Funny Bones: Posada and his Day of the Dead Calaveras by Duncan Tonatiuh

Published by Abrams Books for Young Readers 

Summary: In late nineteenth century Mexico, Jose Guadalupe Posada (Lupe) was a prolific artist who owned his own print shop. He became well-known, first for his satirical political illustrations, and later for his prints of Calaveras, or skeletons, that were extremely popular around Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebrations. This book tells the story of Posada’s life, and also details the steps of his various printmaking techniques and looks at possible meanings behind some of his more enigmatic works. Back matter includes a lengthy author’s note about Posada and the history of Dia de los Muertos celebrations; a glossary and bibliography; and a list of U.S. locations where Posada’s works can be viewed. Grades 1-5.

Pros: This book could be used for many subjects: history, art, and Mexican culture. The illustrations are done in a Mexican folk art style and include several of Posada’s works.

Cons: Some may find the Calaveras a bit creepy.

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