by Pam Muñoz Ryan
Esperanza Ortega's life is irrevocably altered after her father's sudden death and a fire that destroys the family ranch in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Esperanza and her mother flee to California, where they find employment at a farm labour camp. There they must endure hard work, economic difficulties, illness, and prejudice, as well as conflict among their own people. Set during the Great Depression, it is also a time of strikes, unions, forced deportations (even of U.S. citizens), and workers' rights.
Esperanza must also comes to term with the privileged past she left behind in order to embrace her future.