Lucina, book, and illustration

An understanding of two different languages can be gained through bilingual fiction. "Payshapes and the Bear" is a collection of short stories presented in both Spanish and English for young readers to help them gain a greater grasp of both languages. With charming illustrations throughout, the stories are sure to bring smiles to child readers, making "Payshapes and the Bear" a must for any bilingual children's fiction collection.
Midwest Book Review, July 2009

“Payshapes and the Bear have had a place in my heart ever since I met them. They are beloved characters with a life of their own.”
—Martha Cerda
winner of the 2007 Ibargüengoitia Prize
for her novel, Señuel

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Born in the United States, Lucina Kathmann has lived in the Mexican town of San Miguel de Allende for over 30 years. In her position as an International Vice President of International PEN, she travels the world meeting writers working in interesting and dangerous situations. At home in San Miguel, she is the is the mother of eight children, six of whom she and her partner Charles Kuschinski inherited one night 20 years ago when Lucina’s best friend died in childbirth.

Lucina is a novelist, short story writer, journalist, and essayist in Spanish and English. She also edits the trilingual publication Network/Le Réseau/La Red, by and about women writers.

Payshapes and the Bear
is an Award-winning Finalist in the Children's Fiction category of
The International Book Awards, 2011

finalist award

Buy Payshapes from Amazon

See the video trailer

Hear Lucina read a chapter in English and in Spanish

Download free pdf files—Discussing Payshapes
Author's translation notes

Payshapes and the Bear
is a family effort that began with two-year-old Daniel demanding stories before he would go to sleep. Dani created the Payshapes character, his older brother Nicholas helped develop the story ideas, and Lucina wrote the tales based on these imaginative bedtime narrations.


Payshapes and the Bear: award-winning bilingual children's stories • Spanish and English texts on facing pages • stories by Lucina Kathmann • illustrations by Fabián Nanni • fantasy adventures for young readers • elementary fiction • free downloads • Lucina Kathmann's translation notes • audio chapter * free discussion guide • middle-grade fiction • engaging animal characters • dragons • published by ChironBooks