San Antonio Book Festival - Xavier Garza
Courtesy of Xavier Garza
Book Festival Author

Xavier Garza

Xavier Garza was born in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas. He is an enthusiastic author, artist, teacher, and storyteller whose work is a lively documentation of life, dreams, superstitions, and heroes in the bigger-than-life world of South Texas. He has received numerous recognitions including a Pura Belpré Honor and the Libro de las Americas Honor. His latest book is Vincent Ventura and the Curse of the Dancing Devil.

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Book by Xavier Garza

  • Vincent Ventura and the Curse of the Dancing Devil / Vincent Ventura y la maldición del diablo bailarín by Xavier Garza

    Vincent Ventura and the Curse of the Dancing Devil / Vincent Ventura y la maldición del diablo bailarín

    Loud music wakes Vincent up in the middle of the night, and he sees a red pickup truck pull in at the house across the street. A red-headed girl and a man decked out in a sparkly western shirt and cowboy hat get out, and he proceeds to two-step up and down the driveway before they go inside. Through the windows, Vincent can see them dancing in unison, the man downstairs and the girl upstairs. Their movements are virtually identical and they begin spinning faster and faster. Suddenly, he sees what looks like horns begin to sprout from the man’s head! It seems there’s another monster mystery begging to be solved!

    The next day at the library, Vincent reads about a border urban legend involving a handsome stranger who is really a dancing devil! He also meets a new student, Lilith del Diablo, who he saw the night before! Soon Vincent and his friends have gained Lily’s trust and she tells them her biological father, Luciano del Diablo, is intent on forcing her to become his partner in crime terrorizing girls at dance halls along the US-Mexico border. Meanwhile, Vincent finds his mother’s trunk in the garage and is shocked to find it’s full of monster-fighting tools—silver coins, a slingshot, wooden stakes—and a journal with information on the various beasts. Why would she have this information? Does he come from a long line of ancestors who fight unnatural demons? Is that why evil creatures are constantly moving in across the street?!

    With help from his mother’s diary, Vincent concocts a plan to save Lily from the dancing devil, but it’s going to take all his friends’ and cousins’ wits to make it work. This bilingual book for intermediate readers, the fifth installment in Garza’s Monster Fighter Mystery series, follows the dangerous battle between a seasoned devil and one unsure of her powers, a witch owl and several very determined kids!

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