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Auntie Luce’s Talking Paintings

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Every winter, a young girl flies to Haiti to visit her Auntie Luce, a painter. The moment she steps off the plane, she feels a wall of heat, and familiar sights soon follow — the boys selling water ice by the pink cathedral, the tap tap buses in the busy streets, the fog and steep winding road to her aunt’s home in the mountains. The girl has always loved Auntie Luce’s paint Every winter, a young girl flies to Haiti to visit her Auntie Luce, a painter. The moment she steps off the plane, she feels a wall of heat, and familiar sights soon follow — the boys selling water ice by the pink cathedral, the tap tap buses in the busy streets, the fog and steep winding road to her aunt’s home in the mountains. The girl has always loved Auntie Luce’s paintings — the houses tucked into the hillside, colorful fishing boats by the water, heroes who fought for and won the country’s independence. Through Haiti’s colors, the girl comes to understand this place her family calls home. And when the moment finally comes to have her own portrait painted for the first time, she begins to see herself in a new way, tracing her own history and identity through her aunt’s brush. Includes an author’s note and a glossary.


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Every winter, a young girl flies to Haiti to visit her Auntie Luce, a painter. The moment she steps off the plane, she feels a wall of heat, and familiar sights soon follow — the boys selling water ice by the pink cathedral, the tap tap buses in the busy streets, the fog and steep winding road to her aunt’s home in the mountains. The girl has always loved Auntie Luce’s paint Every winter, a young girl flies to Haiti to visit her Auntie Luce, a painter. The moment she steps off the plane, she feels a wall of heat, and familiar sights soon follow — the boys selling water ice by the pink cathedral, the tap tap buses in the busy streets, the fog and steep winding road to her aunt’s home in the mountains. The girl has always loved Auntie Luce’s paintings — the houses tucked into the hillside, colorful fishing boats by the water, heroes who fought for and won the country’s independence. Through Haiti’s colors, the girl comes to understand this place her family calls home. And when the moment finally comes to have her own portrait painted for the first time, she begins to see herself in a new way, tracing her own history and identity through her aunt’s brush. Includes an author’s note and a glossary.

30 review for Auntie Luce’s Talking Paintings

  1. 4 out of 5

    Calista

    I LOVE the colors of this book. Wow, it’s colorful and beautiful. The colors sparkle and shimmer and dazzle my eye. The story is about Haiti, a place I know little about. A young girl has her aunt, an artist, paint her portrait each year. She leaves her home in the snow and goes to Haiti in the heat to visit her aunt in Haiti. We learn some of Haiti’s history from the paintings she looks at that the aunt has drawn. There is also a short page in the back by the author about the history of Haiti. I LOVE the colors of this book. Wow, it’s colorful and beautiful. The colors sparkle and shimmer and dazzle my eye. The story is about Haiti, a place I know little about. A young girl has her aunt, an artist, paint her portrait each year. She leaves her home in the snow and goes to Haiti in the heat to visit her aunt in Haiti. We learn some of Haiti’s history from the paintings she looks at that the aunt has drawn. There is also a short page in the back by the author about the history of Haiti. Aunt Luce has a way of painting a wonderful life in Haiti. She sees the good and the bad and she still loves it. Haiti won its independence from France shortly after the American revolution. France lost all those slaves. That is why they had to sell the Louisiana Purchase to us for money. No country in the world would recognize the new black nation or trade with them and they had to sign agreements with France and countries that have left them in poverty since then. I hate the injustice of it. To this day, it still affects them. It seems it’s time to change their dynamic. The kids didn’t quite know what to make of this story. They thought it was interesting to get someone to paint your portrait and they loved seeing the paintings. They asked questions about Haiti and we had to look up stuff on goggle as no one in the house knew a lot. The niece also loved the colors of the book and she gave this 3 stars. The nephew thought it was sort of a boring read. She’s getting her self painted, big deal. He gave this 2 stars.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Margarita Rodriguez

    For this book, I decided to make a text-to-world connection. Making a text-to-world connection is making a connection between the text and real-world happenings in present time or in history. This book is told in the perspective of a Haiti-American girl who retells her memory of the first time her aunt in Haiti painted a portrait of her. Through this memory she portrays Haiti in a different light, a more positive one that shares its beauty and the struggle. Haiti is often portrayed in media as a For this book, I decided to make a text-to-world connection. Making a text-to-world connection is making a connection between the text and real-world happenings in present time or in history. This book is told in the perspective of a Haiti-American girl who retells her memory of the first time her aunt in Haiti painted a portrait of her. Through this memory she portrays Haiti in a different light, a more positive one that shares its beauty and the struggle. Haiti is often portrayed in media as a very poor, and underdeveloped country, and through this book, Francie Latour shares the colorful reality of what Haiti is and was, giving a glimpse of the Black history that is never taught in American schools. The reason I chose to make a text-to-world connection is because this concept of ignoring and not acknowledging Black history has been an ongoing issue in American education and is often times represented by Martin Luther King Jr. when there is far more that needs to be taught. Much like the genocide going on in Sudan right now, these countries need to be spoken about and taught in schools because these students can and will most likely be from this descent and deserve to be represented accurately.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kelsey

    Age: K-3rd grade Art: Acrylic, Painter Family: Aunt and niece History: Haitian revolution Identity: Haitian American protagonist, Haitian Aunt Our Voices: Haitian American author, Dominican Canadian illustrator Tough Issue: Revolution, mixed cultural identities Every winter, Auntie Luce welcomes her American niece back to her home in Haiti. Affectionately called "Ti Chou," she fondly connects with Auntie Luce's paintings, especially portraits of herself that hold colors that she has never seen in a mir Age: K-3rd grade Art: Acrylic, Painter Family: Aunt and niece History: Haitian revolution Identity: Haitian American protagonist, Haitian Aunt Our Voices: Haitian American author, Dominican Canadian illustrator Tough Issue: Revolution, mixed cultural identities Every winter, Auntie Luce welcomes her American niece back to her home in Haiti. Affectionately called "Ti Chou," she fondly connects with Auntie Luce's paintings, especially portraits of herself that hold colors that she has never seen in a mirror. Auntie Luce explains that painting allows her "to remember what I've seen and heard and smelled and felt" including the past and present of Haitian life. Through a loving dialogue between adult and child, Latour provides an accessible introduction to more complex issues without belittling them, including colonialism, mixed cultural identities and a feeling of being an outsider, and embracing your cultural roots. Little details about sitting still for a portrait and providing "I spy" opportunities within the artwork will help keep listeners engaged.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jourdan

    The illustrations were gorgeous and authentic! They resembled the paintings I fell in love with as a child! I am Haitian American, and would have loved a children's book like this as a kid. Such a beautiful way to educate and instill pride. Whether the child is of Haitian Descent or not; this would we be great to expose your child to other cultures. Loved <3 The illustrations were gorgeous and authentic! They resembled the paintings I fell in love with as a child! I am Haitian American, and would have loved a children's book like this as a kid. Such a beautiful way to educate and instill pride. Whether the child is of Haitian Descent or not; this would we be great to expose your child to other cultures. Loved <3

  5. 4 out of 5

    Robin

    Beautifully illustrated family story with a peek into the history of Haiti. Recommended for ages 6-9.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Patricia McLaughlin

    A bit text heavy, but a compelling story about a girl’s visit to her Auntie Luce’s home in Haiti with colorful illustrations and a painterly version of Haitian history.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ashley Goyco

    Text-to-Text Connection: The young girl from this story reminds me of the author, Diana Abu-Jaber. In her memoir, The Language of Baklava, Diana Abu-Jaber documents her life as a Jordanian American through her memories of food. At different points in the novel, Abu-Jaber struggles with feeling not American enough and not Jordanian enough. In this story, the young girl struggles with not feeling Haitian enough and not American enough. Both protagonists feel displaced by having two cultures because Text-to-Text Connection: The young girl from this story reminds me of the author, Diana Abu-Jaber. In her memoir, The Language of Baklava, Diana Abu-Jaber documents her life as a Jordanian American through her memories of food. At different points in the novel, Abu-Jaber struggles with feeling not American enough and not Jordanian enough. In this story, the young girl struggles with not feeling Haitian enough and not American enough. Both protagonists feel displaced by having two cultures because they do not identify with just one culture. Text-to-Self Connection: When I was nine-years-old, a family friend gave my mother a portrait of me as a toddler. The portrait hung in my dining room for about five years before my mother took it down. In the story, the young girl looks at her portrait and notices things about her features and colors that remind her of her culture and Haiti. I used to feel a similar sense of sentimentality when looking at my portrait. Instead of the too-dark brown eyes and dull facial features, I used to see my grandmother's nose, my mother's smile, and eyes that reflected laughter. Other people have a way of viewing us more positively than how we view ourselves. Text-to-World Connection: In the story, Auntie Luce paints portraits to remind her of important events and memories of her life in Haiti. Auntie Luce's paintings portray the beauty and goodness in Haiti. History classes and the media do not talk about how beautiful and rich in culture Haiti is. Instead, history classes teach students about slavery and the Haitian revolution. Currently, the media is reporting that tourists should avoid traveling to Haiti because of the increase in crime. History classes and the media do not portray places like Haiti in a positive light, which is not fair to people of Haitian descent. Many Haitian Americans probably have never been to Haiti, so it is important for them to understand their culture when it is represented more positively and accurately. Abu-Jaber, D. (2006). The Language of Baklava: A Memoir. New York: Anchor Books. Latour, F., & Daley, K. (2018). Auntie Luce's Talking Paintings. Toronto: Groundwood Books.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    A bright, vibrant story on how to pass on one's culture and heritage to the next generation. The world of Haiti as seen through the eyes of a young Haitian American girl, a world that is far different from the Haiti others often chose to see. A bright, vibrant story on how to pass on one's culture and heritage to the next generation. The world of Haiti as seen through the eyes of a young Haitian American girl, a world that is far different from the Haiti others often chose to see.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Tasha

    A little girl heads to Haiti from her home in America to visit her Auntie Luce, a painter. The girl has sat for a painting year after year since she was seven and first visited. She leaves the snow and cold behind for the tropical world of Haiti with its heat, bright buses, pink cathedral and green hills. She asks her aunt why she never left Haiti, and her aunt explains that she wants to stay in Haiti her entire life and that she is simply different than the girl’s mother who moved to America. T A little girl heads to Haiti from her home in America to visit her Auntie Luce, a painter. The girl has sat for a painting year after year since she was seven and first visited. She leaves the snow and cold behind for the tropical world of Haiti with its heat, bright buses, pink cathedral and green hills. She asks her aunt why she never left Haiti, and her aunt explains that she wants to stay in Haiti her entire life and that she is simply different than the girl’s mother who moved to America. There are many things different in Haiti, including the paintings that cover the walls of Auntie Luce’s small home. The girl sees portraits of national Haitian heroes as well as generations of her own family. As her portrait is finished, Auntie Luce encourages the little girl to see herself as both Haitian and American, not one or the other. This picture book cleverly incorporates small pieces of the history of Haiti into the story line. The little girl has many questions about Haiti in particular but also about why some family members choose to stay while others leave. Small bits of Haitian life are also mentioned, showing the differences between Haiti and America very clearly. The book also looks at art and the way that it offers a chance to speak in a different way about difficult things. Even the paintings themselves are described in gorgeous language that will have readers seeing even more details than they might have. LaTour’s illustrations turn this picture book into a real look at Haiti through the eyes of someone who clearly loves it. The images come alive as they show a bustling street, the mountain home of Auntie Luce, and the images of ancestors and heroes from Haiti. A vibrant look at Haiti in a picture book. Appropriate for ages 4-6.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Anna Spears

    Text to Text: In the story, Aunt Luce calls the girl a variety of pet names in Haitian. This reminds me of the book Outlander where the main character, Jamie, refers to his wife Claire using a variety of pet names as well, but always in Gaelic. It's intimate in both stories and the lack of definition as to what the words exactly mean intrigued me as I read. Text to Self: When the girl is being painted and she talks about all the beautiful colors to her skin, coming from her family and how she is Text to Text: In the story, Aunt Luce calls the girl a variety of pet names in Haitian. This reminds me of the book Outlander where the main character, Jamie, refers to his wife Claire using a variety of pet names as well, but always in Gaelic. It's intimate in both stories and the lack of definition as to what the words exactly mean intrigued me as I read. Text to Self: When the girl is being painted and she talks about all the beautiful colors to her skin, coming from her family and how she is almost seeing herself and her culture brought to life in a new way. This made be think of when my little sisters (adopted from Ethiopia) traveled to visit their birth family and saw the connection and reflection of themselves in her and their grandmother. Text to World: "I don't feel Haitian enough. I don't even feel American enough." That statement resonated with me as something we frequently discussed a my multicultural liaison meetings when working with multiracial, adopted, and immigrant students. How like the girl in the story feels torn between her two worlds, but that she does not fully belong to either was a topic discussed on how we could teach acceptance in our classrooms and make students comfortable finding themselves.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    So often, we read and hear about the great poverty in Haiti, which makes this picture book a good addition to a classroom collection since it challenges those assumptions about the country. In this book, a young girl describes how she visits her aunt, Luce, in Haiti during the winter months. Her aunt chose not to leave the island when the girl's parents moved away. Not only is her aunt a painter, but she is eager to share her paintings and her perspective on the country's history with her niece. So often, we read and hear about the great poverty in Haiti, which makes this picture book a good addition to a classroom collection since it challenges those assumptions about the country. In this book, a young girl describes how she visits her aunt, Luce, in Haiti during the winter months. Her aunt chose not to leave the island when the girl's parents moved away. Not only is her aunt a painter, but she is eager to share her paintings and her perspective on the country's history with her niece. When she begins to paint her niece's portrait, she also describes how painting helps her to remember the past, the good and the bad and the ugly. Back matter includes a note that clarifies some of Aunt Luce's historical references and comments. Along with the story itself, the book allows readers to have a glimpse into Haiti from an insider's point of view while also evoking sympathy for someone who often feels culturally conflicted and as though she is neither Haitian or American.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Margaret Boling

    3/23/2019 ~ Stunning illustrations and an interesting look at Haiti from the perspective of a child whose parents emigrated to the U.S. This is definitely not a book for primary aged children, due to the length of the text and the abstract references to Haiti's history. The story grapples with some of the reasons that people emigrate or choose not to; also, the loss when families are split. I currently have two girls whose parents recently came to the U.S. from Haiti; I look forward to sharing t 3/23/2019 ~ Stunning illustrations and an interesting look at Haiti from the perspective of a child whose parents emigrated to the U.S. This is definitely not a book for primary aged children, due to the length of the text and the abstract references to Haiti's history. The story grapples with some of the reasons that people emigrate or choose not to; also, the loss when families are split. I currently have two girls whose parents recently came to the U.S. from Haiti; I look forward to sharing this book with them. Be sure to read the back matter about the author's thoughts on the Haitian revolution and win against colonial powers. (Interesting that my public library has this cataloged as jP - picture book, rather than jE which is what they usually use for for more sophisticated picture books.)

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    I learned that I have a lot more to learn about Haiti. One stunning fact for me from the Author's Note: "From the moment this Black republic was born, it was totally alone in the world. No country would trade with it or even recognize it as a nation. To get that recognition, Haiti had to sign a deal that guaranteed a future of poverty. It was forced to pay hundreds of millions to the French for the property they lost in war - an amount that today is worth about $20 billion. That lost property in I learned that I have a lot more to learn about Haiti. One stunning fact for me from the Author's Note: "From the moment this Black republic was born, it was totally alone in the world. No country would trade with it or even recognize it as a nation. To get that recognition, Haiti had to sign a deal that guaranteed a future of poverty. It was forced to pay hundreds of millions to the French for the property they lost in war - an amount that today is worth about $20 billion. That lost property included Haitians' very own bodies, which the French believed they had a right to own."

  14. 4 out of 5

    Robin

    This book made the USBBY Outstanding International Books List for 2019. It was inspired when the Haitian born author met the famous Haitian artist Luce Turner. Luce Turner painted her portrait. The artwork in this book perfectly matches the story, a story of Aunt Luce's love of her Island home and how it inspired her to paint. It is a story about a little girl getting to know family roots and hearing family accounts of historical events by the people who live there. This would make a great socia This book made the USBBY Outstanding International Books List for 2019. It was inspired when the Haitian born author met the famous Haitian artist Luce Turner. Luce Turner painted her portrait. The artwork in this book perfectly matches the story, a story of Aunt Luce's love of her Island home and how it inspired her to paint. It is a story about a little girl getting to know family roots and hearing family accounts of historical events by the people who live there. This would make a great social studies lesson or an art lesson.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Juliana Lee

    A little American girl learns her Haitian history through her Auntie Luce's paintings. Every winter she goes to Haiti to spend time with her aunt who teaches her about her personal family and country's history. A little American girl learns her Haitian history through her Auntie Luce's paintings. Every winter she goes to Haiti to spend time with her aunt who teaches her about her personal family and country's history.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Robyn Schultz (ladyrobyns)

    This is not just a story about a young girl visiting her Auntie, who is an amazing painter. It's a story about where you come from and how that influences where you are going. The art by Ken Daley is too die for! A riot of color, and texture and form. This is not just a story about a young girl visiting her Auntie, who is an amazing painter. It's a story about where you come from and how that influences where you are going. The art by Ken Daley is too die for! A riot of color, and texture and form.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Leann

    The art is gorgeous and the story has an interesting hook - the birth of Haiti, and the roots of an American girl whose family is still there - but the writing is bland and too descriptive for a young reader to get.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jillian

    This book has a lot to unpack, but it's worth it - art, history, art history, family, identity, politics, relationships, and more. It's all in there! It's a bit wordy, but it has a lot of power as far as knowing who you are and where you came from. This book has a lot to unpack, but it's worth it - art, history, art history, family, identity, politics, relationships, and more. It's all in there! It's a bit wordy, but it has a lot of power as far as knowing who you are and where you came from.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Alyssa Gudenburr

    A beautiful story about a Haitian-American girl who learns about her culture through her aunt's paintings. Shows the hard truths and the beauty of Haiti. A beautiful story about a Haitian-American girl who learns about her culture through her aunt's paintings. Shows the hard truths and the beauty of Haiti.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    This is a beautifully told cultural story of Haiti. And the illustrations are amazing.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Nadia L. Hohn

    Gorgeous illustrations. Amazing story. Rich history. An ode to Haiti.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kathy

    Saturated paintings reflect a colorful family relationship and some of Haiti's history. The story is heartfelt but there is too much small text on each page. Saturated paintings reflect a colorful family relationship and some of Haiti's history. The story is heartfelt but there is too much small text on each page.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Wendy Kuzma

    This a great story for children about Haitian history and culture.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Julie Esanu

    A love letter to Haiti...

  25. 4 out of 5

    Solange Guillen

    “To paint Haiti takes the darkest colors and the brightest ones, and all the colors in between.”

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jess Bergoine

    Summary: A young girl visits her Auntie Luce in Haiti every winter and is always comforted by the familiar sights when she arrives. One of the young girls' favorite things is to admire her Auntie Luce's paintings, which are inspired by Haitian culture. During this visit, Aunt Luce will paint a portrait of the young girl, and help her see who she is. Review: I do not know very much about Haitian culture, but this picture book highlights the beauty of this Caribbean country! The illustrations are Summary: A young girl visits her Auntie Luce in Haiti every winter and is always comforted by the familiar sights when she arrives. One of the young girls' favorite things is to admire her Auntie Luce's paintings, which are inspired by Haitian culture. During this visit, Aunt Luce will paint a portrait of the young girl, and help her see who she is. Review: I do not know very much about Haitian culture, but this picture book highlights the beauty of this Caribbean country! The illustrations are stunning, and I love how the colors are all very bright and have a warm feeling to them. This story teaches children a lovely message about embracing one's culture to find who you are. Pair: I would pair the book, "Aunt Luce's Talking Paintings," with the book, "Islandborn," by Junot Díaz. I like how both of these books are about how influential culture is to one's identity. I think children would enjoy relating this book to themselves and sharing their culture. Quote: When the young girl talks about her Auntie Luce's paintings, she says, "The paintings always talk back." I found this to be such a moving quote because that is what makes art so unique. It speaks to many people in different ways, and for the young girl, it brings her back to her culture.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Meg

    Published by Canadian Groundwood Books, Francie Latour's book is one of the 2019 Outstanding International titles. A young girl travels to Haiti to visit her Auntie Luce, who is a painter. Ken Daley's illustrations highlight the bright colors of the island. These are the colors that Auntie Luce uses in her work. The girl begins to understand Haiti when learning about the history of the county's independence. The author had met Luce Turnier, who was one of Haiti's most celebrated female artists. Published by Canadian Groundwood Books, Francie Latour's book is one of the 2019 Outstanding International titles. A young girl travels to Haiti to visit her Auntie Luce, who is a painter. Ken Daley's illustrations highlight the bright colors of the island. These are the colors that Auntie Luce uses in her work. The girl begins to understand Haiti when learning about the history of the county's independence. The author had met Luce Turnier, who was one of Haiti's most celebrated female artists. Francie Latour had her portrait painted by that artist in real life. This incident gave her the inspiration to write this story. At the end of the book, the author gives a note about Haitian history plus a glossary of native words. The ideas about identity are important ones. Knowing one's history helps create that identity. The text gives us a strong cultural story but the illustrations were a bit overboard with some stereotyped images of the characters. Students, grades 2-5, would enjoy this story.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Vernon Area Public Library KIDS

    History: Haitian revolution Tough Issue: Revolution, mixed cultural identities Every winter, Auntie Luce welcomes her American niece back to her home in Haiti. Affectionately called "Ti Chou," she fondly connects with Auntie Luce's paintings, especially portraits of herself that hold colors that she has never seen in a mirror. Auntie Luce explains that painting allows her "to remember what I've seen and heard and smelled and felt" including the past and present of Haitian life. Through a loving dia History: Haitian revolution Tough Issue: Revolution, mixed cultural identities Every winter, Auntie Luce welcomes her American niece back to her home in Haiti. Affectionately called "Ti Chou," she fondly connects with Auntie Luce's paintings, especially portraits of herself that hold colors that she has never seen in a mirror. Auntie Luce explains that painting allows her "to remember what I've seen and heard and smelled and felt" including the past and present of Haitian life. Through a loving dialogue between adult and child, Latour provides an accessible introduction to more complex issues without belittling them, including colonialism, mixed cultural identities and a feeling of being an outsider, and embracing your cultural roots. Little details about sitting still for a portrait and providing "I spy" opportunities within the artwork will help keep listeners engaged. Reviewed by: Miss Kelsey, Youth and School Services, Vernon Area Public Library

  29. 5 out of 5

    Victoria Davis

    Text-To-Self: I could see myself in this story because I use to love to go and spend time with my aunt when I was a child. I remember learning so much from her and I loved the time I got to spend with her, just like the girl in the story can remember and enjoyed her time with her aunt. Text-To-Text: I connected this story to the book Islandborn because both girls in the story wanted to know about their past. They asked the people around them for information because they were not able to remember Text-To-Self: I could see myself in this story because I use to love to go and spend time with my aunt when I was a child. I remember learning so much from her and I loved the time I got to spend with her, just like the girl in the story can remember and enjoyed her time with her aunt. Text-To-Text: I connected this story to the book Islandborn because both girls in the story wanted to know about their past. They asked the people around them for information because they were not able to remember themselves. Text-To-World: The main character said, "But I don't feel Haitian enough. Sometimes I don't even feel American enough." Her aunt replied, "Try not to think of it as one or the other, but both together." I feel like a lot of people who immigrate could also have these same feelings. I thought the way her aunt replied to her was a great way of thinking. I will keep this in the back of my mind in case I ever meet someone who feels the same way this character does.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Caitlin

    Auntie Luce's Talking Paintings is a stunningly beautiful book, Ken Daley's art bursting with color and vitality and expanding on the stories told in Francie LaTour's words. It's a magnificent piece of artistic achievement. The text pushes this book, in my opinion, a wee bit older than kindergarten. Latour builds Haiti's past and present around the story of a family trip and a painting; most of the pages are fairly text heavy, pushing it beyond the youngest of listeners, though the art may well Auntie Luce's Talking Paintings is a stunningly beautiful book, Ken Daley's art bursting with color and vitality and expanding on the stories told in Francie LaTour's words. It's a magnificent piece of artistic achievement. The text pushes this book, in my opinion, a wee bit older than kindergarten. Latour builds Haiti's past and present around the story of a family trip and a painting; most of the pages are fairly text heavy, pushing it beyond the youngest of listeners, though the art may well hold their attention. This would work as a read aloud or read along for slightly older readers, maybe first grade though third or fourth; it could also serve as an excellent introduction to Haitian history.

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