“'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

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Un Pato en Nueva York • Picture book with music CD

Un Pato en Nueva York
by Connie Kaldor  translated by Yanitzia Canetti
Available now  Secret Mountain  Ages 5-7
Parents' Choice Gold Award and Juno winner for Best Children's Album of the Year -- now available in Spanish from Secret Mountain, publisher of high-quality picture books, video and music for children.
Story: A little duck from the heartland dreams big -- making it to New York City and doing his ducky dance on Broadway!  An adventurous journey bound for failure?  Not when Duck meets up with truck driver Big Betty, who tells him "yes you can" with a nudge and point in the right direction of the Big Apple.  
The original release (in English) won a Parents' Choice Gold Award and a Juno Award (Canadian equivalent of a Grammy!) for Children's Album of the Year.  This new edition, translated by Yanitzia Canetti (who also translates the Dr. Seuss books) and with songs from Ines Canepa, includes narration of the story and the title song -- plus 11 additional songs in Spanish, featuring alligators who like to waltz at midnight, and opera-singing slugs who sneak out at night to dance the boogie-woogie, among others.
Story-behind-the-story:  Connie Kaldor explains, "The idea for A Duck in New York City came to me after playing a gig in New York City while I was on my way to the airport, heading back home.   There was a lone rubber ducky on the back seat in my cab, and I just started making up stories to the driver about how he got there.   The next thing you knew I had a story and song about a little duck from the prairie who dreams about making it big on Broadway.  
And Big Betty, the truck-driver who helps the little duck, is a character that I really wanted to put in there.  She’s like some musicians I’ve met on tour:  a true road-warrior, a sister, a generous soul.  Of course, in the end, the little duck makes it to New York on his own, and goes on to have a pretty interesting life.  It beats swimming back and forth in a little pond!  When we recorded the Spanish version, it was important for me that Yanitzia Canetti and Ines Canepa capture the spirit of the project, especially the humor, even if that meant sometimes changing the words here and there.   They were both very generous and made it their own, making sure that our little dancing duck was right at home!"

Leaf through the original English version of the book, listen to 60-second exerpts of all original English recordings and read brief bios of the author and illustrators -- here!

Order your reviewer's copy now.


Catherine said...

I love this book. The audio recording really helps with the pronunciation. I loved the spanish songs and the spanish lyrics. It is a great way to expose younger kids to the language.

I rate it a 5.

Catherine Yezak, Special Education Teacher, Marquette Area Public Schools, Marquette, Michigan

Anonymous said...

As an ELL teacher I am always looking for books written in my students' native languages. This book has a great story line and wonderful message. The CD was a bonus that my students absolutely loved!

wordwarrior said...

I am an ELL teacher who works both in the High School and elementary school setting. I truly enjoyed this book. The pictures were entertaining and the songs were also well done. I have shared this book with the Spanish (foreign language teacher) also! She too is enjoying this lovely and unique book! Good Job! I will rate it a 5 and would take it on any picnic!

Jacqueline Simmons said...

This book is wonderful! My primary students love the vivid illustrations and captivating text! This book is a winner from the beginning to the ending of the book. The students loved that the duck triumphed over adversity and they are motivated to keep on trying to reach their goals! The audio CD is also a bonus and the children loved it! I rate this book 5 out of 5!!

SunshineFamily said...

I am not an ELL teacher but I do feel that it is important to expose students to other languages, especially Spanish. I love this book because the simplicity of the text is easy to follow for someone learning Spanish but the illustrations are not babyish so it is appropriate for language learners in upper elementary grades. I think the CD is excellent to demonstrate pronounciation and inflection. I would use this as a fun way to introduce Spanish and connect it to out New York Social Studies curriculum perhaps with an extension activity for students to write their own book in Spanish about our own city. In addition to the educational benefits that I and others have mentioned, the book is just plain adorable. Everyone loves ducks. 5/5

Julia Pitau said...

When I received this book, I was expecting an English version written beside it. However, it was all in Spanish. So...I began reading through the story and, even though my Spanish is very broken, I was still able to read the darling story. I really enjoyed the way the characters were drawn, especially the boxy duck. How wonderful that the duck finally acheived his goal! I believe this will make a good story for many students.

Picnic Rating: 4 1/2
Denair Charter Academy

Oligarchy said...

My bilingual Pre-K students enjoyed the book, and they LOVED the music. I am always thrilled to find another bilingual author watch for.
I give it a 5!

Anonymous said...

Perfect for our ELL students. Our school music teacher is excited to share this with students. CD is great addition.

Anonymous said...

Adorable! This is a great story with fantastic pictures! Great to use in a classroom with both English and Spanish speaking students. The audio is a great asset.

M. Battista said...

I had to ask our Spanish teacher for help reading this book, but I'm glad I did. How sweet! I love the spirit and spunk of that little duck with big dreams. The cd was an added bonus.

Picnic Rating: 4

Denair, CA