With humor and sensitivity, a debut novelist explores the coming of age of a girl caught between two cultures as she finds the courage to forge a new destiny. "Miss, will you be my Amiga?" Amiga means "friend" in Spanish, but at the youth center, it meant a lady to take you places. I never asked myself if two people as different as Miss and me could ever really be amigas. When Jacinta Juarez is paired with a rich, famous mentor, she is swept away from the diapers and dishes of her own daily life into a world of new experiences. But crossing la linea into Miss's world is scary. Half of Jacinta aches for the comfort of MamA and the familiar safety of the barrio, while the other half longs to embrace a future that offers more than cleaning stuff for white people. When her family is torn apart, Jacinta needs to bring the two halves of herself together to win back everything she's lost. Can she channel the power she's gained from her mentor and the strength she's inherited from MamA to save her shattered home life?
by Judith Byron Schachner
by John Ritter
"Marisol Ramirez's narration reflects the many facets of middle schooler Jacinta Juarez's character, letting listeners hear her neediness and immaturity while also letting her intelligence and strength shine through. Ramirez moves beautifully between English and Spanish and various levels of accents to reflect characters' backgrounds. When a news anchor takes an interest in Jacinta, she finds herself straddling her community of undocumented immigrants and the world of privilege the journalist exposes her to. Ramirez keeps listeners on Jacinta's side, even when some of her selfish decisions lead to serious consequences for her family. Emotionally complicated and sensitive, Jacinta's story gives voice to the types of struggles undocumented immigrants and their families face in the United States. A.F. © AudioFile 2016, Portland, Maine"
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