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Cover image for Dalia's wondrous hair = El cabello maravilloso de Dalia
Dalia's wondrous hair = El cabello maravilloso de Dalia
Other title(s):
Cabello maravilloso de Dalia
Houston, Texas : Piñata Books, an imprint of Arte Publico Press, [2014]
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
General Note:
"Funded by grants from the City of Houston, through the Houston Arts Alliance"--Copyright page.
A Cuban girl transforms her long and unruly hair into a garden.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader LG 3.2 .5.


Call Number

On Order



One night, while Dalia slept safely wrapped in her mother's cool silken sheets, her hair grew and grew. By the time the rooster crowed, her hair had "grown straight up to the sky, tall and thick as a Cuban royal palm tree." Her mother was amazed, and wondered what her daughter would do with her wondrous hair.As Dalia looked at the flowers blooming in the garden, an idea sprouted inside her. She decorated her hair with leaves from the forest and mud from the marsh. Her mother was puzzled and could not imagine what she was. "Are you a leaf-crusted mud-tree?" she guessed incorrectly. That night, while Dalia slept safely cocooned in her mama's sheets, something stirred and unfolded. When the rooster crowed, the girl ran outside and everyone watched in awe as she carefully unwrapped her towering hair. Could it be? Is Dalia a . . . blossoming butterfly tree?!?In this whimsical bilingual picture book, Dalia's hair becomes a magical force of nature, a life-giving cocoon. Author and illustrator Laura Lacamara once again delights children ages 4 to 9 with her vibrant illustrations and an imaginative story about a girl's fanciful encounters with nature.Bonus features include a guide for how to create your own butterfly garden at home, as well as a bilingual glossary of select plant and animal species native to the island of Cuba.

Reviews 4

School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 2-One day, a young Latina girl's thick, black, wavy tresses stand straight up into the air. This might sound like a set-up for a bad hair day, but rather than being appalled or upset, Dalia happily makes the most of it. She proceeds to add items in her hair to look more like the natural surroundings, in hopes of resembling a special tree for her mother. The childhood appeal of this little girl interacting with nature will resonate with a broad audience, who will like Dalia. The Spanish translation is good, and it is just as enjoyable to read in English as it is in Spanish. At the end, the author includes a glossary of flora native to Cuba that are mentioned in the story. Additionally, there are some notes on how to create a butterfly garden. Lacamara's rich and colorful artwork beautifully complement the imaginative text. A fun and enjoyable read-aloud.-Maricela Leon-Barrera, San Francisco Public Library (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

A rich, warm palette and paintings bursting with vegetation-both drawn from Lacamara's native Cuba-add to the anything-is-possible atmosphere of this charming bilingual story about a girl who decides to do something special with her towering beehive of hair. Dalia asks her mother to guess what kind of tree she is as she packs her bouffant with leaves from the forest and mud from the swamp. Although Dalia's 'do gets a tad icky ("Do you want me to take care of that?" offers a machete-wielding neighbor), the whimsical result is worth it. Ages 4-9. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Horn Book Review

When Dalia wakes up, her hair has grown "tall and thick as a Cuban royal palm tree." She gathers leaves, mud, and other treasures and turns her hair into a tree. The next morning butterflies fly out; she's a "BUTTERFLY TREE!!" Enhanced by lush illustrations, the Spanish and English texts don't make much sense but are full of references to Cuba's natural world. Glos. (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Booklist Review

Wondrous hair that grows overnight into a treelike shape must be meant for something big, right? Young Dalia has an idea and soon is searching in the Cuban forest for wild tamarind, violets, and coontie leaves for her hairdo. Then she adds mud. Neighbors disapprove of Dalia's coiffure, but Mama is supportive at least for one more day. Dalia shows her a surprise: all of the additions to her hair are the natural foods and habitats for local butterfly caterpillars, which hatch into glorious butterflies. The illustrations portray the Cuban countryside in vibrant golds, greens, reds, oranges, and blues and provide a lively heroine, whose actions will confound and delight in equal parts. The Spanish text sits alongside the English version, and at the book's conclusion, the author provides information about each plant mentioned in the text. She also gives recommendations for starting a butterfly garden at home. Vivid imagination and big hair make for an unusual story.--Edmundson, Martha Copyright 2010 Booklist