Alma and How She Got Her Name

Alma and How She Got Her Name

Book - 2018
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Random House, Inc.
A 2019 Caldecott Honor Book

What’s in a name? For one little girl, her very long name tells the vibrant story of where she came from — and who she may one day be.

If you ask her, Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela has way too many names: six! How did such a small person wind up with such a large name? Alma turns to Daddy for an answer and learns of Sofia, the grandmother who loved books and flowers; Esperanza, the great-grandmother who longed to travel; José, the grandfather who was an artist; and other namesakes, too. As she hears the story of her name, Alma starts to think it might be a perfect fit after all — and realizes that she will one day have her own story to tell. In her author-illustrator debut, Juana Martinez-Neal opens a treasure box of discovery for children who may be curious about their own origin stories or names.

Baker & Taylor
When Alma Sofia Esperanza Josâe Pura Candela asks her father why she has so many names, she hears the story of her name and learns about her grandparents.

Publisher: Somerville, Massachusetts : Candlewick Press, 2018
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9780763693558
Branch Call Number: E MARTI
Characteristics: 1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 24 x 25 cm
Alternative Title: Alma & how she got her name


From Library Staff

PreS-Gr 2–After complaining that her name is so long that it “never fits,” a child listens as her father shares his memories of the five relatives for whom she has been named: Sofia, Esperanza, José, Pura, and Candela. “Alma” alone belongs to the girl, to create “her own story.” Bathed in sepia t... Read More »

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PimaLib_AnnieW Mar 26, 2019

This is one of my very favorites from 2018. A beautiful celebration of a child's relationship with her father, her name, and her ancestors. Highly recommend.

IndyPL_KatieB Feb 05, 2019

Alma Sofia Esperanza Jose Pura Candela has a very long name. In fact, it is too long if you ask her. Children and adults will enjoy hearing the story of how Alma got her name. The illustrations are simple but telling. I like how Spanish and English words are woven through the story in a seamless fashion. A lovely book that is well deserving of the Caldecott Honor Award in 2019.


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