Zulema and the Witch Owl / Zulema y la Bruja Lechuza
An entertaining bilingual picture book featuring a spooky character from Mexican-American folklore.
by Xavier Garza
Spanish translation by Carolina Villarroel
Publication Date: May 31, 2009
Imprint: Piñata Books
Zulema Ortiz is the meanest little girl in the whole wide world. She doesn’t have any friends, animals run away from her in fear, and her mom doesn’t know what to do with her. But maybe, just maybe, her almost ninety-year-old Grandma Sabina does.
When Grandma Sabina comes to live with the family, the first thing Zulema says to her is, “You sure look old and ugly.” Grandma Sabina calmly warns her rude granddaughter about the Witch Owl who prowls the night looking for mean little children, but Zulema just laughs defiantly at such a preposterous story. Nothing scares her because she’s the meanest child in the world!
So when she gets into bed one night and something begins to tap at her window, Zulema isn’t afraid at first. She’s mad. “Nobody plays tricks on me. Only I can play tricks!” But as the noise at her window continues, the insolent little girl begins to lose her bravado. And when a huge owl with glowing red eyes smashes through the window and swoops into her room, Zulema is ready to agree to its demands—even if it means promising to be nice!
In this exciting story about the consequences of being mean to others, Zulema learns something about herself and possibly her grandmother too. The imagination of children ages 4-9 will soar with this fun, suspenseful story by acclaimed author and artist Xavier Garza, whose knack for storytelling and creating lively illustrations captures the spirit of naughty Zulema.
Juan and the Chupacabras / Juan y el Chupacabras wins the 2007-2008 Tejas Star Book Award
“An excellent choice for story time and classroom sharing.”—School Library Journal on Juan and the Chupacabras / Juan y el Chupacabras
“Smoothly integrated information in fluid colloquial English and Spanish combines with grainy graphic-novel-style illustrations executed in acrylic to create an oddly compelling and sophisticated package. Certain to be a popular choice.”—School Library Journal on Lucha Libre:
The Man in the Silver Mask : A Bilingual Cuento
“[This is] an attractive package with definite appeal for boys. This title is sure to become popular in both libraries and bookstores.”—Críticas (starred review) on Lucha Libre:The Man in the Silver Mask: A Bilingual Cuento
Born and raised in the Rio Grande Valley, XAVIER GARZA is a prolific author, artist and storyteller whose work focuses primarily on his experiences growing up in the small border town of Rio Grande City. He graduated from the University of Texas – Pan American in 1994 with a BFA in Art and has exhibited his art and performed his stories in venues throughout the United States. His work includes Charro Claus and the Tejas Kid (Cinco Puntos Press, 2008), Juan and the Chupacabras / Juan y el Chupacabras (Piñata Books, 2006), Lucha Libre: The Man in the Silver Mask: A Bilinguel Cuento (Cinco Puntos Press, 2005) and Creepy Creatures and Other Cucuys (Piñata Books, 2004). Xavier Garza lives with his family in San Antonio.
CAROLINA VILLARROEL is the Brown Foundation Director of Research at Arte Público Press. Carolina began at Arte Público Press in 1997 as a Research Assistant while pursuing her Ph.D. in the UH Hispanic Studies Department. She now oversees the Recovering the U.S. Hispanic Literary Heritage Project.
ATOS Interest Level: Lower Grades
Category: Picture Book
ATOS English: 3.7
ATOS Spanish: 3.8
Accelerated Reader Quiz #: 131068