The True Story Behind the Children’s Story – Cuba, Family, Love, & Connection
On an alligator-shaped island in the middle of a wide sea, there lived a little girl who loved maps and dreamed of far away places. In another part of the world, at the mouth of a wide bay, there lived an old man who’d once dreamed of sailing the world and making friends in foreign lands.
When these two strangers connect through a message in a bottle, it sparks a friendship that expands both of their worlds.
Based on a true story, Arletis, Abuelo, and the Message in a Bottle is an illustrated children’s book of life in rural Cuba. We discuss the story book, the inspiring true story behind it, and writing for children’s books.
About Lea Aschkenas
Lea Aschkenas has written reviews for Washington Post Book World, Los Angeles Review of Books, and Salon. She’s the author of a travel memoir Es Cuba: Life and Love on an Illegal Island. She fell in love with Cuba and its people on her first trip to the island in 2000, and has returned almost every year since. Arletis, Abuelo, and the Message in a Bottle is her first children’s book. Lea lives in Northern California where she works as a librarian and teaches with the California Poets in the Schools program. Visit www.pencilmoonstudio.com to lean about the award-winning husband and wife children’s book illustrator team – Cornelius Van Wright and Ying-Hwa Hu.Continue reading