In a winning celebration of the many loving circles of relationships in an extended family, newcomer Zamorano and veteran...

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LET'S EAT!

In a winning celebration of the many loving circles of relationships in an extended family, newcomer Zamorano and veteran Vivas have collaborated on a snapshot of two weeks in the lives of a large Spanish clan. Antonio, the narrator, is the smallest, and ""MamÊ is the biggest. She is going to have a baby any day now."" Every day at two o'clock, the family gathers at the big wooden table in the kitchen for a meal: ""When we are all at the table MamÊ is happy."" On Monday, one of the seven chairs is empty because PapÊ must work. ""Ay, quâ pena,"" sighs their mother. ""What a pity."" A different person is absent each subsequent day. On Saturday, the missing person is Mama, who has gone to the hospital to have a baby girl. It is Antonio's turn to sigh at the empty chair: ""Ay, quâ pena!"" Two weeks later they're all together again, and MamÊ sighs, ""Quâ maravilla! How wonderful that everyone is eating together!"" Set in the author's native Spain, there is an effortless use of Spanish words and phrases (a glossary is included) throughout this enveloping and big-hearted book. Vivas's handsome, stylized watercolors make use of rounded forms--bowls, table, Mama's belly, and, finally, the small head of Rosa, the new baby--to convey the warmth of the family circle. Quâ maravilla, indeed.

Pub Date: May 1, 1997

ISBN: 0439067588

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 1997