Para Tio El Mio, Dice Ana Tarambana
Lauren Child. Serres, $18.5 (0pp) ISBN 978-84-95040-84-8
Gr 2-4-Rubio has produced a tour de force in this rendition of Lauren Child's Clarice Bean, Guess Who's Babysitting? (Candlewick, 2001). This book demanded much more than a simple translation, and here it receives a full cultural adaptation to reflect the trendy, breathless girl-talk of the original with accuracy. Some of the Castilian usages may be new to Latin American and Hispanic readers, but their meaning is made abundantly clear by the context and by hip and colorful illustrations. Paper cutouts are imposed on painted backgrounds along with occasional fabric swatches, creating at times a 3-D quality. The characters are cartoonlike but very distinctive. The text changes font often and refuses to stay in straight and orderly lines. The madcap story depicts the chaos created as a favorite uncle is called into action as a babysitter when a little girl's parents have to travel. The large family of four kids, one senile grandfather, and an adventure-seeking gerbil wreak havoc around the hapless caregiver until the exasperated mother returns. The well-meaning uncle is all but powerless in the face of such disorganization and general mayhem. A brilliant addition to any collection. M.O.B.
Reviewed on: 02/27/2006