Last Stop On Market Street
Author: Matt De La Pena
Pictures: Christian Robinson
Genre: Children’s Literature
Publisher: G. P. Putnam Sons 2015
Source: Personal Copy
This book is the winner of the 2016 Newberry Medal, awarded for the most distinguished contribution to American Literature for Children. It is also a 2016 Caldecott Honor Book, a New York Times Bestseller, and winner of numerous other awards.
The story finds beauty in unexpected places. Nana takes CJ walking through the rain to the bus stop, and they ride the bus to the last stop on Market Street to help feed others at a soup kitchen. Nana helps her grandson to see things differently than is his first inclination. When they meet a blind man she tells him, “some people watch the world with their ears”. During their adventure CJ enjoys music and other simple pleasures. Readers go right along with CJ learning to see the world through the eyes and ears of Nana and people they meet along the way.
Author De La Pena has said his goal is “to show the grace and dignity on the wrong side of the tracks.” I think he shows his readers grace and dignity as can be found in many places if we only look carefully. Find out more about him and his books at www.mattdelapena.com. Take a few minutes with this simple book and like CJ you will say, “I’m glad we came.”