|Yuyi Morales, author and illustrator,
Just a Minute: A Trickster
Tale and Counting Book.
Chronicle Books, 2003.
When Grandma Beetle answers the knock at the door,
she finds Señor Galavera has come to take her
with him. What a skinny gentleman! she
thinks. Grandma's understatement is obvious - Señor
Galavera is a skeleton.
If his arrival seems faintly ominous, readers and
listeners quickly realize that Grandma Beetle has
no intention of going anywhere. She puts Senor Galavera
off with a litany of tasks she must complete - one
house to sweep, two pots of tea to make, three pounds
of corn to make into tortillas, and so on.
As Grandma completes each task, Señor Galavera
counts it off in both English and Spanish. Although
he's a gentleman, Señor Galavera's patience
begins to grow thin about the time Grandma's filling
seven piñatas. But by the time she gets to
the number ten, the tables have turned completely.
How can Señor Galavera possibly take Grandma
with him after he's been a guest at her birthday party?
Yuyi Morales's original trickster tale highlights
numerous Mexican cultural traditions. The vibrant
acrylic and mixed-media illustrations are a perfect
accompaniment to the lively and humorous story.