Reading List: Latinx Heritage Month
Latinx voices are important contributors to the fabric of American life. Spanning many countries, people from Latinx backgrounds have a rich and varied history and culture. Latinx Heritage Month, which occurs from September 15 through October 15, is when Americans come together to recognize and celebrate the many contributions of Latinx people. No matter their background, readers of all ages can learn something new about their community members through this book list. These books are specifically geared toward readers ages 8-12 and feature both factual and fictional characters of Latinx heritage. Each story reflects a piece of the Latinx community and provides a means of connection and understanding for all.
Contributed by: Mary Lanni
|Bravo! Poems About Amazing Hispanics
By: Margarita Engle
Illustrated by: Rafael López
Bold, graphic portraits and beautiful poems present famous and lesser-known Latinos from varied backgrounds who have faced life’s challenges in creative ways.
|The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora
By: Pablo Cartaya
When his family’s restaurant and Cuban American neighborhood in Miami are threatened by a greedy land developer, thirteen-year-old Arturo, joined by Carmen, a cute poetry enthusiast, fights back, discovering the power of poetry and protest through untold family stories and the work of José Martí.
|The First Rule of Punk
By: Celia C. Pérez
Twelve-year-old María Luisa O’Neill-Morales (who really prefers to be called Malú) reluctantly moves with her Mexican-American mother to Chicago and starts seventh grade with a bang—violating the dress code with her punk rock aesthetic and spurning the middle school’s most popular girl in favor of starting a band with a group of like-minded misfits.
|Lucky Broken Girl
By: Ruth Behar
In 1960s New York, fifth-grader Ruthie, a Cuban-Jewish immigrant, must rely on books, art, her family, and friends in her multicultural neighborhood when an accident puts her in a body cast.
|Maximilian & the Mystery of the Guardian Angel
By: Xavier Garza
Eleven-year-old Margarito, a big fan of wrestling known as lucha libre, begins to suspect that he has a close connection with his favorite luchador, El Angel de La Guardia, the Guardian Angel.
|The Moon Within
By: Aida Salazar
Eleven-year-old (nearly twelve) Celi Rivera, who is a mix of Black-Puerto Rican-Indigenous Mexican, is secretive about her approaching period and the changes that are happening to her body. She is horrified that her mother wants to hold a traditional public moon ceremony to celebrate the occasion. She must choose loyalty to her life-long best friend, who is contemplating an even more profound change of life or the boy she likes.
|Red Panda & Moon Bear
By: Jarod Roselló
Red Panda and Moon Bear, magical defenders of their community, battle ghosts, evil robots, alien invaders, and time portals, all before Mami and Papi get home.
|The Red Umbrella
By: Christina Diaz Gonzalez
Cuba, 1961: Two years after the communist revolution, Lucia still leads a carefree life, dreaming of parties and her first crush. But when the soldiers come to her small town, everything begins to change. Suddenly the revolution hits home. Freedoms are stripped away. Neighbors disappear. Her friends feel like strangers. And her family is being watched. As the revolution’s impact becomes more oppressive, Lucia’s parents make the heart-wrenching decision to send her and her little brother to the United States—alone. Suddenly plunked down in Nebraska with well-meaning strangers, Lucia struggles to adapt to a new country, a new language, a new way of life. But what of her old life? Will she ever see her home or her parents again? And if she does, will she still be the same girl?
|Rooting for Rafael Rosales
By: Kurtis Scaletta
In the Dominican Republic, a boy who dreams of playing professional baseball in the United States crosses paths with a young environmentalist from Minneapolis who is passionate about saving bees.
|Stef Soto, Taco Queen
By: Jennifer Torres
Mexican-American Stef Soto is hoping to break free from her overprotective parents and embarrassing reputation from her family’s taco truck business, but she soon learns that family, friendship, and the taco truck are important and wonderful parts of her life.
|Us, In Progress: short stories about young Latinos
By: Lulu Delacre
A collection of short stories featuring Latin Americans allows readers to experience life through their eyes, celebrate their victories, and see their hardships.
|What if a Fish
By: Anika Fajardo
Eleven-year-old Eddie Aguado is convinced that winning the 14th Annual Arne Hopkins Dock Fishing Tournament (once he actually learns how to fish) will bring him closer to his dad, who died when Eddie was only five.