Estela's Swap

By Studio City Sun

While no Southern California locale is mentioned by name, Simi Valley author Alexis O’Neill has set this simple, charming tale at a swap meet where Santa Ana winds blow-where, indeed, those winds provide a major ‘plot’ twist at the end. The story revolves around young Estela, who hopes to earn enough money working her father’s booth to buy dancing lessons at the Ballet Folklorico. Sanchez provides not only blowing palm trees in the background, but a color scheme that is both saturated and muated all at once-with the vivid exception of a bright orange skirt that comes to represent Estela’s Folklorico hopes. It’s a tale about perserverance and generosity, though my in-house 8 year old expert also took to the swap meet marketing tips: “If you’re a kid who wants to learn how to make money,” he averred, “read this book!”
Mark London Williams
Studio City Sun