Sunday, November 13, 2011

The House on Mango Street

Image credit:
Cisneros, Sandra. The House on Mango Street. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1984.

Annotation: A young girl grows up in the Latino section of Chicago who works to reinvent her self as she interacts with people from her neighborhood.

Book talk:
The House on Mango Street is not the perfect house. Esperanza is a dreamer, so when her family finally decided to get a house instead of renting, she expected one more like what she saw on TV. But alas, the House on Mango Street wasn’t that. “It’s small and red with tight steps in front and windows so small you’d think they were holding their breath.” But this is where her family is moving so this is where she has to stay. The book's series of stories shares many perspectives of Esperanza’s new neighborhood. At that house, there were some good times full of beauty, but there also were some bad times that breaks the heart. So now she has turned to writing and dreams of getting a new home, one where she can be herself. So what happens to Esperanza? How does Mango Street affect her? Does she ever leave The House on Mango Street?

Award: Before Columbus Foundation's American Book Award

A Contract with God

Image credit:
Eisner, Will. "Part I: A Contract With God." The Contract with God Trilogy. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2006. 3-180.

Annotation: Eisner’s graphic novel shares short stories of Jewish life in the Bronx in the 1930s.

Book talk:
I thought we had a bargain, God. Then why did you let my daughter die? I upheld my end of the bargain. Why didn’t you uphold yours? 

"A Contract with God" is the first story of this collection of short stories. Considered to be one of the first graphic novels, find out what happens in the stories that started the form – when a man thinks God broke his contract, when a diva says she’ll nurture a drunk’s career, when the tenants fear the super and when families and gold diggers visit the country for a vacation. Eisner tells the tales like it was and  doesn’t hold anything back.

Award: Inspired the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards.