Dolores Huerta A hero to migrant workers

Sarah E. Warren

Book - 2012

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Review by Booklist Review

Dolores is a teacher. But her students are too hungry to listen. They are too sick to play. They have no shoes to wear at recess. From the dramatic opening, Warren's debut picture book is both a biography about the activist leader and a history of the struggle for farm-workers' rights. They pick grapes all morning. They pick grapes all afternoon. They pick grapes until night. . . . But they are paid too little and shoes cost too much. The spare, rhythmic prose, well paced for read-alouds, is nicely extended in Casilla's watercolor-and-pastel images, which show the workers in the fields and struggling at home. Dolores is with them, front and center, confronting the bosses in their suits and ties, organizing the strikes and boycotts, and calling for nonviolent protest and for women's rights. For older readers, there is a long, detailed time line and a bibliography. Link this with books about Cesar Chavez and Francisco Jimenez.--Rochman, Hazel Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

First-time children's book author Warren creates a stirring portrait of activist Huerta, focusing on her efforts to improve the lives of migrant workers. In 1950s California, Huerta, then a teacher, was concerned about the welfare of many of her Spanish-speaking students. Visiting the children's migrant worker families, she learned about their unlivable wages and long hours spent picking grapes. When Huerta's challenges to the workers' bosses fell on deaf ears, she urged workers to strike and appealed to consumers not to buy grapes until the workers' demands were met. Warren writes in accessible if halting prose that celebrates Huerta's strengths: "Dolores is a storyteller. When the bosses won't change their minds, she tells stories that show why their farms are not healthy places to work." Casilla's naturalistic watercolor and pastel paintings convey the sensitivity, outrage, and determination of an activist who is still at work to this day. Ages 7-10. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 2-5-In this engaging picture-book biography, Huerta is described as "a teacher.a detective.a friend.a warrior. an organizer.a storyteller." and so much more. Warren introduces readers to the strong Latina leader, born in New Mexico in 1930, who became an advocate for migrant workers and vice president and cofounder of the National Farm Workers Association. She has received many awards, including the U.S. Presidential Eleanor D. Roosevelt Human Rights Award in 1998. In 2003 she created the Dolores Huerta Foundation, which trains people to advocate for fair and safe workplaces. Through spare, accessible text, youngsters learn about the conditions of California grape pickers in the 1960s, conditions that left workers' children hungry, shoeless, sick, and unable to see a doctor when they needed one. "Dolores is a peacemaker. She doesn't use violence to make the bosses pay attention; she grabs them with her words. She encourages the workers to use their voices, too, until the bosses learn how to be fair." Full-spread watercolor and pastel illustrations portray the desperate families, well-dressed bosses, hopeful activists, and Huerta in her myriad roles over the years. An annotated time line and "Learn More." page are appended. This inspirational story is a good choice for Latino Heritage Month and Women's History Month.-Barbara Auerbach, PS 217, Brooklyn, NY (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review

Dolores "asks each boss to pay the workers enough money for shoes and books and medicine." Warren uses straightforward sentences to explain labor leader Huerta's efforts to help farm workers and their families get a better life. Casilla's watercolor and pastel illustrations are thoughtful--sometimes to a fault, given the over-dramatization of emotion in the characters' faces. Reading list, timeline, websites. (c) Copyright 2012. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

Warren's debut provides a much-needed biography of a heroine in the struggle for migrant farmworkers' rights. Dolores Huerta, often relegated to a secondary character in books about Csar Chvez, takes center stage in this accessible story. Huerta's story begins with her realization that migrant farmworkers' conditions and pay are the root causes for her own students' poor health, hunger and lack of shoes. The author chronicles Huerta's journey by emphasizing her various roles: teacher, friend, warrior, organizer, storyteller, peacemaker, mother and woman. After Huerta fails to get the workers' bosses to improve conditions and raise wages, she organizes a strike. Eventually, her efforts help change working conditions. In watercolor with pastels, Casilla captures Huerta's strength and the resilience of Latino migrant farm works. With the notable exception of a single, stark-white offset, the text blends beautifully with the illustrations in form and substance. A detailed chronology (in which Chvez appears) and a list of books, articles and websites enrich the simple text. While the book alone will work with younger children, the backmatter makes this title an exceptional resource for both Hispanic Heritage and Woman's History months. A welcome title for children and educators alike. (Picture book/biography. 6-10)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.