A Mexican American girl recounts how her mother moved the family to America during the Mexican Revolution.
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Author and illustrator of numerous acclaimed picture-book biographies (Cleopatra; The Bard of Avon), Stanley turns her talents to preserving a more personal history, the experiences of a friend of her grandmother's. The sheltered daughter of a prosperous Mexican family, Elena has aspirations higher than those of her four sisters. While they concentrate on singing and embroidery, Elena studies secretly with a priest and learns to love books and "master the magic of numbers." Later, she refuses her father's attempts to marry her to a landowner's son and is finally given permission to marry her true love. Years later, during the Mexican Revolution, her determination stands her in good stead; widowed, she and her children escape from their beloved but pitifully ravaged country to carve a new life in California. Stanley's spare, graceful prose shapes a credible portrait of a person of singular insight and courage. Given the narrative's dearth of young characters and solitary focus on a grown woman, mature young adults and adults rather than middle-graders will be the most appreciative audience for this book. The format, however, may be problematic: the brevity of the text, printed in large type on small pages, could leave bookstore browsers wondering whether they're getting enough book for the buck. Ages 8-12.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Growing up in Mexico before the Revolution, strong-willed El‚na goes against Pap 's orders and the custom of the time to learn to read (``El‚na took to education like a bird to the air'') and to marry Pablo, a poor Indian with no inheritance (``There was a peacefulness about him that felt like ancient wisdom''). El‚na is a happy mother of four and Pablo has become a famous artisan (his sombreros are known even to Pancho Villa) when he dies suddenly in an accident. Taking to heart his deathbed prediction of a terrible war, El‚na flees her home and struggles as a poor immigrant so that her children can become Americans. In her first novel, Stanley (The True Adventure of Daniel Hall, 1995, etc.) makes El‚na a one- dimensional figure, but she's such a heroic proponent of following your own heart that she stands above the sentimental story and keeps it involving. (glossary) (Fiction. 8-12) -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Hyperion (Juv), 1996. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0786802561
Book Description Hyperion (Juv), 1996. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0786802561
Book Description Hyperion (Juv), 1996. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110786802561
Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 97807868025621.0