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Wachale!: Poetry and Prose about Growing Up Latino in America

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This groundbreaking bilingual anthology, carefully designed for middle readers, is a mosaic of voices demonstrating the energy, creativity, and diversity of the fastest-growing minority group in America. Wachale! (Spanglish for “watch out!”) includes folk tales, stories, and poems in both English and Spanish, and brief autobiographical essays by both well-established and e This groundbreaking bilingual anthology, carefully designed for middle readers, is a mosaic of voices demonstrating the energy, creativity, and diversity of the fastest-growing minority group in America. Wachale! (Spanglish for “watch out!”) includes folk tales, stories, and poems in both English and Spanish, and brief autobiographical essays by both well-established and emerging writers representing all shades of Latinos, such as Chicanos in the Southwest, Puerto Ricans in New York, and Cubans in Florida, as well as Dominicans, Guatemalans, and other subgroups. Geared toward ten- to thirteen-year-olds, this is a window to Latino experiences north of the Rio Grande.


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This groundbreaking bilingual anthology, carefully designed for middle readers, is a mosaic of voices demonstrating the energy, creativity, and diversity of the fastest-growing minority group in America. Wachale! (Spanglish for “watch out!”) includes folk tales, stories, and poems in both English and Spanish, and brief autobiographical essays by both well-established and e This groundbreaking bilingual anthology, carefully designed for middle readers, is a mosaic of voices demonstrating the energy, creativity, and diversity of the fastest-growing minority group in America. Wachale! (Spanglish for “watch out!”) includes folk tales, stories, and poems in both English and Spanish, and brief autobiographical essays by both well-established and emerging writers representing all shades of Latinos, such as Chicanos in the Southwest, Puerto Ricans in New York, and Cubans in Florida, as well as Dominicans, Guatemalans, and other subgroups. Geared toward ten- to thirteen-year-olds, this is a window to Latino experiences north of the Rio Grande.

30 review for Wachale!: Poetry and Prose about Growing Up Latino in America

  1. 4 out of 5

    Steph

    In order for me to begin the review, I have to mark this book as read, even though I haven't even read the first page. So this review will be a review-as-I-read type of review. "Jackson The Bag" by Rosaura Sanchez and translated by Beatrice Pita The repetition of the work, the repetition. Repeat and repeat. That's line work, right? "Hey, honey, you're doing O.K. for a starter" (6). What's to excel at? Chopping and chopping? Chopping fast is better than OK? Does chopping faster make the food taste In order for me to begin the review, I have to mark this book as read, even though I haven't even read the first page. So this review will be a review-as-I-read type of review. "Jackson The Bag" by Rosaura Sanchez and translated by Beatrice Pita The repetition of the work, the repetition. Repeat and repeat. That's line work, right? "Hey, honey, you're doing O.K. for a starter" (6). What's to excel at? Chopping and chopping? Chopping fast is better than OK? Does chopping faster make the food taste better? Curriculum Recommendation: English Department - Poetry unit; repetition, and irony Social studies unit - capitalism, repetitive factory work "Kennedy in the Barrio" by Judith Ortiz Cofer Cofer has written before of Puerto Rico's relationship with American, President Kennedy, and his assassination, but this short story is masterful. This is the short story that should be in the classroom text books! Her story ends with a community weeping and praying for the assassinated president, but Elena rejects the outpouring of community affection in a time of crisis. She rejects the "group of huddling women [who] tried to embrace [her] as [she] made her way to [her] parents" (8). She feigns a lack of hurt at the Cuban restaurant owner's mocking tone that even a Puerto Rican can become president if an Irishman can. The mocking at her expense stings though. The sting is doubled when the father chastises her for not feigning respect to a man who mocks her. And when she leaves the restaurant, returns home and gets up the next morning, the "world...looked the same". Forty years later, the experiences that Cofer has addressed in this short story still remain. Given Puerto Rico's current relationship with America, this story holds a particular power that needs a lot more exploration. Curriculum Recommendation: English Department - clash of culture, alienation, conflict Social studies unit - assassination of Kennedy, clash of culture "My Cuban Body" by Carolina Hospital Curriculum Recommendation: English Department - An excellent short story for Mass Communication (IB Lang and Lit). Here, Hospital teases out the impossibility of beauty standards that two generations of women had to survive. The mother - skinny and tall - didn't look like Marilyn Monroe. She was flat where she should have been abundant and curvy. The daughter - curvaceous and short - can never diet or exercise her body into a Twiggy-like-state. Women seem to be perpetually set up for self-contempt and self-hatred. It's an act of revolution for a woman to simply love the power of her flesh as it is. "Talking to the Río Grande" by Cecilio García-Camarillo I love love love when authors unapologetically write in two languages. I've read reviews of other bilingual works that claim this style of writing alienates the reader. Junot Diaz answers this criticism with humor: "mother fuckers will learn elvish, but Spanish alienates the reader?" A lovely apostrophe to nature. Definitely browse Watchale! for this short story! Curriculum Recommendations: Spanish - HS spanish teachers can weave this work into their geography units. Garcia-Camarillo addresses the nature of borders and its impact on the lives at the border. I guess I could make this collection of short stories, corridos, and poetry my weekend project, but I feel like I've written enough to justify to myself the five star rating. I can't believe I never came across this collection before this year. It's been in the ISD library for quite some time now, and unfortunately, I'm the first person to check it out. This will be a collection that I promote to the entire ISD staff. I hope someone else enjoys it as much as I have enjoyed it.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Fisal Ansari

    Age: Grades YA Genre: Alternative novel in poetry. Diversity: Growing up Latino in America, poems about. Illustrations: Front cover has great drawings and colors of Latinos. Personal response: I learned a great deal about Latino cultures including Puerto Ricans and Cubans and so forth. Every poem is also written in Spanish. Curricular or programming connections: I think that this book can give students in a classroom and library patrons a good idea of a Latino perspective.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Brandon

    This book did not keep my attention. I only read a select few poems, but what I read was rather dull. A lot of the poems were very long and sometimes hard to follow. What I learned from this book was that different cultures write completely different poetry. I have read American poetry and now Latino poetry, huge difference.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Judith

    Ilan Stavans wrote an awesome book titled "Spanglish." I recommend that one! This one was ...lukewarm. I enjoyed Stavans' contributions (especially his introduction; what a work-out for my brain when he kept switching languages mid-sentence!) Other than the wonderful Gary Soto, the other folks were not my cuppa tea. Ilan Stavans wrote an awesome book titled "Spanglish." I recommend that one! This one was ...lukewarm. I enjoyed Stavans' contributions (especially his introduction; what a work-out for my brain when he kept switching languages mid-sentence!) Other than the wonderful Gary Soto, the other folks were not my cuppa tea.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly Rosiles

    Wachale are the stories and poetry about some famous latin people expressinq themselves and some of the things they had to go through to get where they are. This book really gave a big impact on me because it really made me open my eyes and realize that even famous people go through some of the struggling things that we go through.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Whitney

    This book has well written short stories and poems, but it should really be called "growing up latino in the 1950s through 1970s". It just didn't feel terribly relevant for today's youth. I like that it addresses Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Chicano culture, etc. This book has well written short stories and poems, but it should really be called "growing up latino in the 1950s through 1970s". It just didn't feel terribly relevant for today's youth. I like that it addresses Cuba, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Chicano culture, etc.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Salsabrarian

    A compilation of poems, short stories, and essays reflecting the Hispanic American experience. Some poems have English and Spanish translations included. Includes the great Spanglish version of “Twas the Night Before Christmas,†“Twas the Night†by María Eugenia Morales.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Betsie Bush

    2020 Reading Challenge - Audiobook of poetry

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jacqueline

    Nice collection of material from different perspectives of the Hispanic-American tradition. The introduction by Ilan Stavans was excellent.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Cathy

  11. 4 out of 5

    Lorena

  12. 4 out of 5

    D Y

  13. 4 out of 5

    Leticia Resendiz

  14. 4 out of 5

    Michael

  15. 5 out of 5

    Dora

  16. 4 out of 5

    Mari

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Weckerle

  18. 5 out of 5

    Brian

  19. 5 out of 5

    Aida

  20. 4 out of 5

    Rosalinda Castro

  21. 4 out of 5

    Isabel

  22. 4 out of 5

    Samara

  23. 4 out of 5

    Tee

  24. 4 out of 5

    Olympia

  25. 4 out of 5

    Gsandoval2 sandoval

  26. 5 out of 5

    Katrina

  27. 4 out of 5

    A. Mindel

  28. 4 out of 5

    Philancy Monck

  29. 5 out of 5

    Marcela

  30. 4 out of 5

    Livia

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