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The Colorful World of Latino Folktales

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Juan Bobo Goes to Work

Montes, Marisa.  2000.  Juan Bobo goes to work.  New York: HarperCollins Publishers.

Summary:  Although he tries to do exactly as his mother tells him, foolish Juan Bobo keeps getting things all wrong (Verson 2000).
Type:  Realistic - because it could have happened. 
Characters: Juan Bobo - means "simple John" is very simple and dense.  He is hardworking and eager to please his mama, he just doesn't use his common sense.
Setting: The setting is established in the first paragraph, "In the highlands of Puerto Rico..."  It never really mentions a time, so I believe this could happen anywhere, anytime.  The straw hat, peasant clothes, sombrero's, and the mountains give away the Latino culture. 
Plot:  Juan Bobo goes to work each day to help out his mama.  Each day he tries to bring home his "payment" by remembering what his mama told him.  He does exactly as she says, but something always goes wrong.  In the end, he does not intentionally make a girl laugh, but her father repays him by making sure Juan and his mom has a nice ham dinner every Sunday.
Theme:  A good, kind heart always wins in the end, no matter what happens.

Rating: 5 out of 5
I really like this story!  This is one of my favorites.  The colors are brilliant and realistic looking, the background has colors that enhances the action even more than the text.  This is the type of book that could be wordless and still understood. The story line is silly, but realistic.  Wonderful story.

Additional Feature:


Here are some quotes from my students:
"It was funny and colorful."
"I like it because it has a lot of action."
"Excellent - very good pictures."
"He is just like me."
"I like how he doesn't listen."

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