Confetti Girl
Confetti Girl

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Annotation: After the death of her mother, Texas sixth-grader Lina's grades and mood drop as she watches her father lose himself more and more in books, while her best friend uses Lina as an excuse to secretly meet her boyfriend.
Catalog Number: #50916
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Common Core/STEAM: Common Core Common Core
Copyright Date: 2009
Edition Date: 2010
Pages: 198 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-316-02956-4 Perma-Bound: 0-605-49806-7
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-316-02956-8 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-49806-8
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2008032819
Dimensions: 20 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Living in Corpus Christi, Texas, sixth-grader Lina Flores, along with her father, is trying to put her life back together following her mother's death. To divert herself, she and her best friend, Vanessa, write Vanessa's recently divorced mom love poems under the name Silver Fox. Meanwhile, the girls have romances of their own; Lina has set her heart on a classmate with a speech impediment, while Vanessa sneaks around with her boyfriend to evade her disapproving mother. Misunderstandings abound when Lina reacts to her father's seeming absence, as well as her own grief, by doing poorly in school, but fortunately a supportive counselor helps pull her through. López effectively portrays the Texas setting and the characters' Latino heritage; Vanessa's mother deals with her divorce by obsessively making Mexican cascarones nfetti-filled eggshells d Spanish is sprinkled throughout. This debut novel puts at its center a likable girl facing realistic problems on her own terms.
Horn Book
Since her mother's unexpected death, Texas middle schooler Lina has had a lot to cope with: a distracted dad, boyfriend-preoccupied best friend, her own new beau, and a failing grade that's keeping her from playing sports. Encouraged by the guidance of dichos (Spanish-language proverbs), Lina realizes that she needs to let her feelings out. Lina is a sympathetic and realistic character.
Kirkus Reviews
Apolonia "Lina" Flores loves science and mathematical riddles, playing volleyball and collecting extravagant, romantic and lonely socks. But after the sudden death of her mother, her world in Corpus Christi, Texas, makes no sense: Her kind but distant English-teacher father has filled the house with books, and her best friend, Vanessa, has problems of her own. Vanessa's parents have divorced and her mother spends her days making cascarones , a traditional Mexican good-luck craft made of eggshells and filled with confetti, which become the book's central metaphor. Lina's frustration grows as she discovers the vicissitudes of the first love and that happiness can be as fragile as an eggshell. An appealing coming-of-age novel set in a traditional Mexican-American town, in which Hispanic teachers, students and parents celebrate traditional American holidays such as Thanksgiving alongside such traditional Mexican observances as el Dia de los Muertos and a Quinceanera . Local idioms of Spanish proverbs— dichos —used as chapter headings enlighten both characters and readers. (glossary) (Fiction. 8-12)
Publishers Weekly

Apolonia “Lina” Flores is a brave Latina girl trying to restore her life in Corpus Christi, Tex., after her mother's death. Her dad is a single-minded English teacher and bibliophile who has withdrawn to the point of disappearance since the tragedy (“Sometimes when I dream about him, I see a body, a neck, and a book where his face should be,” Lina says). Despite her frustrations with her father, sixth-grader Lina is determined to create her own world of fun. “People who think socks are just for feet have no imagination,” she says (she collects them and uses them for “coasters, bookmarks, wallets, and dusters”). Alongside Vanessa (her “best friend since forever”), Lina gains confidence by playing sports and relying on her own ingenuity (she dresses up as “red tide” one Halloween). The story is saturated with Spanish traditions, such as the making of “cascarones” (confetti-filled eggs), and the chapters begin with “dichos,” truisms that help Lina feel connected to her mother. Employing lovely metaphors and realistic dialogue, adult author López (Sofia's Saints) delicately displays the power of optimism and innovation during difficult times. Ages 8–12. (June)

School Library Journal
Gr 4-8 Lina attends middle school in Corpus Cristi, TX, has a crush on classmate Luís, loves science and sports, and has a sock obsession as a result of her pants never being long enough for her tall body. Her best friend, Vanessa Cantu, lives across the street with her mother, who is still bitter about a divorce that happened a few years earlier. Linas mother died last year, and her father is still grieving but struggling to live up to his responsibilities. Dichos , Spanish sayings or proverbs, are translated at the top of every chapter. Spanish phrases are sprinkled throughout the text, reflecting Linas bilingual community. The budding romance, and typical middle school events such as detention, lunchroom disasters, and reports, keep things moving. Lina is essentially a sunny, happy child and her sadness and anger are more blips on the radar than real angst. A subplot about Luíss stuttering seems extraneous. Quite typical in characters, plot, and style, this story is most notable for its casual introduction to Spanish language and culture, overtly accessible to all. Carol A. Edwards, Denver Public Library
Word Count: 41,839
Reading Level: 4.1
Interest Level: 4-7
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 4.1 / points: 6.0 / quiz: 130486 / grade: Middle Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:3.8 / points:11.0 / quiz:Q48172
Lexile: 660L
Guided Reading Level: V
Fountas & Pinnell: V

Apolonia "Lina" <ST1:PLACE w:st="on">Flores</ST1:PLACE> is a sock enthusiast, a volleyball player, a science lover, and a girl who's just looking for answers. Even though her house is crammed full of books (her dad's a bibliophile), she's having trouble figuring out some very big questions, like why her dad seems to care about books more than her, why her best friend's divorced mom is obsessed with making cascarones (hollowed eggshells filled with colorful confetti), and, most of all, why her mom died last year. Like colors in cascarones, Lina's life is a rainbow of people, interests, and unexpected changes.

In her first novel for young readers, Diana López creates a clever and honest story about a young <ST1:CITY w:st="on"><ST1:PLACE w:st="on">Latina</ST1:PLACE></ST1:CITY> girl navigating growing pains in her South Texan city.

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