Dancing Home

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Ages 9-12
13
Free sample

In this timely tale of immigration, two cousins learn the importance of family and friendship.

A year of discoveries culminates in a performance full of surprises, as two girls find their own way to belong.

Mexico may be her parents’ home, but it’s certainly not Margie’s. She has finally convinced the other kids at school she is one-hundred percent American—just like them. But when her Mexican cousin Lupe visits, the image she’s created for herself crumbles.

Things aren’t easy for Lupe, either. Mexico hadn’t felt like home since her father went North to find work. Lupe’s hope of seeing him in the United States comforts her some, but learning a new language in a new school is tough. Lupe, as much as Margie, is in need of a friend.

Little by little, the girls’ individual steps find the rhythm of one shared dance, and they learn what “home” really means. In the tradition of My Name is Maria Isabel—and simultaneously published in English and in Spanish—Alma Flor Ada and her son Gabriel M. Zubizarreta offer an honest story of family, friendship, and the classic immigrant experience: becoming part of something new, while straying true to who you are.
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About the author

Alma Flor Ada, an authority on multicultural and bilingual education, is the recipient of the 2012 Virginia Hamilton Literary Award, and in 2014 she was honored by the Mexican government with the prestigious OHTLI Award. She is the author of numerous award-winning books for young readers, including Dancing Home with Gabriel Zubizarreta, My Name Is María Isabel, Under the Royal Palms (Pura Belpré Medal), Where the Flame Trees Bloom, and The Gold Coin (Christopher Award Medal). She lives in California, and you can visit her at AlmaFlorAda.com.

Gabriel M. Zubizarreta draws from his experiences of raising his three wonderful daughters in his writing. He hopes his books will encourage young people to author their own destinies. He coauthored Love, Amalia and Dancing Home with Alma Flor Ada. Gabriel lives in Northern California with his family and invites you to visit his website at GabrielMZubizarreta.com.
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3.9
13 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Jul 12, 2011
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Pages
160
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ISBN
9781442423961
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Juvenile Fiction / Family / General
Juvenile Fiction / General
Juvenile Fiction / People & Places / Mexico
Juvenile Fiction / People & Places / United States / Hispanic & Latino
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Winner of the International Latino Book Award

“An incredibly heartfelt depiction of immigrants and refugees in a land full of uncertainty.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Insightful, realistic picture...especially important reading for today’s children.” —Booklist
“Fans of The Only Road will appreciate...while teachers and librarians may find the text useful to counter unsubstantiated myths about Central Americans fleeing to the US.” —School Library Journal

Jaime and Ángela discover what it means to be living as undocumented immigrants in the United States in this timely sequel to the Pura Belpré Honor Book The Only Road.

After crossing Mexico into the United States, Jaime Rivera thinks the worst is over. Starting a new school can’t be that bad. Except it is, and not just because he can barely speak English. While his cousin Ángela fits in quickly, with new friends and after-school activities, Jaime struggles with even the idea of calling this strange place “home.” His real home is with his parents, abuela, and the rest of the family; not here where cacti and cattle outnumber people, where he can no longer be himself—a boy from Guatemala.

When bad news arrives from his parents back home, feelings of helplessness and guilt gnaw at Jaime. Gang violence in Guatemala means he can’t return home, but he’s not sure if he wants to stay either. The US is not the great place everyone said it would be, especially if you’re sin papeles—undocumented—like Jaime. When things look bleak, hope arrives from unexpected places: a quiet boy on the bus, a music teacher, an old ranch hand. With his sketchbook always close by, Jaime uses his drawings to show what it means to be a true citizen.

Powerful and moving, this touching sequel to The Only Road explores overcoming homesickness, finding ways to connect despite a language barrier, and discovering what it means to start over in a new place that alternates between being wonderful and completely unwelcoming.
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