When I find a book about a subject I know little about, I always wonder, “Is there really a need for it?” And then I read the book. Sometimes I read it and think, no we didn’t need it. Or sometimes I think we do need it, but I feel other books have handled the theme better. But with Only for a Little While by Gabriela Orozco Belt. I figured, we do need it, as I was thinking I know there are books out there, but I cannot think of one that covers this issue.
The story of Maribel is not a happy one. She and her family are moving. And in the long run that is not a sad thing, but it is because of the why. Her father has lost his job and they need to find a home they can afford. In the voice of the youngest member of the family, we see the ups and downs of this new reality. And how even though there are hardships, they have each other to help with the bad feelings and bad times. So, they have to share a room that is just better for snuggles. And maybe there are a lot of noisy cousins, but that just means more friends to play with. But even Maribel sometimes has a hard time looking on the bright side. And this time she needs someone to tell her “por un ratito” or just for a little while.
Richy Sandchez Ayala’s illustrations are sweet, and have a classic touch to them. Things are colorful, busy, and expressive. They are comfortable and cozy. They, along with the English and a few Spanish words, have a story that is touching, sad, and hopeful. Available late June 2023, you can also find the Spanish edition. Por Un Ratito: Only for a Little While. Read via an online reader copy.