I enjoy books of mini-biographies so I was very happy to get a copy of Latinitas on digital library loan. With gorgeous artwork, this children’s nonfiction book is a short and fun read for all ages.

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The summary, from Amazon:

Dream big with the Latinitas in Latinitas: Celebrating 40 Big Dreamers.

Discover how 40 influential Latinas became the women we celebrate today! In this collection of short biographies from all over Latin America and across the United States, Juliet Menéndez explores the first small steps that set the Latinitas off on their journeys. With gorgeous, hand-painted illustrations, Menéndez shines a spotlight on the power of childhood dreams.

From Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor to singer Selena Quintanilla to NASA’s first virtual reality engineer, Evelyn Miralles, this is a book for aspiring artists, scientists, activists, and more. These women followed their dreams―and just might encourage you to follow yours!

The book features Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Juana Azurduy de Padilla, Policarpa Salavarrieta, Rosa Peña de González, Teresa Carreño, Zelia Nuttall, Antonia Navarro, Matilde Hidalgo, Gabriela Mistral, Juana de Ibarbourou, Pura Belpré, Gumercinda Páez, Frida Kahlo, Julia de Burgos, Chavela Vargas, Alicia Alonso, Victoria Santa Cruz, Claribel Alegría, Celia Cruz, Dolores Huerta, Rita Moreno, Maria Auxiliadora da Silva, Mercedes Sosa, Isabel Allende, Susana Torre, Julia Alvarez, Sandra Cisneros, Sonia Sotomayor, Rigoberta Menchú Tum, Mercedes Doretti, Sonia Pierre, Justa Canaviri, Evelyn Miralles, Selena Quintanilla, Berta Cáceres, Serena Auñón, Wanda Díaz-Merced, Marta Vieira da Silva, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Laurie Hernandez.

Buy Latinitas here.

Again, I love books featuring bite-sized biographies, especially of influential women. The art in Latinitas is both cute and beautiful with kid-appeal. I loved looking at each illustration before delving in and learning more about the women, many of which I was familiar with and some that I learned about for the first time. I definitely admire all of them.

I love that the author seamlessly wove in Spanish and the other languages these women spoke into the text in a way that is understandable for any reader. She began by talking about the childhood of each woman, and how she manifested her hopes and dreams in adulthood.

Overall, this is a fun and short read with a lengthy bibliography. The author mentions a few more women she wanted to include who didn’t make the cut, including a sentence or two about them, at the end. This was a 4 star read for me and certainly a great addition to any library or children’s bookshelf.

Find out more about how I rate books here.

Latinitas: Celebrating 40 Big DreamersLatinitas: Celebrating 40 Big Dreamers by Juliet Menendez
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Fun and educational read! The artwork is gorgeous.

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Book Club Questions

  1. Who was your favorite woman included in this book and why?
  2. Did you research any of these women further after reading? Who? What resources can you share with us?
  3. Was there anyone you had hoped to see included in this book who was not?
  4. Did you learn about anyone you didn’t know about before reading this book?


Interested? Buy Latinitas.
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