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Staff Pick
Esperanza Rising (Scholastic Gold)

Esperanza Rising (Scholastic Gold)

Current price: $7.99
Publication Date: May 1st, 2002
Scholastic Paperbacks
Off the Beaten Path Bookstore
2 on hand, as of Apr 14 8:53am
(Children's Classics / Award Winners)
On Our Shelves Now

Staff Reviews

In a world full of rags to riches stories, Esperanza Rising serves as a refreshing contrarian. Esperanza is the only daughter of a fabulously wealthy plantation owner in Mexico, but on the night of her birthday, her father is found dead on the road just outside of their property. Esperanza and her mother are then forced to flee from their home and immigrate to California. Within a few weeks, Esperanza is displaced from the heights of prosperity to the depths of American racism and poverty, and is forced to adapt to her new life as a farmhand.
Esperanza Rising is a beautiful, woman-led story about familial love, feminine strength, and what parts of life truly fulfill us.
· McKenna


A timeless immigration story and beloved, award-winning modern classic, perfect for fans of Kate DiCamillo and Rita Williams-Garcia.

Esperanza thought she'd always live a privileged life on her family's ranch in Mexico. She'd always have fancy dresses, a beautiful home filled with servants, and Mama, Papa, and Abuelita to care for her. But a sudden tragedy forces Esperanza and Mama to flee to California and settle in a Mexican farm labor camp. Esperanza isn't ready for the hard work, financial struggles brought on by the Great Depression, or lack of acceptance she now faces. When Mama gets sick and a strike for better working conditions threatens to uproot their new life, Esperanza must find a way to rise above her difficult circumstances--because Mama's life, and her own, depend on it.

About the Author

Pam Muñoz Ryan is the recipient of the Newbery Honor Medal and the Kirkus Prize for her New York Times bestselling novel, Echo, as well as the NEA's Human and Civil Rights Award and the Virginia Hamilton Literary Award for multicultural literature for her body of work. She is the 2018 U.S. nominee for the international Hans Christian Andersen Award and 2024 Children’s Literature Legacy Award Recipient. Her celebrated novels, Mañanaland, Echo, Esperanza Rising, The Dreamer, Riding Freedom, Becoming Naomi Léon, and Paint the Wind, have received countless accolades, among them two Pura Belpré Awards, a NAPPA Gold Award, a Jane Addams Children's Book Award, and two Américas Awards. Her acclaimed picture books include Amelia and Eleanor Go for a Ride and When Marian Sang, both illustrated by Brian Selznick, and Tony Baloney, illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham, as well as a beginning reader series featuring Tony Baloney. Ryan lives near San Diego, California, with her family.

Praise for Esperanza Rising (Scholastic Gold)

Awards and Praise for Esperanza Rising:

Pura Belpré Award Winner

Américas Award Honor Book

Jane Addams Children's Book Award Winner

Willa Cather Award Winner

Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist

ILA Notable Book for a Global Society

ALA Top Ten Best Books for Young Adults

New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing

A Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year

Children’s Literature Legacy Award Winner

* "Told in a lyrical, fairy tale-like style . . . Readers will be swept up." --Publishers Weekly, starred review

* "This well-written novel belongs in all collections." -- School Library Journal, starred review

"Ryan writes a moving story in clear, poetic language that children will sink into, and the book offers excellent opportunities for discussion and curriculum support." -- Booklist

"Ryan's... style is engaging, her characters appealing, and her story is one that-though a deep-rooted part of the history of California, the Depression, and thus the nation-is little heard in children's fiction. It bears telling to a wider audience." -- Kirkus Reviews