Dona Flor: A Tall Tale About a Giant Woman with a Great Big Heart
Dona Flor: A Tall Tale About a Giant Woman with a Great Big Heart

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Annotation: Dona Flor, a giant lady with a big heart, sets off to protect her neighbors from what they think is a dangerous animal, but soon discovers the tiny secret behind the huge noise.
Catalog Number: #77971
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Common Core/STEAM: Common Core Common Core
Copyright Date: 2005
Edition Date: 2005
Illustrator: Colon, Raul,
Pages: 40
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-375-82337-9 Perma-Bound: 0-605-02135-X
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-375-82337-4 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-02135-8
Dewey: E
LCCN: 2005040794
Dimensions: 31 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
The creators of Tomas and the Library Lady (1997) offer another glowing picture book set in the American Southwest, but this time, the story is a magical tall tale. In a cozy village, Dona Flor grows from an unusual child, who can speak the language of plants and animals, into a giant, whose heart is as large as her enormous hands and feet. After ferocious animal cries terrorize the villagers, Flor sets out to find their source. The culprit--a tiny, mischievous puma, who ingeniously amplifies his kittenish growl into a beastly roar--is an amusing surprise, and Flor soothes the cat in its own language, returning peace to her village. Mora strengthens her economical, poetic text with vivid, fanciful touches: the villagers use Flor's colossal homemade tortillas as roofs, for example. Colon's signature scratchboard art extends the whimsy and gentle humor in lovely scenes of the serene heroine sweet-talking the animals or plucking a star from the sky. A winning read-aloud, particularly for children who can recognize the intermittent Spanish phrases.
Horn Book
Peppered with Spanish words and phrases, this original tall tale introduces enormous and beneficent Dora Flor, who lives in a village in the American Southwest. The plot is weak (a dangerous puma turns out to be harmless), but the cultural context is rewarding, as are the paintings, created with an intriguing combination of watercolor washes, etching, and colored and litho pencils.
Kirkus Reviews
<p>DoAa Flor, beautiful giantess of the American Southwest, is so tall she plucks estrellas from the sky and grabs snow from mountaintops to wake herself up in the morning. Her corn tortillas are so big that her neighbors use the extra ones as roofs. This gentle giant is una amiga and protector to all, so when a roaming, roaring mountain lion begins to scare the villagers, she vows to find the guilty gato. Since she speaks all languages (even rattler), she recruits her animal friends and successfully locates the kittenish culprit on a mesaa"a tiny prankster puma using a long, hollow log to generate a big "Rrrr-oarrr!" that echoes down the valley. DoAa Flor, serene as la luna, turns the roars to purrs and all ends well with Pumito sleeping atop her big toes. ColA3n's gorgeous illustrations (with his round, swirling scratchboard style in warm, buttery colors) steal the show here, as the pleasantly rhythmic but overly meandering tall tale isn't arresting enough plot-wise to avoid bogging down in its heaps of hyperbole. (Picture book. 6-8)</p>
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-A charming tall tale set in the American Southwest. Dona Flor, a giant, is a benevolent presence in her pueblo. While at first kids teased the young and large Flor, she quickly became an asset to them, whisking them off to school when they were running late or making tortillas big enough to be used as rafts on the river. The action starts when a puma is heard howling in the vicinity; the villagers are terrified and even Dona Flor can't find it. The animals know where the gato is so she follows their advice and the situation is delightfully resolved. Colon uses his signature mix of watercolor washes, etching, and litho pencils for the art. There is great texture and movement on each page in the sun-baked tones of the landscape. With Spanish words peppered throughout, this is a welcome entry to the canon that includes other heroines like Sally Ann Thunder and Thunder Rose.-Linda M. Kenton, San Rafael Public Library, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Word Count: 1,530
Reading Level: 4.2
Interest Level: K-3
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 4.2 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 102177 / grade: Lower Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:3.6 / points:1.0 / quiz:Q38601
Lexile: AD650L
Guided Reading Level: P
Fountas & Pinnell: P

Doña Flor is a giant woman who lives in a puebla with lots of families. She loves her neighbors–she lets the children use her flowers for trumpets, and the families use her leftover tortillas for rafts. So when a huge puma is terrifying the village, of course Flor is the one to investigate.
Featuring Spanish words and phrases throughout, as well as a glossary, Pat Mora’s story, along with Raúl Colón’s glorious artwork, makes this a treat for any reader, tall or small. Award-winning author Pat Mora’s previous book with Raúl Colón, Tomás and the Library Lady, received the Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award, an IRA Teacher’s Choice Award, a Skipping Stones Award, and was also named a Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List title and an Americas Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature commended title. She lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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