co-author, David Gershator
by Enrique O. Sanchez
Kaleidoscope, National Council of English Teachers, 2001
me, mon! Turo is astonished to hear a coconut say just as he
reaches out to pick it. Muchacho,
don’t listen to those coconuts. They’re nutty, the parrot in the
kapok tree calls down. Turo hears from the dog, the cat, even the frog
in the rain barrel--even the sweet potatoes he tries to dig up to eat. What’s this roogoodoo? Turo wants
to know--what is going on?
Down the road, Turo’s neighbor Mrs. Zephyr, is
having trouble with her talking bananas, and the Fisherman can’t sell
any of his talking fish! Everyone shrugs and says it must be one of
those days. Only Papa Tata Wanga might know what’s happening--he knows
all the island’s secrets.
Palampam Day--the day all things find their
voice and say whtever they want in any language under the Caribbean
sun--comes only once in a true blue moon. Follow Turo through a most
unusual day as he discovers the special magic it takes to restore order
to his island home.
Lush paintings shimmer with the brilliant
colors of the tropics in this sparkling Caribbean story.
about the book:
Among the editors who encouraged us, Judith
Whipple is at the top of the list. David has a quirky sense of humor
and is a linguist. I have a knack for readalouds. Between us, we wrote
some funny stories, and Judith Whipple was willing to help us improve
them. What a great collaboration!
Palampam Day was
inspired by a popular African
tale and life and language in the islands. “Palampam” or “pampalam” is
an old- time island word for “noise.
After you’ve been in the Caribbean a while,
the coconuts start talking to you, and if some of them happen to be
linguists, well, then it gets even more interesting.
|From the reviews:
“Colorful acrylic gouache paintings illustrate this charming tale set
in the West Indies.... An excellent multicultural selection as the tale
includes vocabulary (and a glossary) of words from many languages
spoken in the West Indies.” Children’s
Book Review Service
“The rollicking story plays with the different languages spoken in the
West Indies, and children will enjoy reciting the name of each thing
Turo encounters.... the softly colored, gently humorous illustrations
add another layer to the Caribbean setting.” Booklist
“This is a charming readaloud for comparing with other variants of the
tale and for thinking about the ethnic, cultural, and language
diversity of the Caribbean region.” Five
Owls, selected title.
“...a book that will be enjoyed solo or in a group, over and over
again.” School Library Journal