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Table of Contents
About The Book
From Young People’s Poet Laureate and award-winning author Margarita Engle comes a lively middle grade novel in verse that tells the story of a Cuban-American boy who visits his family’s village in Cuba for the first time—and meets a sister he didn’t know he had.
Edver isn’t happy about being shipped off to Cuba to visit the father he barely knows. Why would he want to visit a place that no one in Miami ever mentions without a sigh? Yet now that travel laws have changed and it’s a lot easier for divided families to be reunited, his mom thinks it's time for some father-son bonding.
Edver doesn’t know what this summer has in store, but he’s definitely expecting to meet a sister he didn’t know existed! Luza is a year older and excited to see her little brother, until she realizes how different their lives have been. Looking for anything they might have in common, they sneak onto the internet—and accidentally catch the interest of a dangerous wildlife poacher. Edver has fought plenty of villains in video games. Now, to save the Cuban jungle they love, he and Luza are going to have to find a way to conquer a real villain!
- Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers (August 29, 2017)
- Length: 208 pages
- ISBN13: 9781481490597
- Ages: 10 - 99
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Raves and Reviews
"The poetic journey is one of rich juxtapositions between the real and the marvelous, technology and nature, science and art, past histories and possible futures. An addition that delicately illustrates the Cuban-American experience through a poetic and scientific lens not often seen."
– Kirkus Reviews, 6/15/17
* "A beautifully written eco-adventure, this is also a thoughtful exploration of the realities faced by families separated by 90 miles and politics.”
– Booklist, Starred Review, July 2017
* “An evocative verse novel told in alternating voices . . . Filled with butterflies, hummingbirds, forest creatures, and fossils, Engle’s affirming story is valuable both for the way the sciences inform it and for its careful attention to the relations between the Cubans who stayed and those who left the island . . . Realistically satisfying.”
– Publishers Weekly, Starred Review, June 12, 2017
"This well-timed and accessible work of eco-fiction should readily find its way into classrooms and libraries as an opening to learning more about the familial ties between the United States and one of its nearest neighbors."
– School Library Journal, August 2017
“Through alternating chapters, Edver’s and Luza’s stories are told in Engle’s signature verse style. The importance of biodiversity in Cuba, and how Cubans are trying to save their own flora and fauna from tourists, poachers, and climate change, are important themes; as are Cuban families divided by politics.”
– The Horn Book, September/October 2017
“Engle’s accessible text shimmers with affection for rural life in Cuba, its wildlife, and people, and the book offers shrewd observations about the families spread between Cuba and Miami, separated by only a few miles and a huge cultural gulf. . . . The exploration of the reclamations of endangered species and the picture of a very different life in Cuba are intriguing.”
– BCCB, September 2017
Awards and Honors
- CBC/NCSS Notable Social Studies Trade Book
- Green Earth Book Award
- Kansas NEA Reading Circle List Intermediate Title
- Walter Dean Myers Honor Book
Resources and Downloads
High Resolution Images
- Book Cover Image (jpg): Forest World eBook 9781481490597
- Author Photo (jpg): Margarita Engle Photograph (c) Shevaun Williams(0.1 MB)
Any use of an author photo must include its respective photo credit
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