Why did I love this book?
Pam Muñoz Ryan’s Esperanza Rising is a classic for a reason. Written in a simple but poetic voice, this compelling story grabbed me from the start. Esperanza lives a pampered life on her family’s ranch in Mexico—until the unthinkable happens. She is forced to flee with her mother to a camp in California, where the Great Depression has dried up all prospects. Weighed by grief and faced with her harsh new life, Esperanza can sink under the pressure and be broken—or she can rise. Absolutely beautiful, full of depth and hope.
When my uncle was dying, he asked me for more books that felt like The Eleventh Trade. This was the first one I sent him. But it’s really the other way around—I can only aspire to write with a thimble of Pam Muñoz Ryan’s power.