Tuesday, June 15, 2010

On a search for kids' books in Spanish

Just because I recently blew $350 on kids books in Spanish in Spain doesn’t mean my continued hunt is over. No, I’m no longer searching ebay for boxes full of random books. But I am keeping my eyes open. I was happy to find one more potential source this week.

Our library sells used books at the entrance for a small fraction of their original price. I had flipped through the children’s books before, but never saw anything in Spanish. Then, I noticed a small, low shelf with a tag reading “Children’s foreign language books.” There, they clumped together books in any language but English – German, Russian, Spanish and others. There were only a few, but I managed to find two worth buying at $1 a piece. As it’s near the entrance to the library, I’ll be stopping by that shelf regularly, ready to pounce when someone donates their Spanish-language collection.

I thought the days of book collecting were already past, that technology made it unnecessary to buy and hold books. But in this specific area, I’m finding that getting my child exposure to a variety of quality material in Spanish requires collecting in the most traditional sense. The fact that internet ordering has not caught on in Spain and that there are no real online bookstores there makes it even more challenging. I feel like I’ve stepped back a few decades in which a book was a treasure to hold and admire and enjoy.

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