Bibliographic Information: Morales, Y. (2013). Niño wrestles the world. New York, NY: Roaring Brook Press
Brief Annotation: This delightful book chronicles the many epic battles of Niño. This book incorporates words and phrases in both English and Spanish, as well as an excellent array of onomatopoeia, making it particularly accessible for English learners with a Spanish language background.
Genre: Contemporary Realistic Fiction/Fantasy
Grade Level: PreK-3
Readers who will like this: Readers who enjoy lucha libre (Mexican wrestling); readers who enjoy stories with action and adventure; readers who enjoy humor.
Rating/Response: 5; When I heard about this book at the Booked for the Evening event, I knew I had to read it. I adored it! The illustrations are beautiful and vibrant. I loved the combination of English and Spanish words, along with the comic-book style onomatopoeia. What I loved most, however, was Niño. Niño is exciting, relatable, and imaginative. His battles with the Guanajuato Mummy, Chamuco, and La Llorona (who is quickly becoming one of my favorite folktale characters) are all solved with Niño’s wit and creativity. The conclusion was surprising, and an excellent illustration of familial love. I adored this book, and am excited to read more of Ms. Morales’ work.
One question you would ask before a read aloud: Who (or what) do you pretend to be when you are playing make-believe?
Reading Strategy: Internet Investigations (Yopp & Yopp, 2010, p. 121)
In internet investigations, readers use the internet to research some unfamiliar terms or concepts presented in a book, with teacher guidance. The class brainstorms a list of questions they have related to the text, and with teacher guidance, generate search terms to use. Students are then encouraged to research the answers to the questions individually or in small groups, using the search terms the class generated. This would be an excellent strategy to use with Niño Wrestles the World, because of the number of concepts and characters presented that many children may by unfamiliar with or would be interested in learning more about (such as La Llorona and lucha libre).