New “Catalina Neon” Chapter and Prompt!

Cover by Juana Medina

Cover by Juana Medina

Greetings, neonis! We’re thrilled to announce that Chapter Two of “The Technicolor Adventures of Catalina Neon” is now online for your reading and listening pleasure and participation. In the month following Catalina’s debut, submissions from second and third grade librarians and students across the country flooded our inbox and senses, continuing Catalina’s adventures in winding, wild, whimsical ways. UFOs, hot dogs, aliens, gooey tunnels, and a mysterious underground library—just to name a few things—populate the pages of this new imaginative chapter.

To write Chapter Two, Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera chose five of his favorite contributions from all received submissions, imagined how elements from each contribution could combine to push Catalina and her dog, Tortilla, further along on their adventure, and then brought this chapter to life with help from illustrator Juana Medina.


About writing this chapter, Herrera says:

I felt very moved reading this set of submissions for Catalina Neon. Students are so creative, and they are so hilarious, and they have great ideas, and they are super inventive, and they are great writers, by the way, and have mega imaginations, and they catapulted me into another level of knowing what a book for children is and how to write it and create characters who are flexible, unique, and appeal to young people! With our great artist Juana Medina, it all comes together like magic on ice cream.

Because this chapter, and project at large, wouldn’t exist without the energy and imagination from second and third grade contributors, we sincerely thank the librarians, teachers, and students who propelled Chapter Two forward:

Illustration by Juana Medina

Illustration by Juana Medina

Now that Chapter Two (including the prompt to write the next chapter) is online, we again call out to grade school librarians and teachers across the country: Get your second and third grade students “neonized” and help our poet laureate decide what happens next to Catalina and Tortilla in “The Technicolor Adventures of Catalina Neon”!

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