Butterflies on Carmen Street / Mariposas en la calle Carmen
This engaging bilingual picture book about migration combines the wonder of nature with the places we carry in our hearts.
by Monica Brown
Illustrations by April Ward
Spanish translation by Gabriela Baeza Ventura
Publication Date: October 31, 2007
Imprint: Piñata Books
- About the Book
- About the Author
- About the Illustrator
- About the Translator
- Educational Resource
“Today is Butterfly Day!” Julianita excitedly tells her grandfather as they make their way down Carmen Street to school one morning. Today is the day Julianita and her friends have been waiting for—they’re going to learn about monarch butterflies. But what’s even more thrilling is they’re each going to receive their very own caterpillar to raise! When Julianita gets hers, she names him Tiger because of his striking yellow and black stripes.
Ms. Rodríguez teaches her students all about the monarch. But Julianita already knows that they fly south thousands of miles every winter because her grandfather remembers seeing the beautiful monarchs in his village in the highlands of Mexico. As the children feed and care for their caterpillars, they anxiously anticipate the transformation from caterpillar to chrysalis to butterfly.
When Tiger finally emerges from his chrysalis, Julianita doesn’t want to let him go. She worries that he will get lost on his way to Mexico. “Tiger knows the way to Mexico because it’s in his heart,” her Abuelito reassures her. She feels sad to see Tiger fly away, but Julianita knows that someday, she will follow him to her grandfather’s magical Mexico.
Paired with April Ward’s charming illustrations that depict Julianita’s neighborhood—her home on Carmen Street, the bench where Abuelito rests in Palo Verde Park, her parents’ store that sells everything in the whole wide world—this book by award-winning author Monica Brown is sure to entertain and educate kids ages 3-9. This is a perfect choice for children learning about insects and the forces of nature.
Named to the 2008-2009 Tejas Star Reading List
Finalist, ForeWord Magazine’s 2008 Book of the Year Award
“In vibrant illustrations…[Julianita] learns about the life cycle of monarch butterflies and watches as her caterpillar makes its miraculous transformation… The generations are linked by the beauty of nature, which knows no borders.”―MultiCultural Review
“This seamlessly weaves two stories in one…the science behind the project is well explained and the bonding between [Julianita] and her grandfather rings true.”―Críticas
MONICA BROWN is the award-winning author of multicultural books for children, including My Name is Celia: The Life of Celia Cruz / Me llamo Celia: La vida de Celia Cruz (Luna Rising, 2004) and My Name is Gabriela: The Life of Gabriela Mistral/ Me llamo Gabriela: La vida de Gabriela Mistral (Luna Rising, 2005). My Name is Celia won the Américas Award for Children’s Literature and was named a Pura Belpré Honor Book. She teaches Latino/a literature at Northern Arizona University.
Learn more at monicabrown.net.
APRIL WARD received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, and has been working in children’s book publishing ever since. April currently lives in New York and works as a designer when not illustrating books. She also illustrated Juan and the Chupacabras / Juan y el Chupacabras (Piñata Books, 2006).
GABRIELA BAEZA VENTURA is an associate professor of Spanish at the University of Houston. She has translated numerous children’s books, including Dalia’s Wondrous Hair / El cabello maravilloso de Dalia (Arte Público Press, 2014), There’s a Name for this Feeling: Stories / Hay un nombre para lo que siento: Cuentos (2014), Adelita and the Veggie Cousins / Adelita y las primas verduritas (2011) and Remembering Grandma / Recordando a Abuela (2003).
Learn more by visiting her faculty page.
ATOS Interest Level: Lower Grades
Category: Picture Book
ATOS English: 4.1
ATOS Spanish: 4.1
Accelerated Reader Quiz #: 118999