailed, Morales tells a traditional Mexican trickster tale of an old woman outwitting Death in a fun and never scary manner. Also serving as a beginning counting book with English and Spanish words, Just a Minute is book that can be enjoyed by readers of many ages.

*Visit the author, Yuyi Morales, website and download the Señor Calavera puppet and mask to make.
*Read other trickster tales from around the world: A Tale of Tricky Fox by Jum Aylesworth and Illus. by Barbara McClintock, the Trickster tale series by Gerald McDermott, Love and Roast Chicken: A Trickster Take from the Andes Mountains by Barbara Knutson, and Trickster Tales by Josepha Sherman,
*Read other Yuyi Morales books like Little Night and Sand Sister.

Special Note: Yuyi Morales has written a new book that is set to be release on August 19, 2008: Just in Case: A Trickster Tale and Spanish Alphabet Book. This will be the perfect companion book to Just A Minute.

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