My Name is Celia/Me Llamo Celia The Life of Celia Cruz/La Vida De Celia Cruz by Monica Brown


My Name is Celia/Me Llamo Celia The Life of Celia Cruz/La Vida De Celia Cruz by Monica Brown

This bilingual book allows young readers to enter Celia Cruz's life as she becomes a well-known singer in her homeland of Cuba, then moves to New York City and Miami where she and others create a new type of music called salsa. School Library Journal has named My Name is Celia [a]n exuberant picture-book biography ...a brilliant introduction to a significant woman and her music.


An exuberant picture-book biography of the Cuban-born salsa singer. From its rhythmic opening, the first-person narrative dances readers through Cruz's youth in Havana, a childhood bounded by scents of nature and home, the sweet taste of sugar, and the sound of music. A singer from an early age, Cruz sang so continually that one of her teachers finally urged her to share her voice with the world. Thus encouraged, she entered competitions, undeterred when her racial heritage prevented her from competing-undeterred, even, when the advent of Castro's communist regime forced her to leave Cuba as a refugee. Positive even in exile, Cruz made New York City her own and took Miami by storm. The salsa-influenced prose presented in English and in Spanish is followed by a straightforward vita of the singer, noting her death in July 2003. Lopez's distinguished, luminous acrylic paintings are alive with motion, lush with brilliantly layered colors, and informed with verve and symbolism. This is a brilliant introduction to a significant woman and her music. The only enhancement required is the music itself. School Library Journal

About the Author

Monica Brown, Ph.D. is the author of many award-winning books for children, including Pablo Neruda: Poet of the People, winner of the Americas Award for Children's Literature and an Orbis Pictus Honor for Outstanding Nonfiction, and Waiting for the Biblioburro, a Christopher Award winner. She lives with her husband and two daughters in Flagstaff, Arizona. Rafael Lopez is an award-winning children's book illustrator whose work is a fusion of strong graphic style and magical symbolism. In 2012, he won the Pura Belpre honor in illustration for The Cazuela that the Farm Maiden Stirred, written by Samantha Vamos. His Illustrations for Book Fiesta! written by Pat Mora were the recipient of the 2010 Pura Belpre Illustrator Award given by the American Library Association.

More books by this author

Other Formats

Book Info


32 pages


Monica Brown
More books by Monica Brown


Publication date

1st March 2015



We love Lovereading4kids because it promotes reading choices, new authors and a sense of community for children of all ages!

Rachel Bridgeman

LoveReading4Kids is a modern and creative way of emphasising the value and importance of books in this digital age #booksforlife

Amrit Bunet – Teen

I love Lovereading because I often never know what to read and this helps you find a good book. I have recommended this to many people.

Shannon-Louise Masters – age 15

We love Lovereading4kids because they put books in front of us we wouldn’t otherwise have read. They make us more adventurous readers!

Emily Jacques

It’s so easy to find the right book for your child. Such an easy-to-use, yet in-depth website. 100% reliable.

Pippa, Jack, Liam & Matthew Wils

I love ‘LoveReading 4 kids’ because they let you read and learn things you’d never dreamed of learning before.

Emily Horncastle – age 11

It is fantastic, you get to read lots of books and you always find something new and amazing in them.

Erica Motoc, age 7

It’s a community united by a passion for books and promoting the best there is in children’s literature.

Sam Bateman and family

Lovereading 4 schools