When I was a kid my father died so I can identify with the main character in Love, Amalia by Alma Flor Ada and Gabriel M. Zubizarreta. When her best friend moves away and the grandmother she relies on for comfort dies soon afterwards Amalia is devastated.
This book portrays the extended family interactions and Latino culture well and readers will pick up some Spanish vocabulary by reading it. The loving relationship between Amalia and her grandmother is shown in many ways throughout the book.
But the most important thing Love, Amalia has to offer is the way the girl learns to cope with her grief.
I recommend this book highly for any kid who must deal with the loss of a loved one.
While many young readers are not girls and may not have support from nearby family like she does, anyone who has suffered the death of someone they care about will be able to identify with the main character's emotions and doing so should help them cope with their own feelings.
The book will also help kids understand any of their friends who are experiencing grief.
The few questions at the end would be useful for group or family discussions or to answer in school, and the two recipes look delicious.
Many children will benefit from reading this book.