Friday, February 26, 2010

Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan

Book review by Lily

I read the book Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan. The main characters are Mama, Papa, Esperanza, Miguel, Abuelita, and Isabel. It takes place in 1924 in Mexico and California. In this book a very tragic thing happens to Esperanza when a family member of hers passes away, her papa. Her uncle tried to force her mama to marry him but she said no. Then, he burned down her house, so she said I will think about it in order not to get hurt anymore. Finally she said yes but after that she made a plan to escape to California. Mama and Esperanza went with Miguel and his parents to California, but they had to leave Abuelita behind because she got hurt from the house fire. They met up with Miguel’s family in California and the next thing you know they moved in next door. Now they had to go to work since they lived in a Mexican migrant farming camp. Esperanza didn’t know how to work in the house so Isabel, her cousin, had to teach her how to work in the house doing chores and taking care of babies. Mama got sick from a dust storm so Esperanza had to go to work in the fields and packing plants. Then a strike happens. Esperanza and Miguel get in to a fight so Miguel leaves California, and no one knows where he went. Then mama gets better and Miguel returned with Abuelita and Esperanza learns that change can be good.

I loved this book! I liked it because it was a great book and it shows you that change can be good. My favorite part was when Miguel got back home to California with Abuelita. When Isabel learned to crochet and Esperanza said “don’t ever be afraid to start over” was another favorite part of the book. This book reminds me of Homeless Bird because both girls have to go live in another place, learn how to take care of themselves, and learn different jobs. I found it interesting and surprising that she bought a piñata that looked like one she had back home. She was going to give it to her sick mama. Then some strikers came up to her asking for food and she looked at the kids. All of them looked so sad she gave them the caramel filed piñata. I would recommend this book to everyone in my class, but I mostly recommend it to the girls in my class because it is about a girl that has to basically start her life over in a new place.

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