Region: North America, U.S.; Latin America, Mexico
Author: Ana Baca
Original Language: Bilingual: Spanish-English
Translators: Julia Mercedes Castilla
Illustrator: Anthony Accardo
Genre: Magic Realism
Descriptors: bizcochitos; butterflies; cookies; family; magic; sheepherders
Age: 8-10 years old
Benito's Bizcochitos written by Ana Baca is one mother’s tale of how their family learned about the New Mexican sugar cookie, bizcochito. Cristina and her mother are making bizcochitos for Christmas when her mother decides to tell her the story of Benito. Benito is Cristina’s great-grandfather. Benito lived on a farm and would one day become a poor shepherd like his mother and father. Saddened by his future, Benito runs away from home. He survives out in the cold for a while before an old shepherd agrees to house him only if Benito takes care of his sheep while he is gone. Angered by the turn of events, Benito runs further from home. One evening Benito almost freezes in the cold, when a larger than life butterfly saves his life. The butterfly leaves him with a necklace made of a sweet cookie he’d never tasted before—a bizcochito! Benito returns home to his family and that is how the sweet treat was passed down to Cristina’s family. This story blends magical realism and beautiful illustrations to bring an interesting tale to life. The content and length of the bilingual story would appeal most to ages 8 to 10. At the end of the book Ana Baca includes a recipe for bizcochitos in both English and Spanish.
More About This Book
Reviewed: eBook by Piñata Books (1999). ISBN 9781558852648. 32 p.
Reviewed by: Raquel Martinez