Pam Muñoz Ryan
I had heard about this book so much that I just had to read it, even though it is meant for a younger audience. I love the cover art, her rising above her challenges, with the roses of memory. Esperanza means ‘hope’ in Spanish, a very fitting title for this novel.
Some of my favorite parts:
Anza and her father listening to the earth’s heart beat, then later on Anza and Miguel. Anza had to find her inner peace, and be around those she loved, to be able to hear the heart. Anza giving her doll to Isabel after she was not chosen for the Queen of May. Miguel bringing back Abuelita, a happy ending at last.
This is a true story about the author’s grandmother.
“Esperanza Ortega possesses all the treasures a young girl could want: fancy dresses; a beautiful home filled with servants in the bountiful region of Aguascalientes, Mexico; and the promise of one day rising to Mama’s position and presiding over all of Rancho de las Rosas. But a sudden tragedy shatters that dream, forcing Esperanza and Mama to flee to California and settle in a Mexican farm labor camp. There they confront the challenges of hard work, acceptance by their own people, and economic difficulties brought on by the Great Depression. When Mama falls ill from Valley Fever and a strike for better working conditions threatens to uproot their new life, Esperanza must relinquish her hold on the past and learn to embrace a future ripe with the riches of family and community. Pam Muñoz Ryan eloquently portrays the Mexican workers’ plight in this abundant and passionate novel that gives voice to those who have historically been denied one.”
~ Scholastic Press