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Dual Language Program Book List

Books in our collection that support the Leman Middle School Dual Language Program

Note: Descriptions and recommended ages for all the books on this list were taken directly from and/or the West Chicago Public Library online catalog

by Alma Flor Ada
144 pp, recommended for ages 9-11
call number: SPAN F ADA

Amalia’s grandmother always makes her feel better, especially when her best friend moves faraway. She loves spending time with her, but when she passes away suddenly, nothing seems to make sense anymore. She slowly discovers that both her grandmother and her best friend are still close by–in her heart and memories.

A Amalia las palabras sabias y cariñosas de su abuela la consuelan siempre, especialmente ahora que su mejor amiga va a mudarse lejos. Después de que su abuela muere de repente, nada tiene ya sentido para Amalia. Ella descubrirá que no está sola, a pesar de no tener a su lado a las personas que tanto ama.

by Rene Almanza Silvia Dubovoy
64pp, recommended for ages 11-13
call number: SPAN F DUB

This fictional first-person narrative explores one teenager’s journey from Mexico to the U.S. as an undocumented immigrant. After a grueling desert journey and far from his loving family, Miguel/Charly must rely on others for support as he works his way from being a dishwasher to achieving his dreams as a musician and winning a scholarship to Juilliard. This thoughtful story highlights the importance of family and community, as well as the virtues of hard work.

Miguel es un adolescente de Cuicatlán que decide cruzar la frontera del norte para dejar atrás la pobreza de su pueblo natal y buscar mejores oportunidades. Acompañado por su pequeña flauta de barro se enfrenta a un destino incierto que tomará un curso tan inesperado como extraordinario.

by Fernando Alonso
200pp, recommended for ages 10-13
call number: SPAN F ALO

Although Siburgo is nearly 200 miles from the sea, there has always been a seafaring tradition among the town’s young people. When Mar and Ramón decide to get to the roots of this strange tradition, they find the key in the town’s library.

Si la ciudad de Siburgo se encuentra a trescientos kilómetros del mar, ¿cómo es posible que exista la tradición entre los jóvenes de ir a navegar y surcar los siete mares? La clave del secreto está nada menos que en la biblioteca, adonde acuden Mar y Ramón… La aventura les deparará importantes descubrimientos, entre ellos la fantástica infancia del padre de Ramón.

by Eduardo Alonso
144 pp, recommended for ages 10-17
call number: SPAN F ALO
Annotations, a lengthy introduction, and eye-catching illustrations make the Spanish classic Lazarillo de Tormes accessible to younger and/or more reluctant readers. A brief reading guide is provided at the end of the book, making it ideal for classroom use.

by Fernando Alonso
128pp, recommended for ages 11-13
call number: SPAN F ALO

Parents who seek the best for their children sometimes push them too far to achieve academic success. In a humorous way, Fernando Alonso deals with a problem most children face at one time or another: fear of failing in school.

Un profesor inseguro y un poco gafe, un papa empeñado en que su hijo sea el primero de su clase y un alumno agobiado por los deberes llevarán a Juanito a una situación muy peculiar en su primer día de clase. Las diez cucharadas en las que se divide la sopaboba nos invitan a reflexionar sobre el vínculo entre los niños y la escuela y el papel de los medios de comunicación en la sociedad.

by Julia Alvarez
192pp, recommended for ages 14-17, call number: SPAN F ALV

Apparently a typical New England teenager growing up in Vermont, Millie has never told her friends that she was actually adopted as an infant from a strife-torn Latin American country. Her life changes when she meets a family from her native country and travels to the place of her birth in search of her true identity.

En apariencia Millie es una adolescente típica de Nueva Inglaterra que vive en Vermont. Pero lo que nunca ha contado Millie a sus amigos es que fue adoptada de un país latinoamericano muy pobre. Su vida cambia cuando conoce a una familia que proviene de su país natal. Entonces decide viajar en busca de su propia identidad.

by Miguel de Cervantes
call number: SPAN F ALV

A retelling of Miguel de Cervantes’s epic tale of an eccentric country gentleman and his companion who set out as a knight and country gentleman and his companion who set out as a knight and Spain.

by María Teresa Andruetto
80pp, recommended for ages 9-11
call number: SPAN F AND

Both John and Anarina’s parents are farmers, but because of drought, cattle thieves, and even the government, they become poorer and poorer and so chose to seek a better future in the city. There, the young people meet, fall in love and marry. But tired of poverty and social injustice, they decide that the city is not the best place to start a new life.

Los padres de Juan y Anarina habían sido campesinos que, tras perderlo todo a causa de sequías, ladrones de ganado, y hasta el gobierno, deciden buscar un futuro mejor en la ciudad. Allí los jóvenes se conocen, se enamoran y se casan. Pero cansados de la pobreza y las injusticias sociales, deciden que la ciudad no es el mejor lugar para empezar su nueva vida.

by José Cañas Torregrosa
80pp, recommended for ages 13-17
call number: SPAN F CAN

Violeta experiences the pain of abuse at a young age. Her alcoholic father physically and mentally abuses her mother, making Violeta wonder of there is a better future for her and her family.
Violeta vive con sus padres en un piso pequeño de una ciudad grande. Su vida podría ser como la de cualquier niña de su edad, pero no lo es, porque cada día debe presenciar la más dura escena que se puede representar ante los ojos de un niño: ver cómo su padre insulta y agrede a su madre, ver las lágrimas de ésta mezclándose con su sangre…

by Maite Carranza
378pp, recommended for ages 11-17
call number: SPAN F CAR

From time immemorial the Omar witch clan has lived in hiding from the bloodthirsty Odish witch clan, waiting for the chosen one to arrive. According to the stars the prophecy will soon be fulfilled. Could 14-year-old Anaid be the chosen one even though she has always distanced herself from her family’s secrets?

by Ricardo Chavez Castaneda
canceled: not avail. on Lectorum
56pp, recommended for ages 13-17
call number: SPAN F CHA

Getting over the death of a loved one is very difficult, especially when the person who has died was young and has committed suicide. Written in diary form, this intimate story is harsh and painful, yet it ultimately offers a glimmer of hope. As it reveals the grief that comes with the death of a son and a brother, it also highlights a family’s struggle to overcome a dramatic loss.

Superar la muerte de un ser querido es muy difícil, pero sobre todo cuando ocurre en alguien muy joven y por suicidio. Esta dura historia, intimista, dolorosa, pero con un final esperanzador nos acerca, en forma de diario, la tristeza por la muerte de un hijo y de un hermano de una familia, pero también el esfuerzo por superar tan dramática pérdida. Novela magnífica, bien escrita, que presenta una realidad dura: la pérdida de un hermano, y la visión de futuro de una niña de corta edad ante la tristeza familiar que le rodea, pero siempre cargada de esperanza.

by Francisco Diaz Guerra
150 pages, recommended for ages 13-17
call number: SPAN F DIA

In this unusual blend of Arab wisdom, Asian fantasy, and exciting mystery, an unusual character undergoes dramatic changes when a young Asian princess from an imaginary kingdom enters his life and takes control of his destiny.

by César Fernandez García
call number: SPAN F FER

Pablo está convencido de que ha recibido el ataque de un auténtico hombre-lobo. Incluso tiene alguna prueba, pero ni sus padres ni su hermana Sonia lo creen. Pablo sabe que no ha sido un sueño y está dispuesto a demostrárselo a todos. En su empeño, se enfrentará –junto con su hermana Sonia– con temibles peligros y con algún que otro miedo interior.

by Sonia Fernández-Vidal
208pp, recommended for ages 9-11
call number: SPAN F FER

Niko, a solitary 14-year-old, could never have imagined how the harmless idea of taking a different route to school would lead him on the adventure of a lifetime. He stumbles across a house he has never seen before and cannot resist going inside. He finds he had stepped into an alternate universe and must find a way to get back to where belongs without destroying the world he knows.

by Carmen Gomez Ojea
72pp, recommended for ages 10-12
call number: SPAN F GOM

Sancha, is developmentally delayed but has the gift of communicating with animals. She and a stork share their feelings of uniqueness and isolation and forge a special friendship. Narrated by the stork, this beautiful story allows readers to experience life from a new point of view, giving us a profound respect for nature, while encouraging an open-minded world view.

Una cigüeña con grandes inquietudes conoce a una niña, Sancha, discapacitada intelectual que tartamudea al hablar, pero con la que se puede comunicar perfectamente. A Sancha, le gusta mucho cantar, como a su madre. Además, cantando se da cuenta de que no tartamudea.

by Francisco Jiménez
208pp, recommended for ages 12-17
call number: SPAN F JIM

During his college years, the very family solidarity that allowed Francisco to survive as a child is tested. Not only must he leave his family behind when he goes to Santa Clara University, but while Francisco is there, his father abandons the family and returns to Mexico. This is the story of how Francisco coped with poverty, with his guilt over leaving his family financially strapped, with his self-doubt about succeeding academically, and with separation.

Durante su tiempo en la universidad, la misma solidaridad de familia que permitió que Francisco sobreviviera de niño se ve en peligro. No sólo tiene que dejar atrás a su familia para ir a Santa Clara, sino que mientras tanto, su padre abandona la familia para regresar a México. Esta es la historia de cómo Francisco se enfrentó con la pobreza, con su sentido de culpa por haber contribuido a las dificultades económicas de su familia, con su falta de autoestima y con la separación.

by Concha Lopez Narvaez
196pp, recommended for ages 11-17
call number: SPAN F LOP

Each year the shepherds lead their herds from the mountains in the north of Spain to the warmer regions of the southwest. This is the story of Martin, a young shepherd’s helper, who will make the journey for the first time. Although it is difficult for him to leave his family behind, the new experience will teach him to be brave, and lead him to find love and friendship.

¿Alguna vez nos hemos imaginado qué sienten los pastorcillos que por primera vez tienen que participar en la tarea de la trashumancia? Habrá que superar muchas cosas, como el alejamiento de la familia, habrá que ser fuerte y valiente, pero también será una experiencia maravillosa, porque allí donde surge la amistad o el amor…

by Concha Lopez
recommended for ages 11-17
call number: SPAN F LOP

In 17th century Spain, during the reign of Felipe IV, a young nobleman falls deeply in love with a lovely lady he meets at a palace ball. When he tries to find her, she has mysteriously disappeared. His obsession eventually leads those around him to think he has gone mad, but an eerie surprise awaits them all at the end of the story.

Corre el año 1635, y en el palacio Real se celebran grandes fiestas por el nacimiento de la infanta María Antonia Dominica. En una de estas fiestas, don Alfonso de Mieras se encuentra con la mujer más maravillosa que ha conocido en su vida. La joven desaparece, y don Alfonso empieza a buscarla porque la ama profundamente; pero, ¿quién es aquella mujer que se ha apoderado de su espíritu?, ¿dónde puede encontrarla? Si ni siquiera sabe su nombre…

by Pilar Lozano Carbayo
136pp, recommended for ages 10-12
call number: SPAN F LOZ

Fernando is an awkward-looking boy. His ears are a little too big and they tend to lean forward. No one’s ever teased him about the way he looks, but being the new kid in school sure is tough. A perfect story for a child starting a new grade or moving to a different school.

by Elvira Menéndez
160pp, recommended for ages 11-13
call number: SPAN F MEN

In this futuristic story, four children live isolated from the rest of the world in a city inside a bubble. Their automated lifestyle is easy and comfortable, but very monotonous. When they discover that another world exists they decide to look for a way to escape.

by Julia Mercedes Castilla
124pp, recommended for ages 10-13
call number: SPAN F CAS

On the streets of Bogotá, Colombia, four homeless boys meet a beggar, who greedily hides something in her dirty sack. This sparks the boy’ curiosity and when they discover the sack’s contents, they are astounded!

Chiquitón, Llorón, Perico y el chico-líder tienen mucha curiosidad por saber lo que guarda La Changua, una mendiga, en su bolsa. Cuando lo descubren, no pueden creérselo. Este relato nos cuenta la vida de cuatro gamines bogotanos y su encuentro con algo que nunca habrían soñado conocer.

by Silvia Molina
80pp, recommended for ages 10-13
call number: SPAN F MOL

In this sensitive story in verse, Mexican author Silvia Molina tells of a girl’s diverse experiences at school and at home. Suffering from dyslexia, young Mari is held back at school, although she excels at math, history, and other subjects. Still, her optimism never falters.

Quiero ser la que seré lo más pronto posible: bailarina, pintora, cantante… Pero como creo que nunca sabré leer y escribir ‘como Dios manda’ no pienso en ser escritora, ni historiadora, ni maestra, ni doctora, ni enfermera, ni secretaria…

by Anna Muria
192pp, recommended for ages 10-13
call number: SPAN F MUR

Nico wants to see all the wonders of his country. Readers will travel with Nico on this fantastic trip through the Republic of Mexico. A glossary of Mexican terminology is included.

Nico, un chico mexicano, viaja por todo lo largo y ancho de su país. Conocerá lugares, tierras y gentes muy diversas y el pasado y el presente de su pueblo.

by Manuel Nonídez
288pp, recommended for ages 13-17
call number: SPAN F NON

Two stories and time periods intertwine in this exciting thriller. In the 14th century, a shady character making the pilgrimage to Compostela plans to carry out a mission that will shake the foundations of Western culture; in the present, tweens Kenya and Roberto like to explore empty buildings, until they witness the murder of a well-known antiquarian. Two years later they reunite, but someone or something is following them.

Dos historias y dos periodos se entrelazan en este thriller excelente: en el siglo XIV, un falso peregrino a Compostela planea llevar a cabo una misión que hará estremecer los pilares de la cultura occidental; en el presente, los jóvenes Roberto y Kenya pasan el tiempo explorando edificios abandonados hasta ser testigos del asesinato de un anticuario. Se vuelven a encontrar dos años más tarde, pero algo o alguien los está persigiuiendo.

by Rodolfo G. Otero
call number: SPAN F OTE
Five brothers and sisters begin a happy trip across the pampas, but soon find themselves on a dangerous voyage across a desert without food or water.

by Benito Pérez Galdós
call number: SPAN F PER

When an ugly, orphaned girl falls in love with Pablo, a blind man, she feels death would be better than having Pablo regain his sight and discover her homeliness. Set in a small mining town, this novel examines modern industrial society.

«Marianela» (1878) pertenece a lo que Galdós llamó ‘Novelas de la Primera época’ (que comprenden obras como «Doña Perfecta» y «Gloria»). Partiendo de un caso extraído de un tratado de Psicología (la recuperación de la visión en un ciego congénito), Galdós creó una de sus novelas más famosas. La vida trágica de la muchacha Nela, fea y deforme, enamorada del ciego Pablo a quien sirve de lazarillo, es el hilo conductor sobre el que se entrelazan tres temas: la ceguera y su posible cura, la relación sentimental y la situación socioeconómica. La maestría del escritor canario se demuestra en la articulación narrativa de las oposiciones principales: belleza física y belleza moral; industria y agricultura, el hoy y el ayer; cultura y naturaleza. La relación del ciego con su lazarillo ha quedado como una de las más bellas surgidas de la pluma de Galdós.

by Enrique Perez Diaz Francisco Sole
96pp, recommended for ages 11-17
call number: SPAN F PER

A Cuban boy narrates the story of his best friend, Alain, who sets out to sea with his parents on a dangerous voyage in search of a better life. This book about the strong bonds that stem from childhood friendships describes the plight of many Cuban children like Alain.

El protagonista de esta historia nos cuenta cómo Alain, su mejor amigo, ha sido llevado muy lejos por sus padres a una peligrosa aventura en un mar lleno de olas embravecidas y otros peligros semejantes. Pero esta es también la historia de muchos niños cubanos, víctimas, desde hace décadas, del enfrentamiento entre una islita y un poderoso imperio

by Horacio Quiroga
126pp, recommended for ages 11-17
call number: SPAN F QUI

This edition of the classic collection by a master short story writer will pull readers into the fascinating world of the jungle. Easy-to-read type and light black-and-white illustrations make this volume an ideal introduction to the work of the great Uruguayan author.

La selva es el escenario y personaje omnipresente de estos cuentos. La selva tropical, con su violencia natural incontenible, frente al hombre, aliado a veces, destructor las más, de esa naturaleza salvaje. Y en medioo, la fauna: desde la gigantesca serpiente que declara la guerra al hombre, hasta el indefenso cachorro muerto equivocadamente por la mano de su propio amo. Este volumen recoge los ocho Cuentos de la Selva propiamente dichos y una selección de otros siete de idéntica ambientación. Humor y tragedia se combinan eficazmente en ellos, dando como resultado ejemplos antológicos de ese difícil arte que es el cuento, en el que Quiroga se reveló auténtico maestro.

by Marta Rivera Ferner
call number: SPANISH 985.019 RIV

by Paloma Sanchez Ibarzabal
120pp, recommended for ages 9-11
call number: SPAN F SAN

After being ill for some time, Mirna finally leaves her house and takes a walk. All of a sudden, she bumps into something in the fog. It’s a boy without a name or parents! She takes him home and together the two of them learn to overcome difficulties and find happiness. This touching story, with its healthy dose of fantasy, was a runner-up for the prestigious Leer es Vivir Prize in 2013.

by Jordi Sierra i Fabra
194pp, recommended for ages 11-13
call number: SPAN F SIE

Ideal for classroom discussion, this novel is set in a country ruled by a cruel dictator. Mistrust abounds. Daniel’s father is a political prisoner. His mother is forced to take in a boarder named Victor. Daniel begins to wonder why Victor spends so much time locked in his room. Eventually, Daniel learns his secret.

by Jordi Sierra i Fabra
320pp, recommended for ages 12-17
call number: SPAN F SIE

Ismael, Elías, Jorge, and Tomás have been given the gift of a wild imagination that takes them to fantastic lands where they fight incredible battles and lead extraordinary lives. Readers will be so enthralled by these realistic adventures that they will have a hard time believing they are not real.

by Gary Soto
164 pages, recommended for ages 10-17
call number: SPAN F SOT

In this sequel to Taking Sides, Lincoln and his barrio brother Tony Contreras are invited to Japan as exchange students. During their stay, they learn about their own dual identity as Mexican-Americans, family closeness, and the universal nature of hard work.

by Gary Soto
146pp, recommended for ages 11-17
call number: SPAN F SOT

With sensitivity and striking realism, Gary Soto tells the story of Lincoln Mendoza, a high school basketball player who makes the great leap from the barrio to the suburbs. The transition is a difficult one for Lincoln, whose allegiance to his new team conflicts with his loyalty to his former school and the life he has left behind. When the two teams play one another, Lincoln’s divided loyalties must be resolved.