Following My Nana's Remedies/Los Remedios De Mi Nana, illustrated by Edna San Miguel (2002), Rivera-Ashford offers another semiautobiographical and child-friendly recounting of the importance of sharing intergenerational wisdom, this time accompanied by Castro L.’s expressive illustrations.
From a banged-up forehead to a fever in the middle of the night, there are many opportunities for Aaron to observe his tata sharing concern and good cheer as he dispenses remedies based primarily on medicinal herbs to neighbors and friends. A Latino nonsense ditty used to console children when they are sick or hurt comes in handy when Aaron’s little brother’s itchy feet need attention ("Heal, heal, little tail of a frog; if you don’t heal today, you’ll be healed tomorrow"). Readers will be glad to know that Nana from the earlier book makes an appearance, and they may even wish that they were prescribed her freshly made empanadas, which she shares with the patients as part of Tata’s treatments. The large and colorful single-page illustrations successfully elicit empathy for those seeking relief from various maladies at Tata’s door. Botanically correct depictions of the plants utilized in the remedies decorate the text pages and are duplicated in the appendix, where properties and usage are described in more detail than within the fully bilingual text.
So many cultural treasures are dependent on word-of-mouth transmission, and this story encourages grandparents to lovingly pass on their knowledge to eager grandchildren and family members. (Bilingual picture book. 4-11)