"Pedro" by Leo Politi

Pedro The Angel of Olvera Street Leo Politi

Format:
Hardback
Publication date:
20 Oct 2009
ISBN:
9780892369904
Imprint:
Getty Publications
Dimensions:
32 pages: 254 x 203mm
Illustrations:
full colour illustrations

This Caldecott Honor book from beloved children's book author Leo Politi, originally published in 1946, is set on Olvera Street, the site of Los Angeles' original Latino settlement, which is still preserved very much as it once was - a busy and colourful melange of small artisan shops, restaurants, and strolling musicians. "Pedro" tells of the community's Christmas tradition of the 'posada', a procession that re-enacts Mary and Joseph's pilgrimage to Bethlehem, and of the 'pinata', a papier-mache vessel filled with toys that children break open at the Posada's end. "Pedro" hopes to find a music box among the toys that will spill out of the pinata. But first, he is asked to don the red wings of an angel and lead the procession. Because he not only is costumed like an angel but also sings like one, he is asked to lead the chorus in the traditional Posada song. Music and lyrics for the song are included, and with them children may create their own Posada pageant.

Leo Politi wrote and illustrated dozens of children's books, many of which are set in the Latino communities of Southern California. He won the Caldecott Medal for his book Song of the Swallows, first published in 1948.