A sassy gordita attempts to outwit a bevy of desert creatures in this retelling of "The Gingerbread Man."
Ketteman and Terry (The Three Little Gators, 2009) reteam for this cumulative tale centered on the escapades of a fleet-footed, deep-fried corn cake. From her humble beginnings in the oven of Araña (spider), Señorita Gordita sets off across the Southwestern desert, besting the spider, a lizard, a rattlesnake, a scorpion, a javalina and a coyote. All of these animals are eager to enjoy a taste of the feisty, chatty snack, but “with a flip and a skip and a zip-zoom-zip,” Señorita Gordita manages to escape them all. When she arrives at the saguaro where Búho (owl) awaits, she may have finally met her match. The author introduces young readers to Spanish vocabulary through desert geography, flora and fauna, including all of the animals in the tale. Although saguaros and regional clichés abound, the illustrator’s use of brilliant colors and humor will hold the attention of younger and older readers, as will Señorita Gordita’s parting words to each of the animals she escapes. The author’s inclusion of a recipe for gorditas rectifies the story’s abrupt ending.
A welcome retelling, particularly suited for reading aloud to groups. (Spanish glossary, recipe) (Picture book. 4-7)