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review 2017-09-02 12:02
Hola! Let's Learn Spanish: Visit New Places and Make New Friends! by Judy Martialay
¡hola! Let's Learn Spanish POD: Visit New Places and Make New Friends - Judy Martialay

Genre:  Mexico / Foreign Language / Educational / Party


Year Published: 2015


Year Read:  2017

Publisher: PoliglotKidz Press

Source:  eARC (Author)

 

 

Hola

I would like to thank the author Judy Martialay for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Now, I have read many children’s books that dealt with teaching children about foreign languages, but I had never read a children’s book where a term would be phrased in English and then be translated into Spanish in the same sentence and author Judy Martialay has certainly created an intriguing story that combines both Spanish and English terms in her book “Hola! Let’s Learn Spanish: Visit New Places and Make New Friends!”

Basically, this book teaches children about Mexico and its culture and language, which their language is Spanish. There is also a story woven in this book that stars a small Mexican jumping bean named Panchito who wanted to find new friends that he could play with and he ends up journeying through the marketplace and winds up at a piñata party!

What will Panchito discover at the piñata party?

Read this book to find out!
 


Judy Martialay has done an excellent job at creating a book that would help children understand not only about the language of Mexico, but about its culture as well and I have always enjoyed children’s books that try to teach children about foreign cultures and how to pronounce their languages at the same time. I had a lot of fun in trying to pronounce the Spanish verses for the English verses, such as “Hola” meaning “hello” in Spanish and “Los Frijoles” meaning “beans” in Spanish and I loved the way that Judy Martialay had the English verse being spoken first and then the Spanish translation for that verse coming right after the verse such as this phrase “Look! Miren!” as it helps children see how that English verse is translated into Spanish. Judy Martialay’s artwork is extremely cute to look at as the characters are rendered in scratchy and simple outlines and I enjoyed the images of Panchito himself as he is shown as a jumping bean who has stick like legs and a small hat that he wears in each panel.

Hola

The reason why I gave this book a four-star rating was because I felt that the pacing was a bit too slow at times and I sort of wished that the story moved at a faster pace in introducing us to the world of Mexico.

Overall, “Hola! Let's Learn Spanish: Visit New Places and Make New Friends!” is a great book for children in learning about Mexico and their language Spanish and would be a great book in helping children understand foreign languages! I would recommend this book to children ages three and up since there is nothing inappropriate in this book and the Spanish language is introduced in a way that would be easy for smaller children to understand.

Review is also on: Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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text 2017-08-22 19:57
I Know It's Kind of Early
Spain in Our Hearts: Americans in the Spanish Civil War, 1936-1939 - Adam Hochschild
The Battle for Spain: The Spanish Civil War 1936-1939 - Antony Beevor

but is anyone else doing NaNoWriMo this year?

 

I'm doing it, but I will be writing a creative non-fiction book. I spent the afternoon in a research mode black hole and have a topic and few characters to research more. My topic is Italian-Americans who fought against fascism in the Spanish Civil War, creating a separate civil war between Italian-Americans and Mussolini's Italian army helping the fascists. And I picked up Spain in Our Hearts by Adam Hochschild to help with research off Amazon for less than $6. I already had Antony Beevor's The Battle for Spain in my home library shelf.

 

Got any other recs?

 

 

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review 2017-08-14 10:12
Recomendada a los lectores fascinados por los entresijos de la mente humana y por la maldad
El poder de la Sombra: Trilogía del Mal. Libro 2: La Huella (Spanish Edition) - María José Moreno

Recibí una copia de este libro de regalo de la autora, y decidí reseñarlo libremente.

Me cuesta un poco reseñar esta novela porque no llego a ella como la mayoría de los lectores. Hace unos años (unos tres, más o menos), la autora me preguntó si querría ser lectora cero de la segunda novela de su serie. Yo la conocía de los medios sociales porque las dos escribimos y como además las dos somos psiquiatras (aunque yo siempre ejercí en Inglaterra) sentía mucha curiosidad. Le dije que no había leído la primera novela en la serie y le pregunté si eso no resultaría un impedimento, pero me dijo que eso le sería de ayuda para saber si la novela se entendía bien y se podía leer por sí sola. Por aquel entonces me leí una versión sin acabar de editar de la novela. Así que ahora no llego a ella de nuevas, pero ha pasado tanto tiempo que es casi como si no la hubiera leído, aunque tengo que reconocer que conforme leía, fui recordando la trama.

El libro se puede leer independientemente, pero como me suele pasar cuando leo aleatoriamente una novela de una serie sin leerlas todas, me quedé con la impresión de que se me escapaban cosas del personaje principal. Aunque las historias en sí sean independientes (y el caso central, de los asesinatos, sí que se puede seguir sin ninguna dificultad, aunque no se conozca ni a Mercedes, la psicóloga, ni a Miguel, el psiquiatra), el personaje o los personajes principales suelen evolucionar a lo largo de la serie y detalles que nos pueden chocar si leemos una novela sola tienen sentido si leemos la serie consecutivamente. La narración, en primera persona, casi toda desde el punto de vista de Mercedes, hace que los lectores tengamos la ventaja de saber lo que piensa, pero también implica que lo vemos todo a través de sus ojos. Está claro que Mercedes aún se está recuperando de su experiencia con un caso previo, que mencionan tanto ella como otros personajes varias veces durante la novela, y que supone una amenaza para ella que no se resuelve aquí, sino que sigue presente y angustiante al final de la novela. Parece que también se está recuperando de una relación que se quedó en nada por falta de compromiso de Miguel. Él vuelve en esta novela, y aunque Mercedes parece muy afectada y enfadada al verle, el romance enseguida vuelve a encauzarse. (A mí la parte romántica no me acabó de convencer, aunque quizás sea por no conocer los detalles de la relación anterior. Mercedes ha tenido malas experiencias en su infancia, aunque tampoco llegamos a conocer todos los detalles en esta novela, y quizás esa necesidad de amor se manifiesta en su perdonar a Miguel con tanta facilidad. O quizás sea que yo soy una rencorosa, pero vamos…). Personalmente, aunque sé que hay muchos lectores a los que les gusta la mezcla de géneros, por regla general prefiero thrillers sin romance (a menos que sea parte de la historia) y cuanto más negros mejor. Y este, en cuanto al grado de oscuridad, no desmerece.

La parte histopatológica y el caso en sí son interesantes, aunque como psiquiatra, y  habiendo trabajado de psiquiatra forense, sé que conseguir que el trastorno disociativo de la  personalidad sea aceptado como defensa en un juicio es muy difícil, y que no hay acuerdo en la profesión sobre su existencia o no (y aún si existiera, tampoco está claro que lo aceptaran como una defensa adecuada). En mi caso, las explicaciones de la enfermedad y de los síntomas me parecieron claras y convincentes, no porque yo sea psiquiatra, ya que parece que la mayoría de los lectores pensaron lo mismo, sino porque la autora consigue ese raro equilibrio entre no complicar excesivamente sus descripciones pero sin pasar a simplificarlo todo en demasía. Yo creo que a los lectores a los que les interese el tema, les encantará.

La novela es dinámica, está escrita de forma fluida, y aunque la acción transcurra en pocos días, las pistas y las sorpresas son paulatinas y nos permiten crear nuestras propias hipótesis. La historia es enrevesada y tiene de todo: asesinatos, envidia, celos, adulterio, abusos, amnesia, locura, amor… El final… Bueno, quizás hay dos finales: uno el del caso que tratamos (que sí, tiene final de verdad, no nos quedamos en ascuas) y otro es el principio de otro caso, el juego del gato y el ratón con Mercedes, que nos deja con ganas de más.

Una novela que recomiendo a las personas a las que les gusten las novelas psicológicas y a las que intriguen los entresijos de la mente humana. También hay romance e incluso algo de sexo (muy poco explícito), y violencia y maldad, mucha maldad. Eso sí, personalmente, si les gusta profundizar en los personajes y sus motivos, les recomendaría que se las lean todas en orden.

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review 2017-08-12 04:28
Aces of the Legion Condor - Robert Forsyth,Jim Laurier

Here is a concise, comprehensive, well-told story of the establishment and combat history of Germany's Legion Condor's fighter squadron component (Jagdgruppe 88) during the Spanish Civil War. Jagdgruppe 88 was the fighter element within the Legion (4 squadrons), which along with its bomber, anti-aircraft, and reconnaissance/transport units, had been sent to Spain in 1936 by Hitler to assist the rebel forces (i.e. Nationalists) fighting against the leftist Republican government in Madrid. Indeed, the war itself was to be a proving ground for Jagdgruppe 88, which had entered combat flying what was at the time Germany's standard fighter plane, the Heinkel 51, a biplane not far removed from its First World War antecedents. 

Within a few months, the Heinkel 51 was found to be inferior to the Republican fighters (i.e., the I-15 'Chato' biplane fighter and the I-16 'Rata' monoplane fighter - both of which were supplied by the Soviet Union to the Republican forces) it encountered in combat. Consequently, the decision was made to send the new Messerschmitt 109 monoplane fighter (which represented in 1936 a revolutionary leap in aircraft design) to Spain for wartime evaluation and testing. This would be done in stages over the length of the conflict. (The numbers of Heinkel 51 fighters in the Legion would be reduced, til by war's end in 1939, only one squadron would be flying it as a ground attack fighter.) Indeed, as was pointed out in the book: "The Legion Condor had played a significant role in winning Spain for Franco, and the importance of the Civil War had demonstrated the importance of air power to battlefield victory. The success of every major Nationalist offensive and defensive operation was dependent upon clear air superiority." 

Like similar books in the Osprey Aircraft Series, "ACES OF THE LEGION CONDOR" is chockful of photos and richly rendered illustrations. It will make a welcome addition to any aviation enthusiast's library.

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review 2017-07-05 23:04
Five for one
Las Armas Secretas - Julio Cortázar

I understand now why this one is classified as European lit all the time. I haven't researched it, but I'm pretty sure this one was written after Cortázar left Argentina, because the five stories in this volume are all set in Paris.

I was not that dazzled by this too much at first but then, my bar with Cortázar is "Bestiario", and that's a hard one to upstage in the wow (weird, awesome, uncomfortable, puzzling) factor.

Cartas de Mamá, leaving aside the historical parallelism that some scholar or other wants to saddle on it, was an excellent exercise on revealing the past through the present. Many authors could learn a thing or two about how to do back-story. Of course, back-story is the whole issue here: sins and regrets that turn into silences, and that end that is half fantasy, half delayed acknowledgement. And the great opening line:

 

"Muy bien hubiera podido llamarse libertad condicional."

 

Los Buenos Servicios was a very scathing look at how moneyed people use "the help", many times frivolously, and often callously, and how hollow the "throw money at it" approach is, which is more jarring  (and ridiculous) from the poised view of Francinet. She had more class than any of the cast.

Las Babas del Diablo is a POV nightmare. As it tends to happen when I read magical-realism, I enter a weird state where I'm paying close attention, but at the same time relax my mind and just go with it. Like suspension of disbelief, but I just suspend logic and sometimes even grammar. I find it pays off with many complex or weird plots, or speculative fiction too. Triggers galore in this one, and one VERY uncomfortable suspicion.

"El Perseguidor", now here is the jewel of the book, and the point where I started to love this collection. It was absolutely engrossing. I understand why it has been known to be edited as "El Perseguidor y otras historias". This one got to me, emotionally-wise, and I'm not even quite sure why. I guess it's that desperate search.

"Las Armas Secretas" you know how it's going to go almost from go. Or maybe it's that I've read enough Cortázar to understand the clues he leaves. Or, maybe more, this sense of having read one of his before, about a big house in San Isidro, that has similar elements, but I can't remember to which collection it belonged to contrast.

You know, the more I write, the higher I want to star this. I realize it made my brain jog, and my thoughts come back to it whenever I wasn't reading.

Not his best, but for "El Perseguidor" alone, so worth owning it. I predict re-reads.

 

And there it goes my 4th of July extra. I devoured it, lol

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