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Illustrations: Very Good
Storyline: Very Good
Educational: Yes Multicultural folktales
This book retells a folk tale from Ayutla Mexico. It is well illustrated with a bit of distinctly Mexican Artwok at the front and back of book. There is a glossary with a few Spanish words used in the story, like Borreguita, which means little lamb. There is also an activities page to the back mentioning Cinco De Mayo, a Mexican holiday and giving simple directions to make a pinata (which is loads of fun).
The story is about a lamb who continually outsmarts the coyote who wants to eat her. Children enjoy the tricks the lamb plays and the long "owoooooah" the coyote lets out in frustration after each trick. Overall I found it an enjoyable tale.
If you are looking for the familiar Trickster Coyote of American folklore, you'll be quite dissapointed. As this tale clearly takes place in a farming community, coyote no longer enjoys the position of respect held in earlier tales. Instead he has gone from the intelligiant trickster, who may have been good bad or most likely indifferent to anything but his own ends, to a figure somewhere between the Big Bad Wolf and Wiley Coyote.
As an adult I find it very intersting how a societies changing values are reflected in their folktales. As I quite like wild canines I hate to see them move from respected creatures to despised. But from a child's point of view it is simply a good story, and of course an opportunity to expose children to other cultures.