Friday, March 19, 2021

Girls Can Too be knights!

I love sharing books written by friends. I met Terry around a decade ago at the Highlights children’s writers workshop in Chautauqua. We sat in on many of the same workshops, and talked STEM writing during lunches. So when she told me she was working on a chapter book series, I couldn’t wait to read it!

Definitely Dominguita: Knight of the Cape 
by Terry Catasus Jennings; illus. by Fatima Anaya
144 pages; ages 6-9
Aladdin, 2021

Dominguita Melendez is definitely a girl after my own heart. She loves to read, especially tales of adventure and chivalry in her grandmother’s books. So rather than playing, she spends her recess period reading Don Quijote.

So when the bully sneers that girls can’t be knights, Dominguita sets out to prove him wrong. After all, Joan of Arc was a knight. Right? 

With a helmet and cape and sense of justice, Dom sets off to seek adventure, even if that means helping people carry groceries along the way. She acquires a squire, aptly named Pancho Sanchez, and a trusty steed (of sorts), scrounges some armor and manages to convince a neighbor to knight her with his trusty sword.  Then she is definitely 100% ready for heroic adventures…

… which turn out a bit differently than expected. I don’t want to spoil the story, but let me just say lots of cookies are involved, Dom gains a crew of stout-hearted friends, and there is a real brave and true rescue.

This is a fun book that kicks off a new series about Dom and her friends. The stories are based on classic tales: Treasure Island, The Three Musketeers… I’m sure there will be more, as abuela had many tales to share.

Want a taste of the story? Visit Terry’s website and check out the trailer. She’s also got some book-related classroom activities. Then, head over to the GROG Blog for an interview with Terry.

Thanks for dropping by today. On Monday we'll be hanging out at Marvelous Middle Grade Monday with other  bloggers. It's over at Greg Pattridge's blog, Always in the Middle, so hop over to see what other people are reading. Review copy provided by the publisher.

I'll be back with more books next month!


  1. I love Terry because she is so encouraging to other writers. Can't wait to read her series books.

  2. That's so cool that you know Terry. This sounds like the start of a fun series. I just reserved it at the library.

  3. What a fun series for kids. I love that Dominguita has a strong sense of self and a desire to help others. Readers will have fun imagining this story. Thanks for sharing!

  4. I've heard some good buzz about this book and your thoughts added to my desire to find a copy. Great central character. Thanks for featuring on MMGM.

  5. I love books for early middle-grade emerging readers. This looks like a particularly fun series for those kids. Thanks for telling me about the series. I will be checking these books out.

  6. What a fun cover! Sounds like the start of a great series. I am definitely going to have to check it out. Thanks for the introduction. :)

  7. This sounds wonderful! I love Don Quixote, and this sounds like such a fun take on that story. And just from your description, I can tell I'll like Dominquita. Thanks for featuring this!

  8. Thanks for sharing this. Love the Don Quixote connection :)

  9. What a fun (and inspiring)-sounding story! I love that the stories are based on classic books—I don't know that I've ever seen Don Quijote referenced in a kids' book before! It's also very cool that you know the author. Thanks for the great review!

    1. She even tilts at a windmill. Dom loves Don Quijote because her Abuela read her the books. She brought kid's versions from Cuba and read them to Dom. When Abuela has to move away because she is getting forgetful and can't stay alone in Dom's house, then Dom reads her books so that she can still be close to Abuela. Once I figured that, the rest of the book was a breeze