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The Best Thing about this Book is the cast of characters, many of whom could be considered outcasts but are comfortable in their own skin.
Premise: Alba is sent to Barcelona to live with her abuela, a woman she hardly remembers because Mom has finally had it. She’s threatened many times before, but now, she’s following through on the promise to ship Alba to a place she says will be better.
Target: 4-8 grade
Title: Alba finds herself helping at a nearby bakery. As she discovers a passion for breads, she also finds several friends and sense of, well, love.
Main Character(s): Abla (she/her) — she often gets mistaken for a boy and there is some gender play here
Motifs (not exhaustive): new beginnings, baking, physical abuse, trauma, family, community, business
Great for…* (readers): who enjoy baking or Spain or feel like an outsider or just want to be loved……so, everyone.
Great for…* (teachers): who want a Lit Circle book.
Parental Warning(s): It’s clear Alba’s father is physically abusive to her mother and emotionally/verbally abusive to Alba and her mother. The fact of it is mostly referenced through her mother’s bruises and Alba’s statements about how her dad doesn’t like her.
Interact: What bread would go well with this book?
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*The “Great for” category is not exhaustive and does not intend to neglect the multitude of readers/teachers who could learn from this book in any number of ways.
٭ = DNF, would not recommend
٭٭ = would not recommend
٭٭٭ = enjoyable, would recommend
٭٭٭٭ = very good, would recommend
٭٭٭٭٭ = amazing, would definitely recommend