A Common Core Exemplar Text by an award-winning author-illustrator team
Tomás is a son of migrant workers. Every summer he and his family follow the crops north from Texas to Iowa, spending long, arduous days in the fields. At night they gather around to hear Grandfather's wonderful stories. But before long, Tomás knows all the stories by heart. "There are more stories in the library," Papa Grande tells him. The very next day, Tomás meets the library lady and a whole new world opens up for him.
Based on the true story of the Mexican-American author and educator Tomás Rivera, a child of migrant workers who went on to become the first minority Chancellor in the University of California system, this inspirational story suggests what librariesand educationcan make possible. Raul Colón's warm, expressive paintings perfectly interweave the harsh realities of Tomás's life, the joyful imaginings he finds in books, and his special relationships with a wise grandfather and a caring librarian.
This book has been selected as a Common Core State Standards Text Exemplar (Grades K-1, Read-Aloud Stories) in Appendix B
About the Author
Pat Mora, a Chicana educator, is a published poet and the author of several books for children.
Raul Colón was awarded the Silver Medal by the Society of Illustrators for Always My Dad, his first children's book.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The illustrations in this book are amazing. They are made from wood carvings that are painted and pressed onto paper. This gives the illustrations a great texture, and life like appearance. This story is a fiction, but it is very possible that these events could take place. Furthermore, children who read this book are able to relate to the characters easily. All of these components make this book a good example of realistic fiction.
I have heard of this book many times and was excited to see it on the library shelf as one of my choices. I had no idea I would like the book this much. I didn't realize that it was inspired by the real life story of Tomas Rivera. This would be a great book for all students, but especially those that could relate to Tomas' life. And sharing with the students the true story of Tomas Rivera could be very inspirational for all readers. My favorite aspect of the book was that, when describing what Tomas was reading, Mora did not simply say he read about this and that, rather Tomas "smelled, rode, heard, and felt" all the different experiences he found in books. The mix of Spanish and English, and Thomas' teaching of the library lady, was also an excellent addition. The illustrations are beautiful. The textures and colors used are gentle and moving. Mora also shows the familial relationships accurately when she includes the grandfather as central to the story.