Cover Reveal: Mañanaland by Pam Muñoz Ryan

Hello, Pam Muñoz Ryan! Welcome back to Watch. Connect. Read.! It is always a super day when I am given an opportunity to celebrate books with you. I stared at Mañanaland’s cover for a long time when it landed in my email inbox earlier today. I said out loud to myself, “Wow! I can only imagine how Pam’s heart felt the first time she saw Paola Escobar’s cover illustration for Mañanaland.” 

Pam Muñoz Ryan: 
Hi John. Thank you! l had seen sketches along the way and loved the concept. But nothing could have prepared me for the vibrant color version. You’re right. My heart skipped when I first saw it. The looming tower, called La Reina Gigante, is an important presence and symbol in the story, with many layers of meaning for the reader to peel away and discover. So I was delighted to see it used for the central image. And I’m in awe of how Paola captured the setting and the mythology of the story, along with some of the subtleties, such as the face in La Reina, and people hidden within the trees.

Illustration Credit: Paola Escobar | Designer Credit: Marijka Kostiw

Pam, are you up for a challenge? Please booktalk Mañanaland using no more than 280 characters.

Pam Muñoz Ryan: After Max discovers a family secret related to the mother he has never known, he sets out on a quest to find her, putting his faith in a legend about a mystical gatekeeper who can help him. Mañanaland is about people in hiding and those who risk their lives to protect them.

What are three things you want everyone to know about Maximiliano Feliciano Esteban Cordoba?

Pam Muñoz Ryan: He comes from a humble, yet noble legacy, and is true of heart.

Like me, he grows up not knowing one of his birth parents, lives with that parent’s identity shrouded in secrecy, and contends with uncertainty and the ever-present question: What will become of me?

His story could have happened decades ago, it is happening now, and it will likely continue in the tomorrows to come.

Please finish these sentence starters:

I hope Mañanaland helps readers find entry into their own Mañanalands and gives them hope.

School librarians are a lifeline for so many children and an invaluable part of our literacy universe.

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me about failure and how many times I start over. I never get it right the first time or the first five times. I often become sidetracked. Thank goodness I have a wonderful editor, Tracy Mack, who keeps me headed in the right direction. I wish writing was an orderly process for me. Instead, it’s a messy evolution fraught with self-doubt, do-overs, deletions, and going back to revisit. Any success is the tip of an iceberg built on many unsuccessful attempts at sculpting a character and a story.

Look for Mañanaland on March 2, 2020. 


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