Child of the Flower-Song People: Luz Jiménez, Daughter of the Nahua

Abrams. Aug. 2021. 48p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781419740206.
Gr 1-5–The moving story of one of the biggest cultural influences on Mexican culture. Luz Jiménez loves learning about her Nahua culture—from traditional weaving and cooking to the beautiful stories told by the fire. And even though it means wearing strange European-style clothes, she also loves going to school. Jiménez is sure there’s a way to combine her love of her Nahua culture and her growing passion to teach, until the Mexican revolution changes everything. In the aftermath of war, the subject and her family struggle to find their way in Mexico City, until she finds a solution that could save her family and the story of her people. The straightforward text belies a complicated story about the devastating effects of colonization on an Indigenous culture and the complex ways that Jiménez had an immeasurable impact on contemporary Mexican culture. Tonatiuh’s beautiful pre-Columbian illustrations provide a vivid play-by-play of events and evoke Jiménez’s ultimate impact on the art world. An author’s note gives more historical context, and a time line, glossary, and bibliography make this a valuable source for student researchers. Missing are examples of some of the art Jiménez inspired, but students reading this will be impulsed to find those on their own.
VERDICT Essential reading about the impacts of colonialism for public and school libraries.

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