Reviews for Confetti Girl
Booklist Reviews 2009 May #2
"Living in Corpus Christi, Texas, sixth-grader Lina Flores, along with her father, is trying to put her life back together following her mother's death. To divert herself, she and her best friend, Vanessa, write Vanessa's recently divorced mom love poems under the name Silver Fox. Meanwhile, the girls have romances of their own; Lina has set her heart on a classmate with a speech impediment, while Vanessa sneaks around with her boyfriend to evade her disapproving mother. Misunderstandings abound when Lina reacts to her father's seeming absence, as well as her own grief, by doing poorly in school, but fortunately a supportive counselor helps pull her through. López effectively portrays the Texas setting and the characters' Latino heritage; Vanessa's mother deals with her divorce by obsessively making Mexican cascarones--confetti-filled eggshells--and Spanish is sprinkled throughout. This debut novel puts at its center a likable girl facing realistic problems on her own terms." Copyright 2009 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2009 Fall
Since her mother's unexpected death, Texas middle schooler Lina has had a lot to cope with: a distracted dad, boyfriend-preoccupied best friend, her own new beau, and a failing grade that's keeping her from playing sports. Encouraged by the guidance of dichos (Spanish-language proverbs), Lina realizes that she needs to let her feelings out. Lina is a sympathetic and realistic character. Copyright 2009 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Kirkus Reviews 2009 June #1
Apolonia "Lina" Flores loves science and mathematical riddles, playing volleyball and collecting extravagant, romantic and lonely socks. But after the sudden death of her mother, her world in Corpus Christi, Texas, makes no sense: Her kind but distant English-teacher father has filled the house with books, and her best friend, Vanessa, has problems of her own. Vanessa's parents have divorced and her mother spends her days making cascarones, a traditional Mexican good-luck craft made of eggshells and filled with confetti, which become the book's central metaphor. Lina's frustration grows as she discovers the vicissitudes of the first love and that happiness can be as fragile as an eggshell. An appealing coming-of-age novel set in a traditional Mexican-American town, in which Hispanic teachers, students and parents celebrate traditional American holidays such as Thanksgiving alongside such traditional Mexican observances as el D'a de los Muertos and a Quincea-era. Local idioms of Spanish proverbs--dichos--used as chapter headings enlighten both characters and readers. (glossary) (Fiction. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus 2009 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2009 June #1
Apolonia "Lina" Flores is a brave Latina girl trying to restore her life in Corpus Christi, Tex., after her mother's death. Her dad is a single-minded English teacher and bibliophile who has withdrawn to the point of disappearance since the tragedy ("Sometimes when I dream about him, I see a body, a neck, and a book where his face should be," Lina says). Despite her frustrations with her father, sixth-grader Lina is determined to create her own world of fun. "People who think socks are just for feet have no imagination," she says (she collects them and uses them for "coasters, bookmarks, wallets, and dusters"). Alongside Vanessa (her "best friend since forever"), Lina gains confidence by playing sports and relying on her own ingenuity (she dresses up as "red tide" one Halloween). The story is saturated with Spanish traditions, such as the making of "cascarones" (confetti-filled eggs), and the chapters begin with "dichos," truisms that help Lina feel connected to her mother. Employing lovely metaphors and realistic dialogue, adult author Lpez (Sofia's Saints) delicately displays the power of optimism and innovation during difficult times. Ages 8-12. (June) [Page 47]. Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 2009 July
Gr 4-8-Lina attends middle school in Corpus Cristi, TX, has a crush on classmate Lus, loves science and sports, and has a sock obsession as a result of her pants never being long enough for her tall body. Her best friend, Vanessa Cantu, lives across the street with her mother, who is still bitter about a divorce that happened a few years earlier. Lina's mother died last year, and her father is still grieving but struggling to live up to his responsibilities. Dichos, Spanish sayings or proverbs, are translated at the top of every chapter. Spanish phrases are sprinkled throughout the text, reflecting Lina's bilingual community. The budding romance, and typical middle school events such as detention, lunchroom disasters, and reports, keep things moving. Lina is essentially a sunny, happy child and her sadness and anger are more blips on the radar than real angst. A subplot about Lus's stuttering seems extraneous. Quite typical in characters, plot, and style, this story is most notable for its casual introduction to Spanish language and culture, overtly accessible to all.-Carol A. Edwards, Denver Public Library [Page 88]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.