Juan the Bear and the Water of Life La Acequia De Juan Del Oso by Amy Cordova, Enrique R. Lamadrid, Juan Estevan Arellano


Juan the Bear and the Water of Life La Acequia De Juan Del Oso by Amy Cordova, Enrique R. Lamadrid, Juan Estevan Arellano

La Acequia del Rito y la Sierra in the Mora Valley is the highest and most famous traditional irrigation system in New Mexico. It carries water up and over a mountain ridge and across a sub-continental divide, from the tributaries of the Rio Grande to the immense watershed of the Mora, Canadian, Arkansas, and Mississippi Rivers. The names and stories of those who created this acequia to sustain their communities have mostly been lost and replaced by myths and legends. Now, when children ask, some parents attribute the task of moving mountains and changing the course of rivers to Juan del Oso, the stouthearted man whose father was a bear.

From the mountains of northern Spain to the Andes in South America, Spanish-speaking people have told ancient legends of Juan del Oso and his friends. In this children's tale, agriculturalist Juan Estevan Arellano and folklorist Enrique Lamadrid share a unique version of a celebrated story that has been told in northern New Mexico for centuries.


...[an] engaging tale...children of all ethnic backgrounds will enjoy this story about animals with human characteristics...A good choice for public libraries that serve bicultural families, and for school libraries where folklore is part of the curriculum. - School Library Journal

About the Author

Enrique R. Lamadrid is a literary folklorist and cultural historian in the University of New Mexico's Department of Spanish and Portuguese.

Amy Cordova of Taos, New Mexico, is an artist, arts educator, and activist, renowned for her highly contextualized depictions of Latino cultures. She has illustrated over seventeen children's books and has been awarded the prestigious American Library Association Pura Belpre Award twice, in 2008 and 2010.

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Book Info


48 pages


Amy Cordova, Enrique R. Lamadrid, Juan Estevan Arellano
More books by Amy Cordova, Enrique R. Lamadrid, Juan Estevan Arellano


Publication date

30th August 2013



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