Alma and How She Got Her Name is a wonderful book showing how a name we carry in the present can pay tribute to those that came before us. Thank you to Candlewick Press for the review copy!

Title: Alma and How She Got Her Name
Author and Illustrator: Juana Martinez-Neal
Rating: 9
Source: Candlewick Press for review

Description from Amazon:

What’s in a name? For one little girl, her very long name tells the vibrant story of where she came from — and who she may one day be.

If you ask her, Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela has way too many names: six! How did such a small person wind up with such a large name? Alma turns to Daddy for an answer and learns of Sofia, the grandmother who loved books and flowers; Esperanza, the great-grandmother who longed to travel; José, the grandfather who was an artist; and other namesakes, too. As she hears the story of her name, Alma starts to think it might be a perfect fit after all — and realizes that she will one day have her own story to tell. In her author-illustrator debut, Juana Martinez-Neal opens a treasure box of discovery for children who may be curious about their own origin stories or names.

What I Thought:

Kids LOVE hearing stories about themselves. And one of my kids’ favourite stories is the story of how we chose their names.

When I was twelve I heard the name Evelyn, fell in love with it, and thought to myself, “When I grow up, I’m going to have a little girl and I’m going to name her Evelyn.” And so I did! And I still love it!

Then we had another girl and I thought, “I’ve only ever thought about the one name I like! Shoot! I have to name another person!” Haha. We had it narrowed down to Lucy and Lily, and then we met a cat named Lily, and Evelyn refused to entertain the thought that we would name the baby that. So Lucy was picked! We used family names as middle names for both of them.

Alma and How She Got Her Name goes through Alma’s father telling her the stories of the amazing men and women in her family that she was named after. As each story is told we are shown a wonderful illustration featuring the family member. The use of blue for the past and red for Alma’s present is a beautiful way to show how we can mingle our history with our future.

I loved how each relative did something special in their own way, and that they were all loved and admired for being themselves.

This book would be perfect for a kindergarten unit on names!

What Evelyn Thought:

I loved it. I liked learning about why she got named that and seeing the people she got named after. The pictures are super cute. I liked talking to Mom about my name.

Where to Get It:

Click here to get this wonderful book through my affiliate link!

So, were you named after anyone? Or is your name unique to you?