Imagine

by Juan Felipe Herrera and Lauren Castillo

Herrera’s journey from his childhood in a migrant family to poet laureate of... read more

Herrera’s journey from his childhood in a migrant family to poet laureate of the United States is exceptional, but here it is a chronicle of the ordinary as well as the extraordinary to inspire children to see their own potential. “If I…” he begins each reminiscence as he describes being a young boy immersed in the natural world and a loving family; as he describes saying goodbye and moving from small town to “the winding city of tall, bending buildings”; as he describes walking into a classroom speaking only Spanish; as he describes practicing spelling words “in English by saying them in Spanish,” and falling in love with the words he was learning and the sight of ink on a page; as he describes writing poems, and turning them into songs as he grew. “If I….,” he tells readers, shaping scene after scene with lyrical language, then “Imagine… imagine what you could do.” Warm-toned illustrations in pen and foam monoprint invite children into each scene. (Ages 4–8)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2019

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