Gloria Smiled: A Story About Disappointment, Resilience, and The Sorpresa!

Hazel P. Rosenthal. (Henry and Friends). May 2023. 27p. pap. $11.99. ISBN 9781736975534.
PreS-Gr 3–Gloria, a sweet-faced quail, is excited about a special day that has finally arrived. She simply can’t understand it when her covey (a group of quails) doesn’t seem to share her glee, so she decides to plan a party to drum up some enthusiasm. Gloria hears mention of a “sorpresa,” and though she doesn’t know exactly what it means, she figures that it can’t be a good thing and may even involve a skunk! The day’s action, depicted in pleasant watercolor, takes Gloria through a landscape of cottonwood and cacti to the banks of the Rio Grande and through a patch of wild strawberries, highlighting the varied terrain of the Southwest. While the story is bland, the vocabulary words peppered throughout make it stand out from the average tale of animal adventure; Pacheco uses the opportunity to introduce Spanish words as well as the names of regional flora. A helpful glossary goes into further detail. Despite the scripture on the dedication page, this reads as a secular story.
VERDICT This isn’t an essential purchase, but may find a home with readers who appreciate the beauty of the natural world.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing