About the Book
At Redwood also lives Mayor Toro, a high school sophomore whose family arrived from Panamá fifteen years ago. Mayor sees in Maribel something others do not: that beyond her lovely face, and beneath the damage she's sustained, is a gentle, funny, and wise spirit. But as the two grow closer, violence casts a shadow over all their futures in America.
Peopled with deeply sympathetic characters, this poignant yet unsentimental tale of young love tells a riveting story of unflinching honesty and humanity that offers a resonant new definition of what it means to be an American. An instant classic is born.
“We're the unknown Americans, the ones no one even wants to know, because they've been told they're supposed to be scared of us and because maybe if they did take the time to get to know us, they might realize that we're not that bad, maybe even that we're a lot like them. And who would they hate then?”
The good news is that I am pleased to report that Maribel hasn't gone insane. I really liked this book. I think it's something that should be read in school, if I'm honest. But there was one thing that really bothered me in it... how can people not like tacos? I get the people being frustrated that everyone assumed they're from Mexico - that makes sense. This story has people from Panama, Guatemala, etc. that are all interconnected through their different stories. But I just don't know if I can trust people who don't like tacos.
Aside from that silliness, this book is a simplified version of what many immigrants go through to come and stay in this country. There's a whole array of stories and characters... and I really think people should read this with an open mind to get a better understanding of these lives.
Probably the most important thing I learned from reading this book is that Maribel is a traitor. She KNEW a thing was going to happen... and she KNEW I was about to read it. But she offered me no warnings. And just waited for me to get to it... and then I'm sobbing so hard. And she's probably over there, cackling at my suffering. In conclusion, she's a hoodlum and this book has some super feels in it.