A Mummy in Her Backpack / Una momia en su mochila
This entertaining tale for intermediate readers references the Museo de las Momias, or the Mummy Museum, in Guanajuato, Mexico.
by James Luna
Publication Date: 2012
Format: Trade Paperback
Imprint: Piñata Books
Flor enjoyed her two-week trip to Mexico, though she’s glad to be back at school. But when she tries to pull her homework out of her backpack, she’s shocked to feel a cold hand clutching hers. Thinking that the pesky boys in her class are playing a trick on her, she turns around to look into her pack. She’s even more stunned when she sees two yellow eyes peeking out at her.
Flor and her best friend Lupita stare in astonishment as a cowboy hat, followed by a small man with dark yellow skin and thin, stringy hair, emerges from her backpack. He introduces himself as Rafa, a mummy from the famous museum in Guanajuato. Flor visited the museum and learned that some people buried there mummified naturally. She can’t believe that an actual mummy hitched a ride with her to the United States!
Amusing hijinks ensue as the girls try to hide Rafa from their teacher, classmates and family. And when Rafa realizes that it’s almost the Day of the Dead, or El Día de los Muertos, he longs to return home. The girls are forced to reveal their secret and seek help from an adult. How can they get Rafa home in time for the annual celebration honoring deceased loved ones? Published in a bilingual “flip” format, young readers ages 8 to 12 will savor this entertaining story about mummies, friendship and responsibility.
Named to the 2013-2014 Tejas Star Reading List
“In this bilingual book, a young girl finds a surprise upon returning from a trip to Guanajuato, Mexico…Luna moves the story at a nice clip…The Spanish translation follows the original English version. An innocuous Halloween and Day of the Dead book for readers who prefer to skip scarier fare.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Even the dead seek a little adventure. [This is] a choice pick for any youth seeking a novella in two languages, much recommended.”—The Midwest Book Review
JAMES LUNA is an elementary school teacher in Riverside, California. The Runaway Piggy / El cochinito fugitivo (Piñata Books, 2010) is his first published book for children and a winner of the Tejas Star Award. Publishers Weekly praised Luna’s work, declaring, “The story of The Gingerbread Man gets a lively Mexican makeover.” A Mummy in Her Backpack / Una momia en su mochila (Piñata Books, 2012) is his first bilingual book for older kids.
Learn more at moonstories.com.
ATOS Interest Level: Lower/Middle Grades
Category: Intermediate Reader
ATOS English: 3.5
ATOS Spanish: 3.1
LEXILE SPANISH: 540L
Accelerated Reader Quiz #: 163965