Article Title

Esperanza Rising


Emma Patton


Excellent, Primary, Intermediate, Pam Munoz Ryan, Immagration, Mexico, Spanish, Grief, Loss, Equality, Change, Class, Poverty

Document Type

Book Review


Esperanza Ortega lives in Mexico in a grand house on a vineyard, and she lives a life of plenty. But when her father is killed and her house burns down, life as Esperanza knows it is forever changed. Her uncle suddenly controls all the land that they live on, and he promises to take care of Esperanza and her mother if her mother agrees to marry him. Penniless but determined to live their own life, Esperanza and her mother leave Mexico with the aid of their former servants and head to the United States. They can now start a new life, but they have a new position in society, too. Now, Esperanza’s mother picks and packages produce for low wages. They have to learn to live as equals among the struggling immigrant families. Amidst sickness, labor strikes, and scarcity, Esperanza must find the tenacity to make her own decisions. Where she once couldn’t even bathe herself without the help of servants, she now must rise to the occasion of forming a new destiny.