Bank Street College: Best Children's Books of the Year & Parent's Guide to Children's Media Young Adults' Choice Award
Latin America today presents a complex tapestry of native, Spanish, European, and African influences. For the past three decades, Pleasant DeSpain has explored Latin America – its landscapes, customs, cultures, and especially, its stories. Here he presents his finely-honed retellings of traditional folktales, myths, and legends from a broad array of Latin American cultures: Guatemala, Haiti, Ecuador, Peru, Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Argentina, Venezuela, Uruguay, and Chile. The fifteen tales presented here are full of compassionate souls, tricks and humor, explanations of nature and geography – and always, fine storytelling. Mario Lamo-Jiménez's Spanish translation reverberates with the rich, vibrant quality for which Latin tales are known. These animal stories are wild with llamas, jaguars and lessons for readers. Oh my! Messages of courage, fairness and resourcefulness run rampant in these folktales.
About the Author
Pleasant DeSpain Bio: Pleasant DeSpain has a most unusual but true name and an equally unusual but true profession – writer and storyteller. He travels the world collecting, researching, writing and retelling traditional tales from native cultures. Born in Colorado, he wrote his first original story at age eight. It was published as “The Mystery Artist” in 1996. Pleasant taught speech-literature-drama for six years at three universities, and wrote-produced-hosted an award-winning TV show called “Pleasant Journeys” on KING TV, Seattle. Now, the author of eighteen award-winning, multicultural story collections and picture books, published by August House, has a home in Troy, NY and frequently travels to spend extended periods of time in Thailand. Pleasant continues to travel the world having amazing adventures. While living in Thailand he has continued to collect more stories and is working on a new book.