Miosotis Flores Never Forgets

By The Horn Book

Achievement runs in twelve-year-old Miosotis’s Dominican family: her father is a physics professor, her brother Jacinto is a track star and straight-A student, and her sister Amarilis attends a prestigious university. School is not Miosotis’s forte, but improving her grades is the only way to persuade Papi to let her adopt a dog. (Her well-intentioned siblings and best friends offer to help but bypass her genuine efforts and end up doing the work for her.) Her favorite diversion is helping her neighbor Gina, who fosters rescue dogs, walking and socializing them, allowing Miosotis to demonstrate her commitment to pet parenting. Her priorities shift when she discovers that her sister, who has become increasingly distant and unreliable, is being abused by her fiancé. Burgos’s explorations of social issues—also including racial profiling and colorism—are well incorporated, without overburdening the narrative. In Miosotis, she crafts a character who is thoughtful and true to herself, creating a satisfying story arc in which the protagonist determines her own potential. The book’s message will reassure readers who find themselves overshadowed by siblings’ achievements—or overwhelmed by their troubles—and who face pressure to live up to the expectations of others.