The CIP data calls this bilingual tale fiction, but Corpi's afterword places the story ""where imagination and memory blend."" She recalls a night during her childhood, in the small Mexican town of JÃŠltipan, when she and her older brother, Victor, explored a ruined house, once home of the revolutionary fighter Juan SebastiÃŠn. Learning his story from her grandmother, Corpi was introduced to the idea of personal destiny and was inspired to seek her own. That destiny led her away from JÃŠltipan to California, but the final page tells of her singing and telling stories to her own son, just as she was sung to as a child. It's a wonderful evocation of the early experiences and family love that give a child both roots and wings, but the Spanish version of the text is often more vivid than the English. On the first page, ""las luciÃ¢rnagas danzaban al ritmo del viento nocturno"" (literally, ""the fireflies danced to the rhythm of the night wind""), is rendered prosaically as ""fireflies danced in the night air."" In the intensely tropical-colored paintings, cats are purple, memories are turquoise, and a many-hued bus announces that its destination is ""El Mundo"" (""The World""). Fireflies and a number of photographs (presumably of Corpi's family) figure into the illustrations, each of which has a uniquely appropriate border.