Emilio is not only new in his school, he’s new to the entire country. He and his family have just come from Central America to Houston, and everything is terribly different in the big city—not only the surroundings, but the language and customs they find here. Uncomfortable with his looks, his size, his unfamiliarity with everything, Emilio shrinks into the shadows in his classes. He does find friends among other immigrants, such as Ali, and he tries to keep out of the way of the rough crowd. But only when his teacher introduces him to the world of numbers does he begin to find himself. Yet there is danger even in embracing the world of math studies, too, and Emilio once again faces hardship and isolation. Emilio is a tale of overcoming fear of the unknown to adapt and prevail over circumstances through will and perseverance. As Emilio makes his own way in this new world, his trials, failures, and successes become a model for all young readers who would accept and embrace responsibility for their own lives.