In this heartwarming picture book for young readers that highlights the special, unbreakable bond between a daughter and father, a young Latina girl named Graciela struggles to overcome her disappointment when she does not receive the birthday present her father promised to send her by thinking about what he might need from her instead. Graciela lives in a Central American country south of Mexico. Because of a drought, her father, Papi , must leave their home to travel to the United States and work on a farm in California. Graciela is sad that Papi can’t be with her at their home to celebrate her seventh birthday. But, Papi has promised to send Graciela a special birthday present tied in red string in the mail. On the front of the package will be her name: Graciela Maria Reyes Rivera. Each day, Graciela checks the mail, and each day, she does not find a present. Graciela is angry and disappointed. Then she has a thought: maybe Papi could use a gift himself.
Author Karen Stanton’s moving story, selected as an IRA Notable Book for a Global Society, features warm illustrations by Rene Moreno. School Library Journal says: “Touching. . . . a few Spanish words and phrases add authenticity to the engaging text. . . . a strong addition to the growing body of picture books with Hispanic themes and characters.”