Francisco, a young Mexican American boy, tries to help his Mexican grandfather find work. The old man cannot speak English and knows nothing about gardening, but Francisco talks fast and gets him hired as a gardener. The resulting mistakes teach Francisco an important lesson about honesty.Francisco, a young Mexican American boy, tries to help his Mexican grandfather find work. The old man cannot speak English and knows nothing about gardening, but Francisco talks fast and gets him hired as a gardener. The resulting mistakes teach Francisco an important lesson about honesty.Read Less
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Let me begin by saying that I am a big fan of Eve Bunting and admire her for writing about people who otherwise receive little attention in stories. "A Day's Work" is worthy of that reputation. It is a story of day laborers from Mexico; moreover, it describes how the whole family pulls together to make ends meet (a theme that Francisco Jimenez beautifully explores in "The Circuit/Cajas de Carton). Though it's a simple story, there are several surprise twists. As with her other stories, Eve Bunting tells this one with her characteristic sensitivity without indulging in, you know, the mushy stuff. This book will enable children and adults alike to take a new look at honesty and, as the title says, a day's work.
Publishers Weekly, 1997-04-21 A boy lies to secure work for his grandfather, newly arrived from Mexico; Himler's "expressive, gestural watercolors... strongly invoke both the harsh and tender landscapes of [the story]," said PW. Ages 5-8. (Apr.)
Publishers Weekly, 1994-08-08 Francisco, trying to find work for his grandfather, or abuelo, who has just arrived from Mexico, acts as a liaison between Abuelo, who doesn't speak English, and Ben, who wants to hire a gardener for a day's work. Eager to earn the badly needed pay, Francisco assures Ben that his grandfather is a skilled gardener (Abuelo is in fact a carpenter). Returning at the end of the day, Ben is shocked to discover that Francisco and Abuelo stripped his field of the plants and left the weeds. Abuelo is also angered, learning only now that Francisco had lied to Ben, and refuses payment until they have done the job correctly. Recognizing the older man's integrity, Ben rewards Abuelo and Francisco with the promise of ``more than just one day's work.'' Says Ben of the plants: ``The roots are still there. If they've replanted early, they'll be alright.'' Similarly, Francisco is given a chance to start over. He changes from a na?vely parental figure to a child who ``had begun to learn the important things.'' The shift in the boy's role quietly suggests not only the importance of a work ethic but also Francisco's need to be a child, guided by a caring adult. With expressive, gestural watercolors, Himler, who illustrated Bunting's Fly Away Home and Someday a Tree, conveys the boy's complex relationship with his grandfather and strongly invokes both the harsh and the tender landscapes of Francisco's world. Ages 5-8. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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