Kid lit superstar Raina Telgemeier is in some hot water for her depiction of California missions and Día de los Muertos in her new graphic novel Ghosts. This book is already a bestseller and has a huge holds lists at KCLS. Many, many kids will read it. And what will they learn about Día de los Muertos from this book? What will they learn about California missions? According to some critics, they'll get whitewashed versions of both.
To be fair, Ghosts has also gotten some very positive reviews (I enjoyed the story a lot myself). So instead of bypassing it altogether, read some informative books about Día De Los Muertos and The California Missions alongside Ghosts.
This may also be a great opportunity to seek out children's books by authors who are writing from their own cultural experience. I've created a list of #OwnVoices middle grade fiction that will point you to some great books to try.
For more controversy in kid lit, check out my previous post about slavery and sleep inducement.