Vincent Ventura and the Curse of the Dancing Devil/Vincent Ventura y la maldición del diablo bailarín

Piñata Bks. (A Monster Fighter Mystery/Serie Exterminador de monstruos: Bk. 5). May 2023. 136p. pap. $11.95. ISBN 9781558859654. BL.
Gr 3-6–The monster-fighting tween is back in this fifth installment of the long-running series. Set in South Texas, this rollicking tale features Vincent Ventura battling a mysterious and handsome devil (literally) who has moved in across the street. The twirling creature is also the father of Lilith Del Diablo, a new girl at school, who is caught between her family legacy and her new friends. Her diabolical dad wants her to join him in terrorizing young women at dance halls along the U.S.-Mexico border. Armed with his friends, cousins, and the monster-fighting tools he mysteriously found in his mother’s old trunk, the brave and adventurous protagonist continues his fight against creatures inspired by Mexican legends. Garza successfully continues his thrilling series with his signature humor, kid-centric themes, and quick pace. His illustrations also bring home the scary aspects of the narrative while making the novel more accessible. This flip book relates the story in English on one side and in Spanish on the other. It will keep readers intrigued for the next entry. Each of the volumes stand alone, but familiarity with the previous books adds to the enjoyment.
VERDICT A great choice for bilingual and Spanish-language shelves and where short middle grade readers are needed.

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