MILWAUKEE — Spanish music and dancing filled a corner of the UW Milwaukee campus on Thursday afternoon. The "Latinx Placita" was the University's kick-off celebration for Hispanic Heritage Month. The placita also feature various vendors.
One of those vendors was La Revo Books where Valeria Cerda could be found telling customers about her favorite books by latino/a authors.
"We have tons of books that are both in Spanish and Bilingual," Cerda said.
La Revo Books also sells English-language books, but the store focuses on books by and about the Latinx and BIPOC communities.
The store was founded and is owned by Cerda and her sister, the daughters of Mexican immigrants.
"La Revo Books provides literature that I didn't have as a young person. I didn't have a lot of access to books or children's books that were completely in Spanish," Cerda said.
According to UW Madison's Cooperative Children's Book Center, in 2021 just 7% of books were about Latinx characters.
Cerda says being able to share stories from her culture is a revolutionary act in itself.
"If you even go back to the 1400s when Mexicans were colonized, our books were burned by the Spanish. It's always been a form of violence against us to have our knowledge and our stories taken away from us. So for us, this is our way of reestablishing that we are allowed to have access to our own stories," Cerda said.
That act of revolution is also how she and her sister got the name for their store.
"La Revo is short for the revolution - is Spanish. The name reflects us because we want to lift up the revolutions that brought us here and also how revolutionary it is to have literature that's about you and reflects your culture," Cerda said.
La Revo doesn't have a storefront but you can buy books from the store online and at their various pop-ups across Milwaukee.
To kick off Hispanic Heritage Month, you can find La Revo at several events this weekend:
- Thursday 5-8pm at Latino Arts Inc.
- Friday 12-1pm at Milwaukee City Hall
- Friday 4-8pm at Deer District
- Saturday 9am-5pm at El Grito Car Show
- Saturday 4:30-9pm at the Brewers game
- Sunday 11am-6pm at the Cooperage