Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Children's Fiction Values & Virtues

Tricycle /hc

by (author) Elisa Amado

illustrated by Alfonso Ruano

Groundwood Books Ltd
Initial publish date
May 2007
Values & Virtues, Homelessness & Poverty, Caribbean & Latin America
Recommended Age
6 to 9
Recommended Grade
1 to 4
Recommended Reading age
6 to 9
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    May 2007
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it

Out of print

This edition is not currently available in bookstores. Check your local library or search for used copies at Abebooks.


A young girl faces a difficult decision in this beautifully illustrated story about class and conscience. Margarita lives in a mansion. When she climbs her favorite tree, she can look down into the beautiful garden below. She can also see the small house next door where her friend Rosario and her family live. One day she sees Rosario and her brother dragging her tricycle into their yard and hiding it under a pile of boxes. Margarita decides to lie to protect her friends.

This sensitive story, illustrated in magic-realist style, powerfully presents complex issues of friendship, maturity and social standing.

About the authors

Elisa Amado's profile page

Alfonso Ruano is the illustrator of The Composition by Antonio Skármeta, winner of the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award and the UNESCO Tolerance Award and an Américas Award Commended title; Tricycle (El Triciclo) by Elisa Amado, a USBBY Outstanding International Book; and Somos como las nubes / We Are Like the Clouds by Jorge Argueta, which was featured on many lists, including USBBY’s Outstanding International Books and ALA Notable Children’s Books. After three decades as the art director for Grupo SM, the world’s largest publisher of Spanish-language children’s books, he has left to devote more time to illustration and painting.

Alfonso Ruano's profile page


  • Commended, Americas Award Commended List
  • Commended, USBBY Outstanding International Books

Editorial Reviews

Lush, feathery paintings bring out every leaf...The story of innocence lost rings true in its understatement and psychological complexity...

Criticas Magazine

...a provocative story that confronts complicated social issues with a minimal number of words and pictures...a splendid book...

Resource Links

...the situation is realistic and universal. Ruano's signature style...complements Amado's quieter story...

Multicultural Review

The text is spare, and the richly colored acrylic just on the edge of magical realism. While there is no overt message, there is much to talk about.


In true picture-book form, Ruano's illustrations add context and detail to Amado's muted, understated narrative.

School Library Journal

...[a] powerful and sensitive story...

Paper Tigers

...this poignant story introduces young readers to the realities of poverty...The illustrations on each page are quiet and matter-of-fact; they support a strong message conveyed in the storybook - a loss of innocence, perceptions of the poor, and childhood fears. This book provides a gateway for conversation with youngsters around a serious issue in our world - the gap between the rich and the poor. Highly Recommended.

CM Magazine

Other titles by

Other titles by