Books by Raúl Colón

LEONTYNE PRICE by Carole Boston Weatherford
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Dec. 23, 2014

"Weatherford and Colón's beautiful book does children a service by giving them one more African-American performer to applaud. (author's note) (Picture book/biography. 5-8)"
Rising from the Mississippi Delta to the stages of the Metropolitan Opera and La Scala, Price had a groundbreaking operatic career. Read full book review >
DRAW! by Raúl Colón
Kirkus Star
by Raúl Colón, illustrated by Raúl Colón
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Sept. 16, 2014

"Young artists, reach for your sketchbooks. (Picture book. 4-8)"
A wordless picture book celebrates the power of art and imagination. Read full book review >
PORTRAITS OF HISPANIC AMERICAN HEROES by Juan Felipe Herrera
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Aug. 7, 2014

"A worthy introduction to some of the Hispanic-Americans who have left their marks on the country and culture through their commitment and dedication. (Biography. 8-12)"
Short and engaging biographies of 20 inspirational Hispanic-Americans from fields as varied as sports, arts, sciences, politics, and teaching. Read full book review >
ABUELO by Arthur Dorros
by Arthur Dorros, illustrated by Raúl Colón
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: April 22, 2014

"This book succeeds at both specificity and universality, presenting the distinct culture of the gaucho cowboy and the plains of South America through a story that will resonate broadly with many children and families. (Picture book. 4-7)"
More than 20 years after Abuela, illustrated by Elisa Kleven (1991), Dorros offers a gentle story of the lessons a grandfather imparts to his grandson while riding horses together on the plains before the boy moves to the city. Read full book review >
BASEBALL IS . . . by Louise Borden
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"Love of our national game shines in every word and picture. A grand slam. (Picture book. 7-10)"
Baseball is more than a sport; in Borden's unabashed celebration, it embodies the essence of the social, historic and emotional fabric of our nation. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 19, 2013

"An artful and inspiring effort. (quotations, afterword, author's note, glossary, Internet resources, bibliography) (Picture book/biography. 7-9)"
Burleigh weaves imagination and information to sketch the life of a female scientist and illuminate her achievements. Read full book review >
ANNIE AND HELEN by Deborah Hopkinson
Released: Sept. 11, 2012

"The story of this remarkable pair does not grow old, and here is a charming way to learn it for the first time. (author's note; list of acknowledgments, print and online sources) (Picture book biography. 5-10)"
A clear, simple narrative retells a powerful story of determination and triumph for a team of two: Anne Sullivan and her famous student, Helen Keller. Read full book review >
DON'T FORGET, GOD BLESS OUR TROOPS by Jill Biden
Released: June 5, 2012

"Teachers and counselors will reach for this often for the extensive, excellent resources in the backmatter as well as the story. (author's note) (Picture book. 4-8)"
Second Lady Biden delivers a sensitive, non-political account of one family's deployment. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 1, 2011

"She has been a ballerina, a teacher, a Cuban and a role model for those with handicaps. Truly a noteworthy life, poignantly rendered here. (notes, bibliography) (Picture books/biography. 8-14)"
A biography in poems and pictures of the prima ballerina assoluta of Cuba, who thrilled audiences for decades with her extraordinary technique and beautiful interpretations of Giselle and other classics. Read full book review >
GOOD-BYE, HAVANA!  HOLA, NEW YORK! by Edie Colón
Released: Aug. 23, 2011

"While it is hardly one-of-a-kind, it's not a bad addition to immigration literature for this audience. (glossary, author's note) (Picture book. 4-8)"
An immigrant tale builds on the author's childhood experiences. Read full book review >
FICTION
Released: March 1, 2010

"Colón's exquisitely textured, full-page and border watercolor-and-pencil illustrations and such pleasing design details as flying birds and suns complete this gorgeous collection. (Folktales. 3 & up)"
A successful Mexican-American bookseller makes his debut as a writer with this bilingual collection of seven folktales from Spanish and Latin-American lore. Read full book review >
CHILD OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT by Paula Young Shelton
FICTION
Released: Dec. 22, 2009

"Essential. (bibliography) (Picture book/memoir. 4-9)"
Civil rights can be a difficult topic, even for adults, so finding simple language to explain the complexity of injustice and oppression to children is challenging. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY
Released: May 13, 2008

"Gentle, powerful and healing. (Picture book. 7-10)"
Two boys, one an African-American, one a Polish Jew, learn from their fathers' pride and self-respect. Read full book review >
ANGELA AND THE BABY JESUS by Frank McCourt
FICTION
Released: Nov. 6, 2007

"The same story is also available in an edition targeted at adults, with more sophisticated illustrations by Loren Long. (Picture book. 6-10)"
Pulitzer Prize-winner McCourt offers a sweetly sentimental, longer Christmas story about his mother, Angela, who is anticipating the holiday with her family in the Ireland of a past generation. Read full book review >
SUGAR CANE by Patricia Storace
FICTION
Released: July 1, 2007

"Storace's glimmering prose and Colón's luminous artwork are a perfect combination and complement to the story, and a dreamlike tribute to the beauty of the sea. (Fiction. 6-10)"
In this lyrical retelling of the classic Grimm tale, a young couple lives by the sea. Read full book review >
MY FATHER’S HOUSE by Kathi Appelt
POETRY
Released: May 1, 2007

"Colón's illustrations include people of different ethnic groups and a flowing, surrealistic interpretation of planets, stars and imaginary mansions floating under a rainbow canopy. (Picture book/religion. 4-8)"
A familiar Bible verse from the Book of John ("in my Father's house are many mansions") serves as the inspiration for this rhyming text expressing thanks for the wonders of the natural world. Read full book review >
HOW TO BAKE AN AMERICAN PIE by Karma Wilson
FICTION
Released: May 1, 2007

"From page to shining page, this should be a tasty treat for young patriots. (Picture book. 4-8)"
How do you bake an American pie? Read full book review >
PLAY BALL! by Jorge Posada
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: March 1, 2006

"Young fans of baseball, especially of Posada and the New York Yankees, will gain insight into the making of a major leaguer, and maybe some inspiration as well. (Picture book. 6-10)"
Growing up in Puerto Rico, Jorge lives and breathes baseball. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 11, 2005

"Colón's gorgeous illustrations (with his round, swirling scratchboard style in warm, buttery colors) steal the show here, as the pleasantly rhythmic but overly meandering tall tale isn't arresting enough plot-wise to avoid bogging down in its heaps of hyperbole. (Picture book. 6-8)"
Doña Flor, beautiful giantess of the American Southwest, is so tall she plucks estrellas from the sky and grabs snow from mountaintops to wake herself up in the morning. Read full book review >
JOSÉ! BORN TO DANCE by Susanna Reich
HISTORY
Released: Aug. 1, 2005

"An inspiring tribute to a major figure in the arts, featuring some of Colón's most moving, powerful work yet. (Picture book/biography. 7-9)"
This first introduction for children to renowned dancer and choreographer José Limón pairs equally soaring text and visuals. Read full book review >
ROBERTO CLEMENTE by Jonah Winter
BIOGRAPHY
Released: March 1, 2005

"A well-constructed introduction to a compassionate, dignified, multi-talented sports hero. (Picture book/biography. 6-10)"
Growing up in Puerto Rico, Roberto Clemente dreamed of playing baseball. Read full book review >
ORSON BLASTS OFF! by Raúl Colón
FICTION
Released: April 1, 2004

"Happily, this pedantic afterthought doesn't sour the sweep and exuberance of Orson's odyssey. (Picture book. 6-8)"
A much-praised illustrator files a Chris Van Allsburg-style flight plan for his first solo outing. Read full book review >
WHAT IS GOODBYE? by Nikki Grimes
POETRY
Released: April 1, 2004

"Small colored-pencil illustrations thoughtfully capture some of the conflicting emotions and images in the poetry. (author's note) (Poetry. 9-13)"
The unimaginably painful situation of losing a sibling is the theme of this poetry collection, told in alternating viewpoints by a younger brother and sister in the year after their older brother's sudden death from an unspecified cause. Read full book review >
Released: May 1, 2003

"A stellar read-aloud volume as well as just right for independent readers. (Folktales. 8-12)"
Yolen introduces a grand collection of 14 tales with a letter to her sons and grandsons. Read full book review >
RISE THE MOON by Eileen Spinelli
FICTION
Released: March 1, 2003

"Perhaps this surrealistic lullaby will be sweetly soporific to some, but its forced rhythms and oblique verbal and visual metaphors are more likely just to leave readers yawning. (Picture book/poetry. 4-8)"
A benevolent, beaming moon casts its golden glow across the pages, but questionable choices by both author and illustrator relegate this rather esoteric effort to the lesser designation of lovely mood piece. Read full book review >
PANDORA by Robert Burleigh
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: May 1, 2001

"Very different in tone and effect from the lyrical Dora's Box (1998), this is darker but still accessible, though it may have trouble finding its audience because of its mature treatment. (cast of characters) (Picture book/nonfiction. 6-9)"
The myth of Pandora is told in compelling free verse with striking, colored-pencil and watercolor illustrations. Read full book review >
THE SNOWMAN’S PATH by Helena Clare Pittman
FICTION
Released: Sept. 1, 2000

"Readers will wish they too lived along that alley. (Picture book. 8-10)"
An air of magical realism hangs about this childhood fantasy strongly echoed in Colón's combed, golden-toned winter scenes. Read full book review >
A WEAVE OF WORDS by Robert D. San Souci
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: March 1, 1998

"Col¢n's etched watercolors, shadowy and talismanic, ably support this tale of love and sapience and derring-do, which San Souci tells with perfect pacing and alluring imagery. (Picture book/folklore. 5-9)"
From San Souci (Nicholas Pipe, 1997, etc.), a blending of a handful of Armenian folktales into one story that can be filed under plain old good advice, ornately illustrated by Col¢n. Read full book review >
TOMAS AND THE LIBRARY LADY by Pat Mora
FICTION
Released: Aug. 1, 1997

"Col¢n's dreamy illustrations capture the brief friendship and its life-altering effects in soft earth tones, using round sculptured shapes that often depict the boy right in the middle of whatever story realm he's entered. (Picture book. 7-10)"
A charming, true story about the encounter between the boy who would become chancellor at the University of California at Riverside and a librarian in Iowa. Read full book review >
CELEBRATION! by Jane Resh Thomas
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: June 1, 1997

"Lacking the humorous tumult of Cynthia Rylant and Stephen Gammell's The Relatives Came (1985), the effect is fairly wholesome, but without benefit of strong emotion or a storyteller's voice, there are no fireworks. (Picture book. 5-8)"
One African-American family's Fourth of July picnic takes a food-laden, loving approach that feels more manufactured than genuine. Read full book review >
GRANDMOTHER'S GARDEN by John Archambault
FICTION
Released: Aug. 1, 1996

"A warm, optimistic work. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Grandmother's Garden ($13.95; PLB $15.95; book & cassette $19.95; Aug. 1996; 32 pp.; 0-382-39653-7; PLB 0-382-39652-9; book & cassette 0-382-39664-2): In an extended poetic metaphor, Archambault (The Birth of the Whale, p. 222, etc.) compares the earth to Grandmother Rose's garden, where all flowers grow together. ``Different colors, different faces, different names/Underneath our skin, we are all the same./We are flowering faces reaching for the sun./In Grandmother's garden, we are all one./In Grandmother's garden, we are all one.'' These words seem to belong to a song, and here are sunnily set to Col¢n's illustrations, created in his now-trademark style. Read full book review >
MY MAMA HAD A DANCING HEART by Libba Moore Gray
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Sept. 1, 1995

"The reflective mood of the story may appealat firstmore to adults, but the sharing of this book between generations creates a nice parallel to the intimacy of parent and child in the story. (Picture book. 4-8)"
A lyrical dance through the seasons. Read full book review >
ALWAYS MY DAD by Sharon Dennis Wyeth
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: Jan. 16, 1995

"Newcomer Col¢n's muted, stylized prints beautifully enhance the bittersweet tale; with sculpted forms set against a scratchy texture, and filled with playful, pliant light, this is some of the most evocative art ever to grace a page. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Based on her own childhood experiences, Wyeth's first picture book tells of a girl's special relationship with her father. Read full book review >