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Del Sol Books provides the best Spanish/English/Bilingual Children's Books/CDs/DVDs, featuring Alma Flor Ada, F. Isabel Campoy, and Suni Paz

Alma Flor AdaAuthor : Alma Flor Ada, Illustrator : Reg Cartwright
2nd Grade and Up

The Three Golden Oranges

Del Sol Books, Get The Complete SetThe Three Golden Oranges, Hardcover, English, Book, Alma Flor Ada, Reg Cartwright, 2nd Grade and Up, 9780689807756, $17.99

$202.68 for the Story Collection Green Books and CDs English Set, Including 20%-Off, Free Shipping, and No Sales Tax : 10 Hardcover English Books, 5 Softcover English Books, 1 English Storytelling CD, and 1 Bilingual Storytelling CD

Ray, Del Sol Books


A poetic and magical retelling of a traditional Spanish folkltale that celebrates a spirit of cooperation and brotherly love. The inspiring illustrations are by Reg Cartwright.

Author’s Note : The Spanish folklore is abundant in wonderful tales, as diverse as the country from which they originate. Many of them were brought to Spain by the Arabs, who inhabited large areas of the Iberian Peninsula from 711 to 1492. The magic characteristic of the stories of One and a Thousand Nights, is somewhat present in this tale of enchantment. I’m very happy that one of my forthcoming books is a collection, written in collaboration with Isabel Campoy, of traditional folktales of Spanish-speaking countries to be published by Atheneum.

Vienna RoseListen to Vienna Rose read The Three Golden Oranges to you.  A marvelous example of the magical encounter between a child and books that we wish for all children.  And here's an earlier reading by Vienna Rose.

Publishers Weekly : Ada adds feminist panache to her retelling of the classic Spanish folktale. Mat!as and his two older brothers wish to wed, but there is not a single unmarried girl in all their lush valley. The old woman who lives on the cliff by the sea has the answer: if they travel to a distant castle, pick three golden oranges and bring them to her, each brother will have the wife he desires. But they must work together or, she cautions, "Woe to you if you do not follow my advice." Mat!as, the only one to comply, wins his destined bride, the kind Blancaflor, and she helps him to save both his brothers and her bewitched sisters. Ada's author's note cites no specific source for her retelling, but does contrast her Blancaflor tale with some of the more popular versions. As in her original fairy tale, The Malachite Palace, she adopts a straightforward, sometimes bland narrative voice ("When Mat!as... saw that there was only one orange left, he felt very sad for his brothers"). But the artwork will sustain readers' interest. Cartwright's (The Band Over the Hill) vivid and varied vignettes and spot illustrations rendered in flat, round shapes and bold colors evoke folk art while displaying a sense of life and movement. The pictures here are as succulent as the oranges themselves. Ages 5-8.

School Library Journal : Grade 1-5-In this well-known Spanish folktale, three brothers are instructed by their mother to find wives. An old woman advises them that they must work together and tells them to travel to a castle grove, pick three golden oranges, and together bring them back to her. The two older brothers, who are vain and shallow, disregard her advice and are put into the castle's prison, where they are rescued by Mat!as, the compassionate youngest son who follows the woman's directions and gets the fruit. On the way home, the older brothers open their oranges and once again find themselves in the dungeon. When Mat!as brings his fruit back to the old woman, she cuts it open and a dove flies out. Later, he removes a thorn from the bird's neck and it turns into a young woman named Blancaflor. They return to the castle and free her family from a spell. Mat!as marries Blancaflor, but her sisters refuse to marry his brothers. Cartwright's flat, folk-art style characters wear traditional Spanish costumes. The yellows, greens, and oranges in the rounded patchwork countryside contrast with the black of the brothers' clothing and bright blue skies. Full-page illustrations alternate with smaller pictures to move the eye and relieve the long text. Ada keeps the story as simple as its many twists and turns allow, but this is still a complicated tale. An author's note discusses variations of the folktale and how oranges fit into Spain's history.

Booklist : In this version of a popular Hispanic folktale, three brothers in search of brides are told by an old woman that they will each find the wives they want--if they work together. She sends them on a quest to bring her three golden oranges. Of course, the two oldest try on their own and fail, and the youngest pulls them together. In a nice twist, he is finally rewarded by a strong bride who chooses him. The text is long, sometimes too long, especially with the repetition of the pattern of three; but the telling is lively, the message is light, and the stylized oil paintings in bright colors combine magic and personality, rhythm and character, with a strong sense of drama.

Kirkus Reviews : Ada (Under the Royal Palms, 1998, etc.) reworks the traditional story of Blancaflor, taking swipes at greed, vanity, and the practice of arranged marriages in the process. Some well-traveled types help make the points: older brothers full of themselves and not above treachery; the innocent, well-intentioned youngest brother; a wise older woman; and a young woman in dire circumstances, with the moral fiber to endure. Here the story revolves around three brothers wishing to wed, and how they seek the advice of an elderly woman and then ignore all her warnings. The two bad-of-heart brothers wind up in a castle jail, and then marriageless; Matas, the pure one, liberates a family under a sorcerer's spell, gains love and marriage, and fulfills his mother's wishes. Ada invests her lengthy retelling with a quiet musicality that softens the predictability of the narrative. Meanwhile, the Spanish countryside comes blazingly alive under the bold illustrations of Cartwright's stylized, utterly transporting artwork. (Picture book/folklore. 5-8) 

Latin Baby Book Club : LBBC’s recommendation for the August Libro del Mes, is Alma Flor Ada’s The Three Golden Oranges. Ada’s adaptation of the classic Spanish fairytale is spectacular with changes to the original story line that create a tale that flows simply and beautifully.  The story of three brothers who wish to marry and set out to find the woman of their dreams, they first visit the wise old woman who lives in a cave on the edge of a cliff. Spinning her wool, the old woman tells them how to find the brides that they are seeking. Naturally, two of the brothers (Santiago and Tomás) do not heed the old woman’s advice and promptly get into trouble, but the third, Matías, follows the directions as best he can and is eventually rewarded with the apparition of the kind and joyful, Blancaflor. The two quickly return to the castle to rescue both Matías’ brothers (trapped in the castle dungeon) and Blancaflor’s mother and sisters - who, along with Blancaflor, had been cruelly transformed into an orange tree with –tada! – three golden oranges!  Unlike most fairytale endings in which the handsome prince is rescuing the princess with his extraordinary strength, agility and dashing good looks, Three Golden Oranges emphasizes the value of honesty, selflessness, honor, and dedication. When asked what type of wife he wants, Matías asks for one who is "kind, joyful and someone I could love very much" as opposed to his brothers who desire wealth and beauty. And in a novel turn of events, it is the sweet Blancaflor who chooses Matías to be her husband, rather than the other way around! Yay! Altogether what a great message…and one that I hope to impart to my own son and daughter.  Set in rural Spain, the illustrations are fantastic. Reg Cartwright does a great job depicting the Spanish characters in both their attire and features (aquiline noses are just so Mediterranean – I should know!) And his colorful, rounded artwork vividly reflects the Spanish countryside and small towns with a folk art style.  If you would like to buy your own copy of The Three Golden Oranges, please click here. Or you can follow the link in our sidebar to the LBBC’s on-line store. We have both new and gently used copies available.  And be sure to leave us a comment to let us and other blog readers know what you think about the book.  Happy reading!

Story Collection Green Books and CDs :
Abecedario de los animales, Del Sol BooksAbeceloco, Del Sol BooksAntes y ahora, Del Sol BooksAtentamente ricitos de oro, Yours Truly Goldilocks, Del Sol BooksCristina y la rana, Del Sol BooksCuentos que contaban nuestras abuelas, Tales Our Abuelitas Told, Del Sol BooksDear Peter Rabbit, Del Sol BooksEl gallo que fue a la boda de su tio, The Rooster Who Went to His Uncles Wedding, Del Sol BooksEl reino de la geometria, Del Sol BooksEl Unicornio del Oeste, The Unicorn of the West, Del Sol BooksEncaje de piedra, Del Sol BooksExtra Extra, Del Sol BooksGet Up Rick, Del Sol BooksHabia una vez en Dragolandia, Del Sol BooksLa moneda de oro, The Gold Coin, Del Sol BooksMe encantan los Saturdays y domingos, I Love Saturdays and Sundays, Del Sol BooksMe llamo Maria Isabel, My Name is Maria Isabel, Del Sol BooksMi dia de la A a la Z, My Day from A to Z, Del Sol BooksRosa Raposa, Del Sol BooksSalta Saltarin, Del Sol BooksThe Malachite Palace, Del Sol BooksThe Three Golden Oranges, Del Sol BooksWith Love Little Red Hen, Del Sol BooksUna semilla de luz, Del Sol Books

Bilingual Collection Green Books and CDs :
Canciones para el recreo, Alerta Sings Songs for the Playground, Del Sol Books
Daniel y su mascota - Daniels Pet, Del Sol BooksEl misterioso huevo de Daniel, Daniels Mystery Egg, Del Sol BooksGathering the Sun, Del Sol BooksLa lagartija y el sol - The Lizard and the Sun, Del Sol BooksMama Goose, Del Sol BooksMerry Navidad, Del Sol BooksMuu Moo, Del Sol BooksPio Peep, Del Sol BooksQuiero ayudar - Let Me Help, Del Sol Books

Ray, Del Sol Books