Mary Jan Bancroft, right, founder of Make Way for Books, uses a rabbit puppet to say hello to 2-year-old Emma Allen and her mom, Nicole Allen. The nonprofit organization provides early literacy resources for children, families and educators.

Mike Christy / Arizona Daily Star
Animal Talk: Mexican Folk Art Animal Sounds in English and Spanish

By Cynthia Weil. Wood Sculptures from Oaxaca by Rubi Fuentes and Efrain Broa. Cinco Puntos Press

Bees say bzzz bzzz in English and zum zum in Spanish. Frogs say ribbit ribbit in English and crua crua in Spanish. Oaxacan-carved wooden sculptures illustrate this 30-page bilingual picture book of animals and the sounds they make in two languages. With beautiful and playful depictions ranging from roosters to snakes, this little book is just right for interactive animal play with kids and adults.

Desert Dark

By Sonja Stone. Holiday House

A suspenseful young adult thriller about four teens who have been recruited to attend a CIA Black Ops training school in Arizona. Nadia joins Jack, Damon and Libby on a team, but the news that there’s a double-agent at the school has them suspecting each other. Exciting right to the very end! This book would make a great movie for teens or adults. Ages 12 and up

The Donkey Lady Fights La Llorona and Other Stories/La Señora Asno Se Enfrenta a La Llorona Y Otros Cuentos

By Xavier Garza. Piñata Books/Arte Publico Press

This fun, bilingual collection of Mexican-inspired short horror tales would be a treat for a camp fire read-aloud or other get-together for kids ages 9-12. One of the offerings, “Tunnels,” starts with a boy falling into a tunnel and confronting some drug dealers. Luckily his dog, Chato, comes to his rescue. Is Chato actually a dog or a chupacabra? You’ll have to read “Tunnels” and the other stories to find out!

Maya’s Blanket/La Manta de Maya

By Monica Brown; illustrated by David Diaz. Children’s Book Press

Maya’s blanket, handmade by her abuelita, has become frayed and worn, so they turn it into a vestido (dress). As it becomes more and more worn out, the remnants are used as a rebozo, a cinta (ribbon), and a bookmark. This story was inspired by the Yiddish folk song “I Had a Little Overcoat.” The colorful illustrations and engaging storyline make it a perfect choice for bilingual story time. Ages 5-9

Slingshot and Burp

By Richard Haynes; illustrations by Stephen Gilpin. Candlewick Press

Slingshot and Burp are two boys riding around dusty trails on their trusty steeds (bikes), looking for action. When they return to their bunkhouse, the boys find that their sisters have turned it into a pink doll house. They shoot up the dolls and suffer two days of ‘jail’ time for the crime. Once released, Slingshot and Burp go back to their adventures, hunting for snakes, scorpions, and a Ghost Cat. Ages 7-10

Stealing Indians

By John Smelcer. Leapfrog Press

As recently as the middle of the last century, when this book is set, Native American children were routinely taken from their families and sent away to government boarding schools in an attempt to assimilate them into white society. The motto of the time was “Kill the Indian, save the man,” and the boarding schools tore apart the lives of thousands of Native American families. Smelcer focuses on four Native American children. One of them, Simon Lone Fight, a Navajo from Four Corners, lost his parents when they were killed in a car accident and was turned over to the authorities by his grandparents. He spent the rest of his teen years at the school, along with hundreds of other Native American children. A disturbing, factual account. Ages 12 and up

Sand Dune Daisy: A Pocket Mouse Tale

By Lili DeBarbieri; illustrations by M. Fred Barraza. Westcliffe Publishers

Daisy is a tiny pocket mouse living in a sand dunes burrow. Gypsum, a kit fox, is hunting for food for his family and likes to eat mice. Daisy gets lost one day and is chased by Gypsum and a hawk when suddenly she sees a child sledding down a dune. Daisy hops onto the sled and whooshes away! There is a good glossary at the end of the story as well as a ‘Did You Know’ section that describes four of the largest sand dunes in the United States. Ages 5-8

—By Ann Dickinson