A post by Peter Jordens:

Martí’s Song for Freedom / Martí y sus versos por la libertad, by Emma Otheguy with Beatriz Vidal (illustration) and Adriana Dominguez (translation); Children’s Book Press, July 17, 2017. (Hardcover, 32 pages; ISBN: 978-0892393756.)

Description from the publisher:  As a boy, José Martí was inspired by the natural world. He found freedom in the river that rushed to the sea and peace in the palmas reales that swayed in the wind. Freedom, he believed, was the inherent right of all men and women. But his home island of Cuba was colonized by Spain, and some of the people were enslaved by rich landowners. Enraged, Martí took up his pen and fought against this oppression through his writings. By age seventeen, he was declared an enemy of Spain and forced to leave his beloved island. Martí traveled the world, speaking out for Cuba’s independence. But throughout his exile, he suffered from illness and homesickness. He found solace in New York’s Catskill Mountains, where nature inspired him once again to fight for independence. Written in verse, with excerpts from Martí’s seminal Versos sencillos (1891), this book is a beautiful tribute to a brilliant political writer and courageous fighter of freedom for all men and women. Age Range: 7-10 years.


“A sensitive and poignant tribute to one of Latin America’s most important historical figures that will encourage readers of all ages to fight for freedom and peace.” – School Library Journal

“In bringing an important life back into the conversation during divided political times, this book spotlights a steadfast hero and brilliant writer still worth admiring today.” – Kirkus Reviews

“Excerpts from Martí’s Versos sencillos thoughtfully underscore this moving account of his crusade for justice.” – Publisher’s Weekly

“Otheguy and Vidal tell a timely story that will inspire many to fight for equality and sing songs for freedom.” – Booklist

The author: Emma Otheguy is a children’s book author and a historian of Spain and colonial Latin America. She is a member of the Bank Street Writers Lab, and her short story “Fairies in Town” was awarded Magazine Merit Honors by the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI).


Thursday, July 20, 2017, 5:30 – 7:00pm; NYC Book Launch, The Corner Bookstore, 1313 Madison Avenue (at 93rd Street), New York, NY 10128  (212) 831-3554

Saturday, September 9, 2017, 3:30pm; Reading and Signing, Books and Books, 265 Aragon Avenue, Coral Gables, FL 33134  (305) 442-4408

Sources: and

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