|Barefoot dreams of Petra Luna|
Author: Dobbs, Alda P.
A tale of one family's perilous journey to cross the U.S. border during the Mexican Revolution that is every bit as relevant and heartbreaking today.
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|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.80
Points: 7.0 Quiz: 512639
Kirkus Reviews (08/01/21)
School Library Journal (+) (00/09/21)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 05/15/2021 *Starred Review* Each day in the village of Esperanzas—in 1913, during the Mexican Revolution—12-year-old Petra chops wood to sell. After Mama passed away and Papa was taken, forced to become a soldier for the Federales in the revolution, Petra has worked hard to keep her family safe, as she promised she would. But when Federales descend on them, her siblings and their abuela barely escape with their lives, and Petra is forced to leave behind the home she has always known, clinging to the hope that one day Papa will find them. Journeying on foot, Petra and her family come across others who are fleeing to America for safety. Along the way, Petra endures incredible hardships but also forges new friendships, comes to terms with her grief and loss, and discovers her own strength and capability to make her dreams of learning to write come true. Dobbs’ wrenching debut, about family, loss, and finding the strength to carry on, illuminates the harsh realities of war, the heartbreaking disparities between the poor and the rich, and the racism faced by Petra and her family. Readers will love Petra, who is as strong as the black-coal rock she carries with her and as beautiful as the diamond hidden within it. - Copyright 2021 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 09/01/2021 Gr 5 Up—Set during the Mexican Revolution, mostly during 1913, this book follows Petra and her grandmother, her sister, and her baby brother as they flee the Federales after the burning of their village. Loosely based on the stories from the author's own family, the novel weaves traditional Mestizo tales and desert knowledge, historical events, and original storytelling. The book is compelling, with well-paced action that flows and keeps readers engaged. The lyrical writing perfectly evokes the loneliness of the desert, the companionship of fellow refugees, and the bravery of Petra. Throughout the journey, Petra struggles to recognize that she is a leader in her family and must choose new paths even while respecting and balancing the place of her grandmother's traditional knowledge. The conclusion is thrilling, though cheapened slightly as Petra pedantically explains what she has learned. End materials include an author's note on Dobbs's own family's experiences and her research methods, as well as a time line of historical events. VERDICT This beautifully written and exciting story of a family fleeing during the Mexican revolution offers a new perspective in historical fiction. An excellent addition to all collections.—Elizabeth Nicolai, Anchorage P.L., AK - Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.