OYE, CELIA! by Katie Sciurba

OYE, CELIA!

A Song for Celia Cruz
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 9
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Sciurba’s debut is a tribute to Celia Cruz, the beloved salsa singer and Cuban expatriate. A young girl smitten with Celia’s music narrates in free verse: “You sing to us, for us, in Spanish— / The language of Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Ecuador . . . / But even people who don’t understand the words / Understand the passion.” Rodriguez’s vibrant full-bleed, mixed-media pictures portray dancing couples and intent, joyful musicians whose sounds spill onto a Cuban streetscape. The ponytailed girl clutches an album emblazoned with Celia, eyes closed in the grip of a song. Sciurba acknowledges Cruz’s music for its historical evocations of an enslaved people and meld of moods and influences that was—and is—la salsa. Rodriguez counterposes scenes—of advancing Old World ships or the girl, singing along with her record—with larger images of Cruz, in wild coifs and bold jewelry, singing, dancing, kindling connections between cultures and generations. (glossary, author’s note, illustrator’s note) (Picture book. 5-9)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2007
ISBN: 0-8050-7468-6
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Henry Holt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 2007




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