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Jovita Wore Pants

The Story of a Mexican Freedom Fighter



Scholastic Press

(pub.3.7.2023) 48 pages

Author: Aida Salazar

Illustrator: Molly Mendoza

Character: Jovita Valdovinos


" Jovita dreamed of wearing pants! She hated the big skirts Abuela made her wear. She wanted to scale the tallest mesquite tree on her rancho, ride her horse, and feel the wind curl her face into a smile.

When her father and brothers joined the Cristero War to fight for religious freedom, Jovita wanted to go, too. Forbidden, she defied her father’s rules – and society’s – and found a clever way to become a trailblazing revolutionary, wearing pants!

Tantalizing taste:

" Sorrow swirled inside Jovita's heart.

Her sadness found sympathy with other Cristeros, who met one evening to form a plan for justice.

When she returned, Jovita cut her long hair short. Next, she put on Ramon's cotton shirt, overalls, riding boots, and wide-brimmed straw hat. Jovita was reborn as a pants-wearing coronel named Juan. She was ready to reignite the revolution."

And something more: Aida Salazar, in the Author's Note explains that "Jovita Valdovinos was my distant great-aunt...My mother says that Jovita was a 'gran señora, a "great lady," and that whileshe was relatively small in stature, her presence was as large as the Mexican mesquite tree which they sat when she visited.

The information in this book is taken primarily from Joviat's memoir, as well as from anecdotes and personal interviews. No person is entirely good or bad, and Jovita's life was as rich as it was complex."


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