All The Stars Denied
Estrella is a feisty 15-year-old living with her parents on a ranch in southern Texas. It’s 1931, and the Great Depression is in full swing. Her town is severely divided ethnically, and families of Mexican descent, though American citizens, are being rounded up and repatriated across the border. Following a protest that Estrella organizes, her home is burned, and she, her toddler brother, and mother are separated from her father while being transported to Mexico. They are thrown onto a train, forced into an open-air livestock corral for days with hundreds of others in harsh winter weather, and then taken to Mexico City, where survival is a constant challenge. However, there is always hope. Readers interested in history and current events will recognize striking similarities between events in this companion to Shame the Stars (2016) and the separation of refugee children from their parents today. Through Estrella’s eloquent letters to her late grandmother and insightful poetry written in her journal, the sorrow and hardship of the ordeal is brought to light in a unique voice.