“'There's cold chicken inside it,' replied the Rat briefly; 'coldtonguecoldhamcoldbeefpickledgherkinssaladfrench

'O stop, stop,' cried the Mole in ecstacies: 'This is too much!'”
-- from
The Wind in the Willows

Friday, November 14, 2008

Up and Down the Andes: A Peruvian Festival Tale • Illustrated Young Reader

Up and Down the Andes:
A Peruvian Festival Tale
Written by Laurie Krebs • Illustrated by Aurélia Fronty Publication: November 2008 • Barefoot Books • Illustrated Young Reader
"Up and Down the Andes, there are children just like me."
Story: Join the young narrator and six other children, each carrying a special item, as they descend from all parts of Peru to Cusco to celebrate Inti Raymi – the Festival of the Sun. Readers’ curiosity will be piqued at the mention of several parts of Peru from Lima and Lake Titicaca to Machu Picchu’s ancient sites, Arequipa, and Puno. Extensive educational footnotes -- plus a map and a "Did You Know?" section -- satisfy inquiring minds about Peru’s history, terrain, peoples, and festivals.
"Peruvian children in colorful native garb make their way to a winter solstice celebration in this glowingly illustrated book. Krebs's rhyming couplets build anticipation as each of six young travelers uses different means of transport (bus, pack animal, etc.) to arrive at the ancient Incan festival of Inti Raymi, honoring the Sun God. .” Fronty's paintings, in a warm, vibrant palette, are contemporary in their compositions but recall folk art in their flat planes and use of patterns. Tile roofs, costumes and the sun's rays incorporate repeated geometric motifs. Meaty endnotes highlight Peru's history, geography and people." -Publisher’s Weekly
Story behind the story: Up and Down the Andes is the sixth title in the Barefoot Books World Travel Series, written by intrepid traveler and former elementary school teacher Laurie Krebs. Other books in the series introduce the young armchair traveler to Egypt, Mexico, the Galapagos Islands, Tanzania, and the Silk Road. Stay tuned to see where Laurie travels next...
FYI: all the review copies for this title have been sent; please click on the "comments" link below to read what your colleagues have to say about it -- plus more to come!


momochan1974 said...

I received Up and Down the Andes in the mail today, my first Picnic Basket Book, and I am sold! This is a beautifully illustrated book that starts with a simple rhyme about children making their way to market in a variety of ways- bus, boat, mule train- to perform in the annual Sun Festival. The pictures are lush and colorful. The books starts and end with "Up and down the Andes there are children just like me" The rhythm is just right to keep even the youngest child in my school library engaged, but there is more to this book then just the beautifully simple story. After the story is my favorite part of this book because there are pages of information about the Festival of the Sun, then more Peruvian Festivals, a short history of Peru, information about the people of Peru, information about Mach Picchu and the Andes. The book ends with facts about Peru. I love books like this because it informs me as well as my students, and appeals to many different ages because of the large amount of information. This book will definitely be a five in my library!

Maura O'Toole
Library Coordinator
Mission Hill School

Ellen said...

This book came at the perfect time for my Children's Literature course - I was so excited. The information at the end of the book was wonderful and so helpful. I learned a number of things about Peru. The nonfiction at the end, paired with the poetry of the story was a great deviation from the norm.
The only thing I didn't absolutely love were the pictures. For example, one page refers to a headdress and I had to search for the headdress, as did others when I asked if they could find it.
Other than that, it was a great story about an area that should receive greater attention.
I give it a 4.5

Jeanette Larson said...

In this beautifully illustrated picture book, children travel by boat, train, mule, and other means of transportation up and down the Andes to reach the town of Cusco. There the children will participate in the festival of Inti Raymi, honoring the sun god. The double page spreads and simple sing-song rhyming text make this a suitable book for sharing at storytime, but eight pages of additional information about this Incan festival and Peru's people and history extend the book’s use to younger elementary school students. There are very few picture books that share Incan holidays or allow young readers to explore Peru, so for no other reason than that many schools and libraries will want this book. I give it a 4 for a charming story that also extends our appreciation for another culture.

Jeanette Larson
Instructor, Texas Woman's University

Mary said...

Up and Down the Andes: A Peruvian Festival Tale
Written by Laurie Krebs; illustrated by Aurelia Fronty

Up and Down the Andes is a simple, rhyming story about Peruvian children traveling to Cusco to take part in the annual festival Inti Raymi. This festival takes place each June 24 on the winter solstice, when the sun is farthest from the earth. Inti Raymi commemorates the ancient tradition of the Inca people who prayed each year for the Sun God’s return. Page by page, the book tells of children traveling from different locations in Peru to take part in Inti Raymi. Once they all arrive, the story goes on to describe the festival.
The story and illustrations alone will whet the appetites of students learning about Peru or the Incas. The pages of facts at the back of the book make Up and Down the Andes a must-have. Laurie Krebs includes details of Inti Raymi and other Peruvian Festivals and outlines a brief history of Peru and its various people through the ages. Machu Picchu, Peru’s most famous site, and the Andes Mountains, the longest mountain range in the world, are described in simple detail. Finally, Krebs finishes up with a few “Did you know?” questions.
Krebs’s experience as a first-grade teacher is evident in the simplicity of her text. Her skill as an author is evident in the thoroughness with which she addresses her subject. Krebs, an avid traveler, visited each of the places mentioned in Up and Down the Andes. Aurelia Fronty’s illustrations in vivid colors have a folk-art look to them. Fronty based her illustrations on her travels to Peru and Bolivia. Again, Barefoot Books has achieved its goal of “Celebrating Art and Story.” Up and Down the Andes is a beautiful, engaging book.
I rate this simple but informative book a five. A vital dish in every picnic set in Peru or South America.

Cynthia said...

Laurie Krebs’s seventh Barefoot Books title is an extraordinary celebration of language, color, and culture. Although this is only my first excursion into the world of Barefoot Books, I’m hooked—eager to explore more of this publisher’s list and of Krebs’s writing.

Beginning with the rich, vibrant acrylic illustrations by Aurélia Fronty—a full time painter, illustrator, and fabric artist residing in France—the reader is drawn into the world of "Up and Down the Andes" which is brought to life by the colorful paintings. The images grant the words possibility and promise without overwhelming the text. Seemingly-simple pictures illustrate a world begging discussion and further exploration, and provide a textured surface upon which to display the story.

Krebs also uses deceptively-simple and sparse text to draw in readers, yet each page presents a carefully-crafted rhyming couplet written in trochaic meter with a strong, masculine rhyme that tantalizes the ear and engages the mind. (More simply stated, each page offers two rhyming lines of text, each written in a DA-dum-DA-dum-DA-dum-DA rhythm.) The rhythm, rhyme, and meter conspire to bewitch readers and transport us fully into the story’s world. The text introduces characters from various points in Peru, traveling to Cusco to participate in the annual celebration of Inti Raymi honoring the Sun God on June 24th, the winter solstice, in a traditional Incan fertility ritual. Closing after a description of the festival, Krebs’s line “Up and down the Andes, There are children just like me” brings the reader into the discussion: In what ways am I just like the children in Peru? Finally, the last quarter of the book’s pages present the history, geography, and culture of Peru and its peoples—native and otherwise.

Suitable for lap-reading or Story Time, "Up and Down the Andes" could easily be used in classrooms. Krebs, a former elementary teacher, knows the elementary audience and has produced a book that teachers and librarians will treasure. As an eighth grade English Language Arts teacher, I can readily envision lessons in middle school history, geography, Spanish, English, and art classes; and with a little more work, the text could provide a springboard for lessons in math, music, drama, even Family and Consumer Science, computer, and shop classes. An independent school could readily devote a week, or more, to an interdisciplinary unit encompassing all classes of a grade either designed around or introduced or enriched by this particular Barefoot Book.

If all Barefoot Books achieve the goal of “celebrating art and story” to this extent, I shall become a devoted fan. Even the leaves are composed of “ancient-forest friendly,” “100% acid-free” paper, showing respect for the earth and providing yet another opening for inquiry and discussion.

The Picnic Basket rating: 5

Cynthia Winfield
Educator & Author; 8th grade English teacher (1997-2008), Ottoson Middle School, Arlington MA; author of "Gender Identity: The Ultimate Teen Guide," No. 16 in the Scarecrow Press “It Happened To Me” nonfiction series for older teens, edited by Arlene Hirschfelder (2007); MFA in writing, Emerson College, Boston, 1999

Tina's Blog said...

Up and Down the Andes: A Peruvian Festival Tale arrived just today. Since it is sitting right on my desk I have had several teachers look through it already and comment on the beautiful illustrations. My school is very diverse, so this is a great addition to our collection, especially since we have many students from South America. I love that the text is rhyming, another skill we are always working on recognizing, and the information in the back of the book is interesting to read through. This book is great to use in many different ways!
Rating - 5

Kathy Farrington, elementary school librarian said...

This is a wonderful book about Peruvian life, culture and art. This book could be used in a number of different ways for a study on Peru. Many pages name different towns or landmarks such as Lima, Lake Titicaca, Machu Pichu. The words and pictures accurately depict Peruvian modes of transportation as well as traditional Peruvian garb. The rhyming words make the reader wonder where all of the people are traveling and why. They are attending Inti Raymi: The Festival of the Sun. At the end of the book, there is a detailed description of the festival. There are also descriptions of other festivals, important historical periods of Peru, Peruvian peoples, Machu Pichu and the Andes Mountains. I would rate this book a 4 because I think it is a good resource about Peru for elementary age children but I don't think it is a book that would be checked out frequently by children because the topic is not one that is requested often.

Kathy Farrington, Librarian, Ridge Park Elementary School, Conshohocken, PA

Jennifer Koel said...

When I received my copy of UP AND DOWN THE ANDES, I was anxious to open it up and dive into it. The cover and artwork are enticing. This book is appropriate for all ages of children. The back has lots of useful information about the Andes and the Festival of the Sun. Younger children can grasp the idea of children "just like" them and older ones can use it as a springboard for geography and culture research into an unfamiliar holiday celebration. I give this picture book a 4.

Jennifer Koel
1st/2nd Social Studies
Colby Grade School
Colby, KS

Sonia said...

"Up and Down the Andes" is a vibrantly colorful tale set in the Andes mountains of Peru, that follows a group of children as they make their way up the mountains to join in the Inti Raymi, or festival of the Sun. Told in rhyme, this is a wonderful addition to any library. Following the story, there are interesting facts about Peru, it's history, festivals, and indigenous peoples. There's even a map. A fun, colorful way to learn about Peru.
-Sonia Acone
Susquehanna Community Elementary Library

ahslibrarian said...

Up and Down the Andes provides a delicious tale by Laurie Krebs seasoned with Fronty’s vibrant illustrations. A delight from cover to cover, this trek through the Andes of Peru invites readers to join in the Festival of the Sun God (Inti Raymi).
The warm tones in text and picture bring together the reader with other children as they employ various modes of transportation to attend the festival. Children are children no matter where one travels.

The amplification provided beyond the tale is much more than endnotes or a glossary. It too is a well-blended mix of text and picture that satisfies the curiosity generated by the story. From descriptions of the Inti Raymi and other festivals to a concise history of Peru, a vast amount of territory is covered in a well-organized easy-to-understand format. Much detail is also provided about culture and geography while introducing new terms to young readers such as ‘indigenous peoples’ and ‘UNESCO World Heritage Site.’
The delight of Up and Down the Andes is found in the broad audience it will find.

Younger readers will devour the illustrations and the activity of the story. Older readers will note the place names and subtle cultural practices embedded in the story. More inquisitive types will find the supplemental information offering another helping of Peru.
Classroom teachers could use the book in units on celebrations, the sun, the Incas, and South America to name just a few. School media centers and public libraries would also do well to add this versatile book to their collection.

5 out of 5

John Parker
Media Coordinator
Andrews High School
Andrews, NC

Susan Mello said...

I like the flow of this book. It makes for a great read aloud. It also introduces a celebration that may be unfamiliar to typical American students. I like all of the added information at the end. A teacher or librarian may be able to extend the lesson with these resources.

I have only 2 complaints about the book. There should be a pronunciation guide to help with some of the words. A person reading this book aloud would need to research the correct pronunciations or worse, read the words incorrectly. Young children believe their teachers know everything and may continue to mispronounce words because a teacher did. I also would have liked a more detailed (and less "cartoony") map. The children in the story travel from these places to the celebration. With a better map, it could be used to follow the children on their journey.
I would still give this book a 4 out of 5. It is colorful and inviting and informational. A great book to share when discussing holidays around the world.

debnance said...

Up and Down the Andes: A Peruvian Festival Tale by Laurie Krebs and Aurelia Fronty

We in America seem to forget there are other countries, other people in the world.

We who are teachers should not forget this.

This book highlights the Peruvian festival held each year to honor the Sun God. The pictures and text combine to give children a little glimpse into the celebration that takes place.

The pictures are vibrant and show the colors and textures of the Peruvians who attend this celebration.

The author uses a long author note at the end of the book to explain more about the Festival of the Sun, other Peruvian festivals, a history of Peru, the people of Peru, Machu Picchu, the Andes, and cool facts about Peru.

I would rate this book a 4. Most children in the US have little exposure to Peru and this would be a welcome introduction.

Debbie Nance, Children's Librarian

Anonymous said...

Hurray for Barefoot Books!

This is a delightful picture book! The rhyming text works perfectly with the subject matter and carries the reader along to the exciting conclusion. The illustrations are beautiful and the message is heart warming. It also provides plenty of non-fiction for those who want to learn more.

Bravo, Krebs & Fronty!

Picnic basket rating: 4

Mrs. Kondrick said...

What a beautiful book. Having just read the book Up and Down the Andes, I am full of ideas. What an excellent resource for our 5th graders who study Western Civilizations. The first part of the book is a beautiful “hook” enticing students with stunning images and details about children they can relate to. The back of the book is full of details about Peruvian festivals, the history of Peru and its people. As I read the “Did You Know” section I thought “about the only thing I would add is a map so I could see what they are talking about. I turned the page and… a map. It was like they read my mind. I would give this book a 5. Every teacher should have this book in their library, even if they don’t teach history.

Karen Kondrick
Literacy Coach
Ripley Central School
Ripley, NY

KelsyP said...

Up and Down the Andes is a success on many levels. The art is warm and engaging and the rhyming text makes for a great read-aloud. I like the focus on Peruvian children "just like me," which makes it easy for young readers to relate to the story. There is so much you can do with this book with children at all different ages. I have even been reading it with my 16-month old and she enjoys it! One small caveat: the final section containing information about Peru unflinchingly addresses the realities of terrorism, dictatorship, and oppression of indigenous peoples in Peru. Teachers and librarians should be prepared to answer questions about these topics!
Rating: 4.5

Librarian, Johnson County Community College (KS)

Tracy O'Brien said...

Up and Down the Andes is a beautifully written and illustrated children's book. The bright, colorful illustrations instantly capture children's attention and Krebs keeps it with her rich language intertwined with a simple, cheerful rhyme scheme. The author's use of anticipation makes this book fun to read - as each child character is introduced, the reader wonders, "Where are they all going?".

The educational information provided at the end of the story is an exceptional resource for classroom teachers and for parents. It is also clearly enough written for older children to understand. Up and Down the Andes provides young children with an opportunity to learn about Peruvian culture, geography, and history and to expand their vocabulary.

I strongly recommend this book (5).

Tracy O'Brien
Achieva Educational Services
St. John's, Newfoundland

Anonymous said...

Up and Down the Andes A Peruvian Festival Tale was a little slow. The children from the different areas are all traveling to the festival, the illustrations are dark and the poetry is not very gripping. I did find the actual festival part of the book better, more colorful and entertaining. The last part of the book contains historical data about festivals in Peru as well as historic and geographic information, I found this section very educational.

se7en said...

We totally loved this book... It has been placed in our story pile every night since we got. It is a multi-age level book... All my kids ranging from almost one to eleven enjoyed this one. There is something to love for everyone.

The artwork alone is gorgeous and we loved looking carefully at each picture to find the link to the words. The rhythmic writing is very appealing and keeps everyone focused on the build up to the big event. I loved the exotic place name on each page. Just rolling them off my tongue was fun and now my kids have a whole lot of new words in their literacy pocket too.

I thought they would think the fact pages would be a little dull and kind of an afterthought after the bright and bouncy story but actually they love them and they have to be read every time as well. The beautiful artwork keeps these pages consistent with the story. The facts are presented in an interesting way and are not overwhelming at all. Often times facts are just facts but these are presented so beautifully. The favorite fact page is the last one: "Did You Know?"

If I had to change anything I would not have left the map to the last page it is a bit of an afterthought there... when actually the nature of the story is crying for a map to trace the route - aaahhh kids love maps, esecially one with a route. I would have popped this in the front cover for quick and easy access - or even on a fat bookmark, tied to the book with ribbon, so that it could be taken from page to page.

This is really a great book and I will now look out for the others in the series. Great book a definite favorite, but not an ALL time favorite. I rank it a strong 4.

A. Hunt said...

Dear Picnic Basket, you are spoiling me with these wonderful books! Thank you for such an incredible opportunity to reviews these literary delights.

Up and Down the Andes is a beautifully written and illustrated book. I can see many uses for it in the classroom setting including having a child from Peru using it to teach his/her classmates about his native culture. The language of the book opens up poetry plus a new knowledge and appreciation for a new culture and geographical landmarks.

However, I do have hesitations about letting other teachers borrow it for their classrooms, as I might not get this gem back.

5 out of 5 yummy stars

Allyn Hunt
8th Grade Language Arts
Fort Walton Beach, Florida

Angie said...

I'm afraid I am very late in writing this review, as the book arrived just before the holidays and I let it sit on my desk for much too long. That was a mistake I have finally rectified.

The color! That is the first thing that I (and apparently many of the other reviewers) noticed. I have never been to Peru but if it is anything like Central America and Guatemala (where I have spent some time) it will fit right in. The folk style of the illustrations fit the depiction of a folk or cultural event.

Then I started to read. It rhymes! And the rhymes flow smoothly off the tongue, making it a joy to read aloud.

Then comes the added abundance of information on additional Peruvian festivals, area history, and kid-interesting "Did you know?" facts.

I've enjoyed Barefoot Books in the past. This book cements their status as a wonderful place to find books that share culture (or music) in a thoroughly enjoyable manner.

This is a strongly recommended addition to your collection ... even if (or especially if) your students have never heard of Peru.

San Antonio, TX