Groundwood Books Imprint Logo

Why Are You Doing That?

Written by Elisa Amado

Illustrated by Manuel Monroy

  • 28 Pages
  • 9781554987337
  • 8" x 7"
  • from grade JK to grade 2
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Lifestyles / Country Life


Publication Date June 01, 2014

Chepito is full of questions. Why is his mother cooking eggs and frying beans? Why is Manuel digging around the corn? Why is Ramón milking the cow? Why is Maria slapping dough between her hands? In this simply told story, a little boy learns all about food and where it comes from.

Following on the success of What Are You Doing? Elisa Amado and Manuel Monroy have created another gem of a picture book, this time about food — where it comes from, how we nurture food plants and animals, and what we eat to be healthy and strong.

Manuel Monroy sweetly depicts Chepito’s world — a rural community where people grow much of their own food and raise chickens and cows — giving young children a clear picture of the origins of foods they consume every day.

Includes a short glossary.

Selected for the Canadian Children's Book Centre Best Books for Kids and Teens 2014


Elisa Amado
Elisa Amado is a Guatemalan-born author and translator. She has written Un barrilete para el Día de los muertos / Barrilete: A Kite for the Day of the Dead, Cousins (Primas) and Tricycle (El triciclo), which is on the Américas Award Commended List and is a USBBY Outstanding International Book. Her most recent books are What Are You Doing? and Why Are You Doing That?. Elisa lives in Toronto, Ontario.

Manuel Monroy

Manuel Monroy is one of Mexico’s most accomplished illustrators whose work has appeared in children’s books, in magazines, on posters, and most recently in animation projects. He has won many awards, including the A la Orilla del Viento prize, given by the Fondo de Cultura Economica; the Noma Concours in Japan; a Gold World Medal for Art Direction at the New York Film Festival, and a Merit Mention from the Society of Publication Designers. His work has also been included on the IBBY Honour List and in the White Ravens catalogue. Manuel has illustrated many children’s books, which have been published in Canada and the United States, such as Daybreak, Nightfall (Alba y ocaso) and Rooster Gallo, both by poet Jorge Luján; When I Was a Boy Neruda Called Me Policarpo by Poli Delano; and What Are You Doing? by Elisa Amado. He has also exhibited his art in Mexico, Cuba, the Czech Republic, Italy, Japan and the Netherlands. He lives in Mexico City.


"An energetic, simple exploration of food’s journey from farm to table for today’s young locavores." Kirkus Reviews

"Using an earthy palette of greens, browns, and oranges, the pictures have a strong sense of place . . . [A] strong selection for libraries dedicated to maintaining diverse collections." School Library Journal

"What may appear to be a simple book about a child and his questions ends up being a very clever story about where food comes from as the farm to table movement grows, it is a wonderful lesson to teach young children. . . . Highly Recommended." CM Magazine

"Why Are You Doing That? not only tells a charming story, but, as an added benefit, shows young readers how their food winds up on their plate." National Post

"Together, Amado and Monroy present Chepito’s world as a pleasant and purposeful one where children, adults, animals, and crops are bound together in a traditional and appealing way of life." Quill & Quire