Wednesday, March 17, 2010

"My Shoes and I" by Rene Colato

I have only been a blog host since the beginning of 2010, and, so far, I have greatly enjoyed it.

Seriously, this is a pretty sweet gig I got! (Can I get a holler, y’all?)

I get to meet a new author, get to ask some great questions, AND I get a free (sometimes, autographed) book! SWEET!

So far, I’ve had to honor of hosting Silvio Sirias, author of Meet Me Under the Ceiba, and Kermit Lopez, author of Cibolero. But this is the first time I have hosted an author of a children’s book, and it has given me a new appreciation for this job because not only am I a reader and a writer, but I am also an Illustrator. So you can imagine my enthusiasm.

Today, I am hosting author, Rene Colato, and his book, My Shoes and I.

If you have been following this tour, then you have a good idea of what the book is about. But just to recap.

It is all about a little boy’s journey across land. And what do you think accompanies him on this journey? You guess it, his shoes—his brand new shoes he received as a gift from his mother in the United States. Each page illustrates an obstacle the little boy encounters in his first cross-country trip to America. Some of these obstacles include a pack of dogs that eat his sandwich, a lost wallet in the bus terminal, and a hike through a torrential rain storm.

What I liked best about this book is that it’s not your typical children’s book with three little pigs or a little girl with a red hood. This book stands uniquely on its own. It is a true account of what it’s like to immigrate into this country. People have to crawl through dirt and mud, rain and storm, mountain and barbed wire to get to America.

Today, most kids have at least one older relative who went through that, like an aunt, a cousin, or grandfather. And this book would definitely show them (not just tell) but actually show them what these people went through to give them a better life. Not only was the story quick and easy to follow, but the illustrations were fun. They had a distinct, distorted style with a sketchy, child-like quality. It reminded me of all the crayon drawings I did as I kid.

And, in each picture, the focal point was always those shoes. Almost every detail in the picture pointed to the shoes.

Thank you, Rene, for bringing your work into my life.

If you think that this book would be great for some kid you know, then here’s your chance to win a free copy by the author, Rene Colato.

Leave a comment on this blog and fill out the contest entry form provided by the link below.

Be sure to fill this form out so Rene will know where to send this book

If you don't win, you can still buy the book here at Dulce

Dulce Bread & Book Shop

About the Author:
I am René Colato Laínez, the Salvadoran award winning author of I Am René, the Boy, Waiting for Papá, Playing Lotería, René Has Two Last Names and The Tooth Fairy Meets El Ratón Pérez. My picture books have been honored by the Latino Book Award, the Paterson Prize for Books for Young People, the California Collection for Elementary Readers, the Tejas Star Book Award Selection and the New Mexico Book Award. I was named “Top Ten New Latino Authors to Watch (and Read)” by I am a graduate of the Vermont College MFA program in Writing for Children & Young Adults.
My goal as a writer is to produce good multicultural children's literature; stories where minority children are portrayed in a positive way, where they can see themselves as heroes, and where they can dream and have hopes for the future. I want to write authentic stories of Latin American children living in the United States

The tour continues with:

Here is the schedule:

Monday March 08-Mayra Calvani

Tuesday March 09-Lori Calabrese

Wednesday March 10-Christina Rodriguez

Thursday March 11-Silvia

Friday March 12-Monica Olivera Hazelton

Monday March 15- Tina Nichols Coury

Tuesday March 16-Michael Sedano

Wednesday March 17-Caridad Pineiro

Thursday March 18-Sandra Lopez

Friday March 19-Sheila DeChantal



  1. I have sooo enjoyed the blog tour as well... Rene's book is heartfelt and beautifully written and illustrated. He tells a beautiful story and shares so much of himself with the world.



  2. I agree! I especially like that Rene is the "teacher will all the stories." Another question for Rene: Will you be writing stories for other readers-like teens, maybe?

    Because I started off writing YA novels for teens, but I would like to experiment with writing for children. Any advice?

  3. Nice post, Sandra! I have enjoyed each and every blog stop on this tour for My Shoes and I. I cannot say enough wonderful things about this story. Each blog host has brought about a variety of views in regards to Rene's book or his work in general. I look forward to reading Rene's advice to your question. He has also done a guest post at Adriana Dominguez's blog Voces where he offers tips on writing for children.

    Thank you, Zulmara, for following this tour! I hope you win a copy of My Shoes and I.

    The tour wraps up tomorrow with blog host Sheila DeChantal.

    Thanks again, Sandra, for your contribution to this tour for My Shoes and I by Rene Colato Lainez.


  4. Hola,

    I will be answering questions today.

    Sandra- I plan to write middle grade and young adult novel.

    Read my post of Voces ( You will find my tips about writing for children. It is fun!