Personal Born November 22, 1947, in Coamo, PR; daughter of Segundo (an accountant) and Julia (a store manager) Bernier; married Jeremy H. Grand (a system specialist), May 10, 1975; children: William, Juliana Grand Kelly. Ethnicity: "Latina." Education: Catholic University of Puerto Rico, B.S., 1968; University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez, M.S., 1972; doctoral study at University of Connecticut, Storrs, 1973-75. Addresses Home—Portland, OR. E-mail—firstname.lastname@example.org. Career University of Puerto Rico, Cayey, instructor in math¬ ematics, 1971-78; ADP Dealer Services, Portland, OR, computer programmer, 1978-81; children's author, 1994—. Springfield Technical Community College, Springfield, MA, instructor, 1975-76; Community of Writers, Portland, speaker, 1999— also speaker at vari¬ ous schools and conferences. Member Authors Guild, Authors League of America, Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Willamette Writers. Awards, Honors Book of the Year citation, El Nuevo Día, for Poet and Politician of Puerto Rico: Don Luis Muñoz Marín; Smithsonian Notable Book citation, for In the Shade of the Níspero Tree; Notable Book citation, American Li¬ brary Association, Pura Belpré Honor Award, Notable Social Studies Trade Book designation, and Book for a Global Society designation, all 2006, all for César: ¡Sí, se puede!/Yes, We Can! Writings FOR CHILDREN Juan Bobo: Four Folktales from Puerto Rico, illustrated by Ernesto Ramos Nieves, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 1994. Poet and Politician of Puerto Rico: Don Luis Muñoz Marín, Orchard Books (New York, NY), 1995. Who Helped Ox?, illustrated by Vivi Escrivá, Scholastic Phonics Readers (New York, NY), 1997. In the Shade of the Níspero Tree, Orchard Books (New York, NY), 1999. Shake It, Morena!; and Other Folklore from Puerto Rico, illustrated by Lulu Delacre, Millbrook Press (Brook¬ field, CT), 2002. César: ¡Sí, se puedeì/Yes, We Can!, illustrated by David Diaz, Marshall Cavendish (New York, NY), 2004. Frida: ¡Viva la Vidal/Long Live Life!, paintings by Frida Kahlo, Marshall Cavendish (New York, NY), 2007. Diego: Bigger than Life, illustrated by David Diaz, Mar¬ shall Cavendish (New York, NY), 2009. Work represented in anthologies, including Writers in the Kitchen, compiled by Tricia Gardella, Boyd's Mill Press, 1998; Period Pieces: Stories for Girls, selected by Erzi Deak and Kristin Embry Litchman, HarperCol¬ lins (New York, NY), 2003; Once upon a Cuento, ed¬ ited by Lyn Miller-Lachman, Curbstone Press, 2003; and Translations: New Poems Inspired by Art from Around the World, edited by Jan Greenberg, Harry N. Abrams (New York, NY), 2007. Contributor to periodi¬ cals, including Faces and Spider. Sidelights In books such as Shake It, Morena!; and Other Folk¬ lore from Puerto Rico as well as the elementary-grade novel In the Shade of the Níspero Tree, Carmen T. Bernier-Grand shares her Hispanic culture, particularly that of Puerto Rico, where she herself grew up. The lives of migrant farmworker advocate César Chavez and twentieth-century Mexican muralist Diego Rivera are the focus of César: ¡Sí, se puede!/Yes, We Can! and Diego: Bigger than Life, both of which feature a free- verse text and colorful folk-style paintings by David Diaz. Another picture-book biography by Bernier- Grand, Frida: ¡Viva la Vida!/Long Live Life!, features paintings by the book's subject, noted Mexican surreal¬ ist artist Frida Kahlo. In the twenty-six poems she cre¬ ates to accompany Kahlo's photographs and self- reflective paintings, Bernier-Grand "creates an accessible intimacy," noted School Library Journal con¬ tributor Wendy Lukehart, as well as "a well-researched, yet personal and compelling, portrait of an icon." Image Not Viewable Online Winner of a Pura Belpré Honor Book designation, César goes beyond the facts of Chavez's life to focus on the values and desire for justice that motivated him to ad¬ vocate on behalf of North America's migrant farmworkers. Interspersed by quotes from the labor leader himself, César combines "lyrical language" and Diaz's "stylized, computer-drawn, folk-art" images, ac¬ cording to School Library Journal contributor Scott La Counte. The artist's "softly beautiful and illuminating illustrations add much to this already rich celebration of Cesar's life and legacy," wrote a Kirkus Reviews writer in appraising César, and in Booklist Jennifer Mattson concluded that Bernier-Grand "lend[s] texture and im¬ mediacy to an inspiring life story." Readers are brought back to Puerto Rico in 1961 in In the Shade of the Níspero Tree. Here fourth graders Ter¬ esa and Ana are best friends, but differences in their parents' wealth—Ana's family is poor, while Teresa's Mami aspires to be accepted by her community's more- affluent families. When the girls have a falling out, Ter¬ esa decides that she is better than Ana. Then Mami en¬ rolls her daughter in the Academia, a costly private school. Now the tables turn, however, as Teresa and her mom find themselves excluded from the social activi¬ ties of the school's country-club set. Hurt by this injus¬ tice, mother and daughter realize that they have caused their old friends a similar hurt in a novel that "could spark lively classroom discussion," according to Booklist contributor Linda Perkins. Praising In the Shade of the Níspero Tree as a "thoughtful" story, a Publishers Weekly contributor added that Bernier-Grand's "portrait of Teresa ... is especially well realized," and Perkins cited the book for its "very clear message about intoler¬ ance." Bernier-Grand once commented: "Today I am celebrat¬ ing public libraries. Everybody is rich in the United States. We are rich even when we are poor, because we can read books for free. "Today I am celebrating bookstores. When I was grow¬ ing up on Ponce, Puerto Rico, our tiny bookstore had no children's books, but it sold comics. "Today I am celebrating Little Lulu, Archie, and Donald Duck. I looked at the pictures and made up my own stories. "Today I am celebrating my sister who told me that I was a liar because I was always making up stories. I had to prove to her that I wasn't. "Today I am celebrating authors and books and the monkeys in [Esphyr Slobodkina's] Caps for Sale, the first story I remember reading in English in a school anthology. "Today I am celebrating my mother who recited 'Mar¬ garita está linda la mar' and sat by me every night so I could read out loud to her in English, my weakest subject. It wasn't until years later I realized that she didn't know English. But her warmth stayed with me. .<> m к -» ê гптта ΐίττΐβ in nn Cover of Bernier-Granďs biography Frida Kahlo, which features paint¬ ings by the famous Mexican artist. (Marshall Cavendish, 2007. Reproduced by pennission.) "Today I am celebrating my father who told me I could be whatever I wanted to be. I could even be a mathematician. That I became. And I learned to re¬ search and use logic to plot my stories. "Today I am celebrating the cute Oregonian who sat by me at a math party at the University of Connecticut. We married and moved to Oregon, where I began to write. "Today I am celebrating my now-grownup children who heard my stories again and again. "Today I am celebrating the encouragement and help from the members of my writing groups. "Today I am celebrating the educators who told the publishers that we needed books that reflected diversity in the classrooms. "Today I am celebrating the publishers who opened the doors to diversity. "Today I am celebrating my readers, because they are the best awards." Biographical and Critical Sources PERIODICALS Booklist, April 1, 1994, Hazel Rochman, review of Juan Bobo: Four Folktales from Puerto Rico, p. 1465; May 15, 1995, Chris Sherman, review of Poet and Politi¬ cian of Puerto Rico: Don Luis Muñoz Marín, p. 1641; April 1, 1999, Linda Perkins, review of In the Shade of the Níspero Tree, p. 1412; April 15, 2002, Linda Perkins, review of Shake It, Morena!; and Other Folk¬ lore from Puerto Rico, p. 1395; October 15, 2004, Jennifer Mattson, review of César: ¡Sí, se puede!/Yes, We Can!, p. 400; November 1, 2007, Gillian Engberg, review of Frida: ¡Viva la Vidal/Long Live Life!, p. 57. Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 2002, review of Shake It, Morena!, p. 406; September 1, 2004, review of César, p. 860; October 15, 2007, review of Frida. Publishers Weekly, April 25, 1994, review of Juan Bobo, p. 78; March 15, 1999, review of In the Shade of the Níspero Tree, p. 59. School Library Journal, October, 2004, Scott La Counte, review of César, p. 138; December, 2007, Wendy Lukehart, review of Frida, p. 149. ONLINE Carmen T. Bernier-Grand Home Page, http://www.carmen- t.com (June 15, 2009).