UTSA writer-in-residence Carmen Tafolla honored by Library of Congress

book award presentation

Americas awards committee members with UTSA writer-in-residence Carmen Tafolla (in red)

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(Nov. 4, 2011) -- The Hispanic Division of the Center for the Book in the U.S. Library of Congress again is honoring UTSA's Carmen Tafolla for her work in children's literature. Tafolla's latest children's book, "Fiesta Babies," was recognized as a 2011 Americas Award Commended Title. Last year, she and illustrator Magaly Morales won the 2010 Americas Award from the federal library for their book "What Can You Do with a Paleta?/Qué puedes hacer con una paleta?"

A San Antonio native, Tafolla is the College of Education and Human Development Writer-in-Residence for Children's, Youth and Transformative Literature and a senior lecturer in the UTSA Department of Bicultural-Bilingual Studies.

Tafolla is the author of an array of books for children and adults that vividly describe the rich culture of San Antonio's West Side barrios. "Fiesta Babies" describes in melodic, rhyming text how a group of babies are introduced to their lively culture when they join in the local fiesta. The book was named one of the "Best Books for Babies of 2011" by the Fred Rogers Corp.

"What Can You Do with a Paleta?/Qué puedes hacer con una paleta?" follows a young Latina through her barrio with the tasty fruit-filled treat. Her other books include "That's Not Fair! Emma Tenayuca's Struggle for Justice," based on the true story of young Mexican American activist Emma Tenayuca, and "The Holy Tortilla and a Pot of Beans," a short story collection centered on San Antonio and 2009 winner of the Tomas Rivera Book Award.

The Americas Award, originated by the Consortium for Latin American Studies Programs, is given in recognition of U.S. works of fiction, poetry, folklore or selected non-fiction (from picture books to works for young adults) published in English or Spanish that authentically and engagingly portray Latin America, the Caribbean or Latinos in the United States.

>> Learn more about Carmen Tafolla's work.