A world of adventure greets Elena and her little brother, Carlos, when they leave their Mexican seaside village to find their father, who has suddenly disappeared in the masses of immigrants attempting to make a living in Los Angeles in order to support families back home. Elena strikes out to find her father, without many leads or information, but armed with her well-developed English skills and luckily is hired by a wealthy Mexican-American family. Now able to support herself and Carlos, Elena begins the search for her father in earnest, encountering intrigue, crime and a mystery related to her father’s disappearance. In her desperate search Elena also finds friendship, love and the confidence to forge her own identity.
by Ofelia Dumas Lachtman
Publication Date: September 30, 1995
“It’s hard to imagine a teen who wouldn’t enjoy this and that’s significant because all the major players are Hispanic. . . Enough aspects of Elena’s Mexican culture are interwoven with the action to provide enlightenment.”—Booklist
OFELIA DUMAS LACHTMAN is the author of numerous bilingual children’s picture books, including Tina and the Scarecrow Skins / Tina y las pieles de espantapájaros (Piñata Books, 2002), Big Enough / Bastante grande (Piñata Books, 1998), and the Pepita series: Pepita and the Bully (Piñata Books, 2011), Pepita on Pepper Street / Pepita en la calle Pepper (Piñata Books, 2008), Pepita Packs Up / Pepita empaca (Piñata Books, 2005), Pepita Finds Out / Lo que Pepita descubre (Piñata Books, 2002), Pepita Takes Time / Pepita, siempre tarde (Piñata Books, 2000), Pepita Thinks Pink / Pepita y el color rosado (Piñata Books, 1998), and Pepita Talks Twice / Pepita habla dos veces (Piñata Books, 1995). Her novels for young adults include The Truth about Las Mariposas (Piñata Books, 2007), A Good Place for Maggie (Piñata Books, 2002), The Summer of El Pintor (Piñata Books, 2001), Call Me Consuelo (Piñata Books, 1997), The Girl from Playa Blanca (Piñata Books, 1995), and Campfire Dreams (Harlequin, 1987), for which she won the Benjamin Franklin Award for best young adult novel. She has also written one adult novel, A Shell for Angela (Arte Público Press, 1995).
Accelerated Reader Quiz #: 35020
ATOS English: 4.4
ATOS Interest Level: MG