Children’s Booklist for Hispanic Heritage Month

Let’s celebrate Hispanic Heritage month with these charming books by Hispanic authors and/or illustrators. Some featured books are in Spanish only.

Too Many Tamales
by Gary Soto
illustrated by Ed Martinez

This is the story of a treasure thought to be lost in a batch of tamales; of a desperate and funny attempt by Maria and her cousins to eat their way out of trouble; and the warm way a family pulls together to make it a perfect Christmas after all.

Also available in Spanish as ¡QuĂ© montĂłn de tamales!


The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez
by Adrianna Cuevas

In this magical middle-grade debut novel from Adrianna Cuevas, The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez, a Cuban American boy must use his secret ability to communicate with animals to save the inhabitants of his town when they are threatened by a tule vieja, a witch that transforms into animals.


My Two Border Towns
by David Bowles
illustrated by Erika Meza

A picture book debut by an award-winning author about a boy’s life on the U.S.-Mexico border, visiting his favorite places on The Other Side with his father, spending time with family and friends, and sharing in the responsibility of community care.


Bright Star
by Yuyi Morales

From the creator of the New York Times bestseller Dreamers  comes a beautiful story about growth, empowerment, and finding one’s own voice.


They Call Me GĂĽero
by David Bowles

This important yet little-known civil rights story focuses on Roberto Alvarez, a student whose 1931 court battle against racism and school segregation in Lemon Grove, California, is considered the first time an immigrant community used the courts to successfully fight injustice. A must-read for young activists, or for anyone interested in standing up for what’s right. 


by Juan Felipe Herrera and illustrated by Lauren Castillo

A buoyant, breathtaking poem from Juan Felipe Herrera — brilliantly illustrated by Caldecott Honoree Lauren Castillo — speaks to every dreaming heart.


Pura’s Cuentos: How Pura BelprĂ© Reshaped Libraries with Her Stories
by Annette Bay Pimentel
illustrated by Magaly Morales

A lyrical, vibrant tribute to the amazing life and legacy of Pura Belpré, a lauded storyteller, librarian, and pioneer of bilingual storytimes


Zapato Power: Freddie Ramos and the Meteorite
by Jacqueline Jules and illustrated by Keiron Ward

When Freddie and Mr. Vaslov see something fall from the sky, Freddie learns it could be a meteorite. He’s determined to find it! Will Freddie find the rock from outer space before someone else does?


The Maps of Memory
by Marjorie Agosin 

In this “captivating and exquisite” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) sequel to the Pura BelprĂ© Award–winning I Lived on Butterfly Hill, thirteen-year-old Celeste Marconi returns home to Chile and after the dictator is removed, and makes it her mission to rebuild her community and find those who are still missing.


by Claribel A. Ortega

A magical adventure for fans of Amari and the Night Brothers and Nevermoor, about three witchlings who must work together to do the impossible if they have any hope of earning their full powers.


Alicia Alonso Dances On
by Rose Viña

As a young girl in Cuba, Alicia Alonso practiced ballet in tennis shoes. Within a few years, she was in New York City, with a promising ballet career. But her eyesight began to fail. When Alicia needed surgeries to save her vision, dancing was impossible, but she wouldn’t give up her dream. She found the strength and determination to return to the stage and become a prima ballerina. This is the true story of a woman who overcame her challenges, mastered her art, and inspired others to dance and dream.


En Busca De La Entrada Secreta 2
by Rosario Ana
¡La aventura continúa! Después del increíble descubrimiento en las montañas de los Picos de Europa, Alicia y Tom tienen que volver a sus casas, pero un suceso lo cambiará todo.

Amazon (Español)

El nuevo hogar de TĂ­a Fortuna: Una historia judĂ­a-cubana
by Ruth Behar
illustrated by Devon Holzwarth

TĂ­a Fortuna’s New Home: A Jewish Cuban Journey

A poignant multicultural ode to family and what it means to create a home as one girl helps her TĂ­a move away from her beloved Miami apartment.

Amazon (Español)
Amazon (English)

Cuba in my Pocket
by Adrianna Cuevas

By the author of 2021 Pura BelprĂ© Honor Book The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez, a sweeping, emotional middle grade historical novel about a twelve-year-old boy who leaves his family in Cuba to immigrate to the U.S. by himself, based on the author’s family history.


Juanita: The girl who counted the stars
by Lola Walder
illustrated by Martina Peluso
A magical story of a Guatemalan girl named Juanita, who loved cooking crunchy maize tortillas and counting stars every night.


Latinitas: Una celebraciĂłn de 40 sonadoras audaces
written and illustrated by Juliet MenĂ©ndez

Descubre cómo cuarenta latinas influyentes se convirtieron en las mujeres que hoy celebramos. En esta colección de biografías cortas de personajes de toda América Latina y de Estados Unidos, Juliet Menéndez explora los primeros pasitos con los que estas latinitas iniciaron su camino. Con hermosas ilustraciones, hechas a mano, Menéndez pone en relieve el poder que tienen los sueños de la infancia.

Amazon (Español)

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.

Amazon (English)

Antonio’s Amazing Gift
written by Naibe Reynoso
illustrated by Juliette Oberndorfer

A magical story of a Guatemalan girl named Juanita, who loved cooking crunchy maize tortillas and counting stars every night.


Dinner on Domingos
by Alexandra Katona 
illustrated by Claudia Navarro

“This magical home turns a normal Sunday into domingo: the best day of the week.” Warm memories wash over a first-generation Latinx American girl as she experiences a typical Sunday night dinner at her Abuelita’s house. As Alejandra thinks about all the good times her family has had there, she decides that she wants to be brave and try speaking Spanish with Abuelita so that they can deepen their bond. A timely #OwnVoices tale that reflects the experience of many American families.


¡Mambo Mucho Mambo! The Dance That Crossed Color Lines 
by Dean Robbins
illustrated by Eric Velasquez
New York City’s desegregated Palladium Ballroom springs to life with a diverse 1940s cast in this jazzy picture-book tribute to the history of mambo and Latin jazz.


The House on Mango Street
by Sandra Cisneros

Acclaimed by critics, beloved by readers of all ages, taught everywhere from inner-city grade schools to universities across the country, and translated all over the world, The House on Mango Street is the remarkable story of Esperanza Cordero. Told in a series of vignettes – sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes deeply joyous – it is the story of a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago, inventing for herself who and what she will become. Few other books in our time have touched so many readers and is a banned book in some US states. Recommended for readers in upper grades.


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