[Monday Reading] Vamos! A Celebration Of Mexican Culture in the Little Lobo Series


It's Monday! What Are You Reading

Myra here.

It’s Monday, What are You Reading is a meme hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers (new host of Monday reading: Kathryn T at Book Date). 

Our July – September 2021 reading theme:

Binge-Read: Book Series Marathon

typorama 13

We are on the look-out for books that fit the following deliberately-nebulous criteria:

  1. Books that are part of an ongoing series
  2. Themed stories: books that are technically not part of a series, but fit a specific theme – e.g. intergenerational stories, nature-themed stories
  3. Short story collections
  4. Narratives of a similar genre 
  5. Stories written by same author

I have been meaning to share more of Raul the Third’s amazing art here at GatheringBooks, and now seems to be the best time as any to feature his Little Lobo series.

Vamos! Let’s Go To The Market [Amazon | Book Depository]

Created by Raul the Third Colorist Elaine Bay
Published by Versify (2019) ISBN: 9781328557261 (ISBN10: 132855726X). Award: Pura Belpré Award Nominee, Illustrator (2020). Borrowed via Overdrive. Book photos taken by me.

Litte Lobo and his perro Bernabe have a very important job: delivering much-needed supplies to the market. The entire story revolves around an extremely hectic day in the market that reminded me so much of my home country, the Philippines, which shares very evident cultural elements with Mexico, thanks to Spanish colonization in both countries’ early years.

The sense of place in the mercado is vivid and teeming with details that only someone who has the song of the plaza flowing through their veins can depict in such a loving tribute. I confess, though, that looking at the crowded page gives me a little bit of an anxiety, having been used to social distancing guidelines over the past going-on-two years now because of the pandemic. But, yes, this is the mercado that I know of and am familiar with, as a Filipina who has grown up in the streets of Manila.

While Little Lobo has a list of tasks that he needs to complete while in the market, he would always have time for his favourite comic books. I recall, as a child, living with relatives who has a tiny sari-sari store that sells comics, exactly in the same manner that Buho does – hanging with clothespins, and prominently displayed for all to see.

I especially loved seeing the performers joyfully dancing and making music in the plaza. How the world has changed since the time Raul the Third created this picturebook.

Vamos! Let’s Go Eat [Amazon | Book Depository]

Created by Raul the Third Colorist Elaine Bay
Published by Versify (2020)
ISBN: 9781328557049 (ISBN10: 1328557049). Award: Pura Belpré Award, Illustrator (2021). Borrowed via Overdrive. Book photos taken by me.

Little Lobo is back one year later, this time doing food delivery for his favourite Lucha Libre wrestling champion, El Toro, who is preparing for a huge event in the coliseum.

As can be seen in the image above, the wrestling team is extremely hungry and in need of burritos, tortas, carnitas, tamales, elotes, and not to forget, delicious dessert, churros! I have to warn you that you will most likely dine in a Mexican restaurant immediately after reading this luscious picturebook that was just so brilliantly executed by husband-and-wife tandem, Raul the Third and Elaine Bay.

I have heard of oaxacan cheese but naturally cannot find it here in the United Arab Emirates. Did you see how stretchy the cheese is? Yum!

And because I live for dessert, this page right here made me drool, churros being an absolute favourite. My husband makes a mean leche flan as well, which is always a hit during family gatherings. I was also very excited to find out that there is going to be a third book coming out soon! 

Vamos! Let’s Cross The Bridge (Amazon | Book Depository).

I cannot wait to join the charming Little Lobo and Bernabe on their adventures yet again. Give yourself a treat and get yourself a copy of the Little Lobo series soonest.

#SurvivalStories2021 Update: 93-94 out of target 100

September 13, 2021 at 06:30AM Myra Garces-Bacsal