external image 043912042X.01._SY190_SCLZZZZZZZ_.jpgEsperanza Risingbelpre_medal.jpg
by Pam Muñoz Ryan
Scholastic, 2000
262 pages

Annotation: After a family tragedy, Esperanza and her mother lose the large home, ranch, and financial security they've known all their lives. Now they must travel to California during the Great Depression and work long hours for just enough money to survive. When her mother falls ill, Esperanza must find a way for them both to survive.

Topics: Great Depression, socioeconomic status, migrant workers, immigration, labor rights, cliques

Range of Appeal: Middle and high school students, especially those with diverse backgrounds (both culturally and economically)

Plot: Esperanza's father is killed by bandits on her 15th birthday. Her wealthy uncle brings his dead brothers will, which gives him the home and ranch they live on. The uncle offers Esperanza and her mother the chance to stay, but only if her mother marries the uncle. Her mother refuses and they flee with the family's servants for America. Esperanza instantly loses her status as the wealthy daughter of a plantation owner and must adapt to a new life of work - work that she is not entirely familiar with.

Evaluation/Mini-rationale: This is a good book for studying the great depression historically or immigration policy currently.

Additional Notes:

Links: LibraryThing, WorldCat