Marisa de Jesús Paolicelli was born and raised in Bethlehem Pennsylvania and is of Puerto Rican descent. Marisa’s parents were born and raised in Arecibo, Puerto Rico and migrated to the United States in the early 1950′s. A graduate of Liberty High School, Marisa’s hobbies and interests include art, theater, reading, writing, and volleyball. Marisa attended Northampton Area College, and she and her husband, Vincent, presently reside in Pennsylvania.
Marisa’s sincere desire is to promote a greater understanding of Puerto Rico – the Island of Enchantment – in a positive fashion, and to stimulate interest in cultural diversity. As a child, Marisa could not remember being exposed to books about Puerto Rico. As she researched and collected information for There’s a Coquí in My Shoe! she gained greater understanding and appreciation of her Puerto Rican culture. She wants to share this vital information not only with Puerto Rican children, but also with children of all backgrounds. In addition, Marisa would like to strengthen the image of Puerto Rican children and help build a sense of pride and belonging of their heritage.
There’s a Coquí in My Shoe! is Marisa’s first children’s picture storybook. In addition to writing There’s a Coquí in My Shoe!, Marisa served as the art director and title designer of the book. She enjoys wearing the many hats and is fascinated by the publishing process. She was thrilled by There’s a Coquí in My Shoe! winning two awards at the International Latino Book Awards. Marisa is presently at work on additional children’s books. Marisa’s books are on expression of herself and a gift to all children.
Gratitude & Thanks
First and foremost, Marisa extends her sincerest thanks to the Lord for fulfilling her dreams, from opening so many doors from the inception of this project to providing many wonderful and supportive people along her path.
- Chi Chi Rodriguez - Thank you from the bottom of my heart for believing in There’s a Coqui in My Shoe!; believing in it so much that you created your own imprint to publish it! Watching you on television as a teenager, my father would say “Now, there’s a great man and role model!” A man that makes us proud to be Puerto Ricans!” I never forgot his words nor you, Chi Chi. And I could never have imagined that many years later, I would be invited to your golf resort to meet you, to sit across the table from you, and on a hand shake deal your publishing There’s a Coqui in My Shoe! If only my father were alive to share that moment. My father was right, Chi Chi – You’re awesome!
- Dr. Rafael L. Joglar - I couldn’t thank you enough for providing such invaluable information on the correct colorings and markings of every coqui species depicted in There’s a Coquí in My Shoe! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Marisa greatly appreciates all those who provided glowing endorsements and supported the book with their purchase, helping it to become a success; and to illustrator, Tanja Bauerle, for making Marisa’s written word come to life.