Wednesday, September 16, 2020 Estefany Mendoza Salazar

Hispanic Heritage Month is a nationwide celebration that runs from September 15 to October 15. Originally a week-long celebration, President Ronald Reagan enacted a law in 1988 to extend the celebration to 30 days. During this time, many Latin American countries celebrate their independence, such as Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Chile.   

Hispanic refers to a person who is from, or a descendant of someone who is from, a Spanish-speaking country. Latino/a or Latinx refers to a person who is from, or a descendant of someone who is from, a country in Latin America. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are 56.6 million Hispanics / Latinos in the United States with Arlington’s Hispanic population numbering 60,817 or 18.27 percent. We invite you to celebrate all month long with our virtual programs, learn more here

Our librarians have curated a booklist for all ages that highlight Hispanic and Latin American culture and heritage.  

Children’s Books  

  • A New Kind of Wild by Zara Gonzalez Hoang
    • When Ren moves to Ava's city, he feels lost without the green and magic of his home, but not everything in the city is what meets the eye and Ren discovers that nothing makes you feel at home quite like a friend. a
  • My Papi has a motorcycle / Mi Papi tiene una moto by Isabel Quintero
    • When Daisy Ramona zooms around her neighborhood with her Papi on his motorcycle, she sees the people and places she's always known. She also sees a community that is rapidly changing around her. 

Middle-Grade Books 

  • The First Rule of Punk / La Primera Regla del punk  by Celia C. Pérez
    • Twelve-year-old María Luisa O'Neill-Morales (who really prefers to be called Malú) reluctantly moves with her Mexican-American mother to Chicago and starts seventh grade with a bang--violating the dress code with her punk rock aesthetic and spurning the middle school's most popular girl in favor of starting a band with a group of like-minded weirdos.  
  • The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora by Pablo Cartaya
    • For Arturo, summertime in Miami means playing basketball until dark, sipping mango smoothies, and keeping cool under banyan trees. And maybe a few shifts as junior lunchtime dishwasher at Abuela’s restaurant. Maybe. But this summer also includes Carmen, a cute poetry enthusiast who moves into Arturo’s apartment complex and turns his stomach into a deep fryer. He almost doesn’t notice the smarmy land developer who rolls into town and threatens to change it. Arturo refuses to let his family and community go down without a fight, and as he schemes with Carmen, Arturo discovers the power of poetry and protest through untold family stories and the work of José Martí. 

Young Adult Books 

  • Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero
    • Sixteen-year-old Gabi Hernandez chronicles her senior year in high school as she copes with her friend Cindy's pregnancy, friend Sebastian's coming out, father's meth habit, cravings for food and cute boys, and especially, the poetry that helps forge her identity.  
  • I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter / Yo no soy tu perfecta Hija mexicana by Erika L. Sánchez,
    • Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents' house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family. But Julia is not your perfect Mexican daughter. That was Olga's role. Then a tragic accident on the busiest street in Chicago leaves Olga dead and Julia left behind to reassemble the shattered pieces of her family. And no one seems to acknowledge that Julia is broken, too. Instead, her mother seems to channel her grief into pointing out every possible way Julia has failed.  
  • The Grief Keeper  by Alexandra Villasante
    • After escaping a detention center at the U.S. border, seventeen-year-old Marisol agrees to participate in a medical experiment hoping to keep her and her younger sister, Gabi, from being deported to El Salvador. 

Adult Books 

  • This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Díaz,
    • On a beach in the Dominican Republic, a doomed relationship flounders. In the heat of a hospital laundry room in New Jersey, a woman does her lover's washing and thinks about his wife. In Boston, a man buys his love child, his only son, a first baseball bat and glove. At the heart of these stories is the irrepressible, irresistible Yunior, a young hardhead whose longing for love is equaled only by his recklessness--and by the extraordinary women he loves and loses: artistic Alma; the aging Miss Lora; Magdalena, who thinks all Dominican men are cheaters; and the love of his life, whose heartbreak ultimately becomes his own. They remind us that passion always triumphs over experience, and that "the half-life of love is forever.  
  • The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao / La breve y maravillosa vida de Óscar Wao by Junot Díaz
    • Living with an old-world mother and rebellious sister, an urban New Jersey misfit dreams of becoming the next J. R. R. Tolkien and believes that a long-standing family curse is thwarting his efforts to find love and happiness. 
  • Like Water For Chocolate: A Novel In Monthly Installments, With Recipes, Romances, And Home Remedies / Como agua para chocolate : novela de entregas mensuales con recetas, amores, y remedios caseros by Laura Esquivel
    • Despite the fact that she has fallen in love with a young man, Tita, the youngest of three daughters born to a tyrannical rancher, must obey tradition and remain single and at home to care for her mother.