Dreams of Green: A Three Kings’ Day Story

Astra. Oct. 2023. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781662620379.
K-Gr 3–Lucia eagerly anticipates the celebration of Three Kings’ Day. Worryingly, she and her family moved from Puerto Rico, which has green leaves and lush grass that Lucia could collect and put into a decorative box for the camels. Now Lucia lives in Ohio, a place with a gray sky and white snow blanketing the landscape. The illustrated settings alternate between a vibrant Puerto Rico and a drab Ohio, a contrast of bright green palms, green iguanas, and red flowers, with a variety of grays found in the icicles, frosty breath, and chimney smoke. In this bleak landscape, Lucia and her family find creativity, love, and joy to bring their island tradition to life, digging through the snow to find grass for the camels, making three kings out of snowmen decorated with headscarves and golden crowns, and filling the home with the scent of cinnamony mallorcas. Illustrations capture the magic of Three Kings’ Day, with swirling patterns matching the balmy winds of Puerto Rico, spiraling musical notes filling the living room, whimsical puffs of frosty breath wafting to the guiding stars, and the swish of a white silhouette against a midnight sky depicting kings, camels, palms, and snowy mountains. Lucia learns that traditions can cross oceans and joy can be found, even in colorless landscapes. End pages offer history and the varying ways traditions thrive in different parts of the world, including Mexico, Spain, and Puerto Rico.
VERDICT A wonderful addition to library collections.

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