Viva Cisco by Patrick Shannon
“Viva Cisco” is a trilogy of funny stories for kids at the Age 10-13 reading level. All three tales unfold in a land called Topopootl, which lies in a hidden valley deep in the heart of Mexico. Because of its seclusion, the inhabitants have created a society without the benefit of human contact, and they don’t seem to have missed out on anything important in the absence of that dubious blessing. In fact, they probably have more pure merriment and boisterous excitement than any human community could ever conceive. Much of the credit for that, though, must be laid at the feet of Topopootl’s most..uh.. stimulating citizen, one Cisco las Verde Arara del Gucigalpa. Aka, Cisco the Parrot.
Amber, 9, loved this book. Cicso’s antics and adventures made her laugh and each time we stopped for the day, she would beg to read more. She wanted to know what was going to happen next. Of course, the fact that the “people” in the story were all talking animals was a definite positive point in her opinion. I like the strong friendships the characters have. They know none of them are perfect, but they love each other just the same, and do everything they can to help each other out.
In the book one, Cisco learns that everyone has their own special talents. In book two, he solves a “crime,” but not before totally embarrassing himself. In book 3, Cisco and his pals go on an adventure to find out the truth about Topopootl’s founding. I wish each of the books were separate. Combined in one volume, it gets a little long.