The Legend of the Poinsettia
The Legend of the Poinsettia

List Price:

School Discount

Discount Price:

Discount Price:

Discount Price:

Discount Price:

To purchase this item, you must first login or register for a new account.

Annotation: Retelling of the Mexican legend of how the poinsettia came to be.
Genre: Fairy tales
Catalog Number: #175251
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Common Core/STEAM: Common Core Common Core
Copyright Date: 1994
Edition Date: 1997
Pages: 32
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-698-11567-8 Perma-Bound: 0-8479-5281-9
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-698-11567-5 Perma-Bound: 978-0-8479-5281-6
Dewey: 398.24
LCCN: 92020459
Dimensions: 26 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
In this legend from Mexico, a little girl, Lucinda, is proud to help her mother weave a new blanket for the Baby Jesus to be used in a Christmas procession. But when Lucinda's mother takes ill, Lucinda tangles the yarn and is unable to complete the blanket. Feeling she has ruined Christmas, Lucinda is reluctant to go to the procession until a mysterious old woman appears from the shadows and tells Lucinda, Any gift is beautiful because it is given. Whatever you give, the Baby Jesus will love because it comes from you. Nervously, Lucinda grabs an armful of weeds, which she brings into the church. As she prays, the weeds open into dazzling red flowers that decorate the altar. The story has a simple dignity, but it is the artwork that takes center stage here. The spreads, which feature everyday occurrences (set in a generic era), are magnificently staged and colored and culminate in the last spread--Lucinda praying at a crŠche, with a profusion of poinsettias decorating the pages. An author's note gives the origin of the story as well as facts about the poinsettia plant and its Christmas connections. (Reviewed August 1994)
Horn Book
DePaola retells a Mexican legend of miraculous transcendence. Ashamed to have spoiled her family's Christmas gift to the church, young Lucida humbly gathers an armful of weeds and places them around the manger. As she kneels in prayer, the weeds burst forth in flaming red stars and ''la Flor de Nochebuena'--the Flower of the Holy Night--the poinsettia' becomes a beautiful part of Christmas. Also available in Spanish.
Kirkus Reviews
Lucida and her mother are recruited by Padre Alvarez to weave a new blanket for the figure of Baby Jesus carried in their village's Christmas procession. They take to their task with great energy, but Lucida's mother falls ill and is not able to finish the blanket in time. When Lucida tries to weave it herself, she only manages to produce a hopeless set of tangles. Ashamed that she will have no gift to give the Baby Jesus, Lucida hides during the procession; but an old lady points out to her that any gift to the child would be accepted with love. Lucida grabs a hunk of weeds and prays for the best. Sure enough, as she places them beside the figure, the weeds burst into Christmas bloom, and so the great red spectacle of the poinsettia came to be. DePaola (Christopher, p. 140, etc.) has always had a way with the retelling of folktales—getting them straight without getting them sentimental—and he shines again here with this Mexican story, as do the bold swaths of color that illuminate his painting. (Folklore/Picture book. 4-8)"
Publishers Weekly
In the tradition of his The Legend of the Bluebonnet and The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush, dePaola offers another gracious retelling of a timeless folktale. His skillfully pared-down narrative and paintings that glow with strong colors present the story of a well-intentioned Mexican child, Lucida. Distressed because she has no other gift to offer Baby Jesus, she carries into the church an armful of weeds, each of which suddenly becomes ``tipped with a flaming red star''-marking the miraculous blooming of the first poinsettias. Released simultaneously in English-and Spanish-language editions. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
ALA Booklist (8/1/94)
Horn Book (4/1/94)
Kirkus Reviews
Publishers Weekly
Wilson's Children's Catalog
Word Count: 1,227
Reading Level: 3.6
Interest Level: K-3
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 3.6 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 16727 / grade: Middle Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:4.4 / points:2.0 / quiz:Q06732
Lexile: AD680L

In Mexico, the poinsettia is called flor de la Nochebuenao flower of the Holy Night. At Christmastime, the flower blooms and flourishes, the quite exquisite red stars lighting up the countryside.

This Mexican legend tells how the poinsettia came to be, through a little girl's unselfish gift to the Christ Child. Beloved Newbery honor-winning author and Caldecott honor-winning illustrator Tomie dePaola has embraced the legend using his own special feeling for Christmas. His glorious paintings capture not only the brilliant colors of Mexico and its art, but also the excitement of the children preparing for Christmas and the hope of Lucida, who comes to see what makes a gift truly beautiful.

*Prices subject to change without notice and listed in US dollars.
Perma-Bound bindings are unconditionally guaranteed (excludes textbook rebinding).
Paperbacks are not guaranteed.
Please Note: All Digital Material Sales Final.