Editorial Review: "Dominicans Don't Play Soccer!" by Alberto D. Luna

 

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Editorial Review: "Dominicans Don't Play Soccer!" by Alberto D. Luna

In "Dominicans Don't Play Soccer!", author Alberto D. Luna delivers a heartfelt and vibrant story that transcends the conventional boundaries of children’s literature. This bilingual English-Spanish picture book introduces readers to Pharrell, a 7-year-old biracial boy with a Dominican father and a White mother. Pharrell's passion for soccer, rather than baseball – the dominant sport in his father's homeland, the Dominican Republic – forms the crux of this enlightening narrative.

Luna's storytelling is both simple and profound, capturing the essence of a young boy's journey towards embracing his unique identity. The story navigates the complexities of cultural expectations with grace and sensitivity, making it an excellent tool for parents and educators to introduce themes of diversity, inclusivity, and self-acceptance.

The book's bilingual nature not only broadens its accessibility but also enriches the cultural tapestry of the narrative. It encourages young readers, especially those in the 5 to 10-year-old range, to appreciate linguistic diversity and fosters a sense of pride in bilingualism.

Illustrations in "Dominicans Don't Play Soccer!" are as lively and colorful as the story itself. They vividly depict the bond between Pharrell and his father, adding depth to the tale. The visual storytelling complements Luna's writing, making the book a captivating read for children.

One of the book's greatest strengths is its ability to kick away stereotypes gently. It encourages young readers to follow their hearts and be true to themselves, irrespective of societal norms. The portrayal of Pharrell's journey in discovering the power of family and cultural pride is both inspiring and educational.

"Dominicans Don't Play Soccer!" is more than just a children's book; it is a celebration of individuality, cultural heritage, and the unbreakable bonds of family. Alberto D. Luna has crafted a story that resonates with young minds, teaching them valuable life lessons while entertaining them with a story of courage, love, and soccer. This book is a must-read for young readers and a valuable addition to any multicultural children's book collection.

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