Tuesday, August 23, 2016

ADA'S VIOLIN: The Story of the Recycled Orchestra of Paraguay by Susan Hood. Illus. by Sally Wern Comport. New York: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2016. 32p. ISBN 978-1-4814 3095-1 hc. $17.99    Gr. 2-5    JUV NF 784.206

Imagine living in Cateura, Paraguay, a dumping ground for garbage from the capital city, Asuncion, and one of the poorest slums in the South American continent.  Ada Rios lived there, as had her parents and grandparents.  Her life didn't look any different, until an environmental engineer, Favio Chavez, was sent to town to teach safety practices to the gancheros who recycled materials from the huge garbage piles to earn a living.  Chavez noticed kids wandering around the streets when their parents were at work and offered them music lessons.  His initial supply of three guitars and two violins wasn't enough for the crowd that showed up, so he built more instruments from recycled materials.  The music lessons inspired the youth of Cateura to practice hard and they soon became an orchestra, playing well enough to perform at venues around the country.  The Recycled Orchestra became nationally famous and continues to improve the lives of the residents of Cateura, including Ada.  See the author's notes for more information on this uplifting story.
Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI 

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