Brujas, lechuzas y espantos / Witches, Owls and Spooks


The spine-tingling tales in this bilingual collection introduce intermediate readers to the superstition-filled folklore of the barrio.

by Alonso M. Perales
Translated by John Pluecker

ISBN: 978-1-55885-512-0
Publication Date: 2008
Format: Trade Paperback
Pages: 64
Imprint: Piñata Books

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In this bilingual collection of five stories, Don Cecilio tells the neighborhood children stories that make their hair stand on end. “In my barrio they told the story…” and so his cuento would begin. In “The Owl and the Bundle,” young Tomas disappears without a trace. Distraught, his parents and siblings look for him everywhere with no luck. Upon returning home, his father sees something curious, an owl flying above the house carrying a bundle with its talons. “Is it possible,” he wonders, “that the bundle is Little Tomas?” Could the owl have taken their precious son?

Based on oral tradition, these stories featuring witches, owls, and other spooky creatures have been told in Spanish-speaking barrios for generations. Now, this new edition with a first-ever English translation provided by John Pluecker will entertain and terrify a new generation of English- and Spanish-speaking children with the supernatural tales of the Hispanic community.

Originally published in Spanish in 1972 as La Lechuza: Cuentos de mi barrio (The Naylor Company), Brujas, lechuzas y espantos / Witches, Owls and Spooks will fascinate children interested in scary stories and at the same time will provide a window into a different time and place, when people lived a more rural life and winged shadows flitted across the darkened countryside.