Thursday 8 April 2010

Junior Correspondent Review: Martina the Beautiful Cockroach

Title: Martina the Beautiful Cockroach: A Cuban Folktale
Author: Carmen Agra Deedy
Publisher: Peachtree Publishers
Reading Level: 4-8 yrs

Rating: 4/5 stars!


Carmen Agra Deedy delivers a deliciously inventive Cuban version of the beloved Martina folktale, complete with a dash of café cubano.

Martina the beautiful cockroach doesn t know coffee beans about love and marriage. That s where her Cuban family comes in. While some of the Cucarachas offer her gifts to make her more attractive, only Abuela, her grandmother, gives her something really useful: un consejo increible, some shocking advice. You want me to do what? Martina gasps.

At first, Martina is skeptical of her Abuela s unorthodox suggestion, but when suitor after suitor fails The Coffee Test, she wonders if a little green cockroach can ever find true love. Soon, only the gardener Pérez, a tiny brown mouse, is left. But what will happen when Martina offers him café Cubano?

After reading this sweet and witty retelling of the Cuban folktale, you ll never look at a cockroach the same way again.

I love Martina the Beautiful Cockroach. My mommy got it from the library and we kept renewing it because the book was so good. I love how she does the voices for all the characters in the book. It’s a really funny book with great pictures. It’s a good book for any age. I love her name. It’s Martina Josefina Catalina Cucaracha. Finally, I love who Martina chooses to marry, but you’ll have to read the book to find out who.



  1. OMG
    A Cuban roach?
    I am ALLLL over this!
    I'm going to buy this for my niece.
    I love it!
    (I'm 1/2 Cuban my self)
    Thanks for the review!

  2. Cute! I simply love the cover. The illustration is gorgeous!

  3. I LOVED it when you read this to me over the phone Lizzy! It is an adorable tale!! I need to buy it. It's THAT cute!!! Even Uncle Luis likes it!!

  4. Your Mom does really cute voices when she reads the book. I love it too. -Grandma

  5. I just read this one to my students last week, they loved it.


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