Bisa's Carnaval

by Joana Pastro (Author) Carolina Coroa (Illustrator)

Bisa's Carnaval
Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade

Discover the sights and sounds of Brazil through the eyes of a young girl and her great-grandmother as they share in the excitement of Carnaval!

It's time for Carnaval and Clara cannot wait to celebrate her favorite holiday with family, but especially with her great-grandmother. Even if Bisa can't attend, Clara knows the Carnaval parade will still be special.Costumed lovingly by their bisa, everyone takes to the street for the annual parade. But even among all the colors, costumes, music, and dancing, something is missing . . . or is it someone?With lush, lyrical text and bright, colorful illustrations, this book takes readers to one of the most exciting holidays of the year and reminds us that no matter who or where you are, love is always worth celebrating.

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School Library Journal

Gr 1-4--Clara is excited about celebrating Carnaval. It is her holiday to enjoy with her family. She worries that this year her bisa (great-grandmother) will not be able to attend. In the first spread, the phrase, "Louder, Faster," is bolded, reversed, and enlarged, which acts to convey the tempo of the celebration, a festive time that brings everyone together and is a way for the older generation to pass on tradition. This is depicted as Bisa shows Clara, who needn't have worried, an album filled with pictures of past experiences. They are part of a larger cultural celebration that extends to readers as they see the village come together; the pages are filled with color, the rhythm of the sounds, and the street signs and other writing in Spanish. VERDICT A great additon to holiday collections, this book celebrates community and legacy.--Ruth Guerrier-Pierre, New York P.L.

Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Praise for Bisa's Carnaval:

* The Brazilian duo of author Pastro and illustrator Coroa bring to life the street Carnaval of Olinda, a city in the northeast of Brazil, with a story that celebrates one of the country's most important and beloved holidays with humor, truth, and heart. — Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Joana Pastro
Art has always been a major part of Carolina Coroa, from her childhood in Brazil to her life in Dublin, where she works as a designer. She brings color and light to all her work, especially in her own visual storytelling. Visit her at
Joana Pastro is an architect turned children's author whose love for writing continues to grow. Many of her stories are inspired by her own childhood and her adventures as a mother. Originally from Brazil, Joana now lives in Florida with her amazing husband, her three extremely creative children, and a rambunctious Morkie. Visit Joana at
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Orchard Books
Publication date
December 20, 2021
BISAC categories
JUV013030 - Juvenile Fiction | Family | Multigenerational
JUV030040 - Juvenile Fiction | People & Places | Caribbean & Latin America
JUV017080 - Juvenile Fiction | Holidays & Celebrations | Other, Non-Religious
Library of Congress categories
Olinda (Brazil)

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