By Meg Medina (YA Medi)
One morning before school, some girl tells Piddy Sanchez that Yaqui Delgado hates her and wants to kick her ass. Piddy doesn’t know who Yaqui is, never mind what she’s done to tick her off, but Yaqui isn’t kidding around, so Piddy better watch her back. Is there any way for Piddy to survive without closing herself off or running away?
Lexile: HL700L; F&P: Z; HS
By Esmeralda Santiago (YA B Sant)
This memoir follows Esmeralda's childhood as she journeys from her native Puerto Rico to New York City. Esmeralda must learn how to take on an entirely new identity — without leaving her Puerto Rican self behind.
Lexile: 1020L; F&P: N/A, HS
By Guadalupe Garcia McCall (YA McCa)
When Lupita learns Mami has cancer, she is terrified by the possibility of losing her mother, the anchor of her close-knit family. Suddenly, being a high school student, starring in a play, and dealing with friends who don't always understand, becomes less important than doing whatever she can to save Mami's life.
Lexile: 990L; F&P: N/A, MS/HS
By Margarita Engle (YA 811.6 Engl)
Cuba has fought three wars for independence, and still she is not free. This history in verse creates a lyrical portrait of Cuba.
Lexile: NP; F&P: Z, HS
By Ashley Hope Pérez (YA Pere)
Loosely based on a school explosion that took place in New London, Texas, in 1937, this is the story of two teenagers—Naomi, who is Mexican, and Wash, who is black—and their dealings with race, segregation, love, and the forces that destroy people.
Lexile: HL660L, F&P: N/A, HS
By Matt de la Peña (YA Pena)
16-year-old Danny searches for his identity amidst the confusion of being half-Mexican and half-white while spending his summer with his cousin and new friends on the baseball fields and back alleys of San Diego County, California.
Lexile: 680L; F&P: N/A, HS
By Francisco X. Stork (YA Stor)
When Vicky Cruz wakes up in the Lakeview Hospital Mental Disorders ward, she knows one thing: After her suicide attempt, she shouldn't be alive. But then she meets Mona, the live wire; Gabriel, the saint; E.M., always angry; and Dr. Desai, a quiet force. With stories and honesty, kindness and hard work, they push her to reconsider her life before Lakeview, and offer her an acceptance she’s never had.
Lexile: HL680; F&P: Z+, HS
By Sandra Cisneros (YA Cisn)
Told in a series of vignettes – sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes deeply joyous – this is the story of Esperanza Cordero, a young Latina girl growing up in Chicago, inventing for herself who and what she will become.
Lexile: 870L; F&P: W, MS
By Pam Munoz Ryan (YA Ryan)
Esperanza and her mother are forced to leave their life of wealth and privilege in Mexico to go work in the labor camps of Southern California, where they must adapt to the harsh circumstances facing Mexican farm workers on the eve of the Great Depression.
Lexile: 750L; F&P: V, MS
By Sonia Manzano (YA B Manz)
Each day young Sonia is glued to the TV screen that blots out the painful realities of her existence and also illuminates the possibilities that lie ahead. But when the TV goes off, Sonia is taken back to real-life--the cramped, colorful world of her neighborhood and an alcoholic father. It is Sonia's dream of becoming an actress that keeps her afloat among the turbulence of her life and times.
Lexile: 910L; F&P: Z+, HS
By Benjamin Alire Saenz (YA Saen)
When Aristotle, an angry teen with a brother in prison, meets Dante, a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world, at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime.
Lexile: HL380L; F&P: F, HS
By Isabel Quintero (YA Quin)
Gabi is determined to break down stereotypes imposed on her. No one is going to tell her what she can and can’t do.
Lexile: HL820L, F&P: N/A, HS