Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco

Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco With humor and sensitivity a debut novelist explores the coming of age of a girl caught between two cultures as she finds the courage to forge a new destiny Miss will you be my Amiga Amiga means fri

  • Title: Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco
  • Author: Judith Robbins Rose
  • ISBN: 9780763672355
  • Page: 476
  • Format: Hardcover
  • With humor and sensitivity, a debut novelist explores the coming of age of a girl caught between two cultures as she finds the courage to forge a new destiny Miss, will you be my Amiga Amiga means friend in Spanish, but at the youth center, it meant a lady to take you places I never asked myself if two people as different as Miss and me could ever really be amigas WWith humor and sensitivity, a debut novelist explores the coming of age of a girl caught between two cultures as she finds the courage to forge a new destiny Miss, will you be my Amiga Amiga means friend in Spanish, but at the youth center, it meant a lady to take you places I never asked myself if two people as different as Miss and me could ever really be amigas When Jacinta Juarez is paired with a rich, famous mentor, she is swept away from the diapers and dishes of her own daily life into a world of new experiences But crossing la linea into Miss s world is scary Half of Jacinta aches for the comfort of Mam and the familiar safety of the barrio, while the other half longs to embrace a future that offers than cleaning stuff for white people When her family is torn apart, Jacinta needs to bring the two halves of herself together to win back everything she s lost Can she channel the power she s gained from her mentor and the strength she s inherited from Mam to save her shattered home life

    One thought on “Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco”

    1. Jacinta is one of my new favorite characters. Her story rang true to the plight of many pre-teen girls-- conflicting emotions about growing up, the desire to be good at something and fit in, the feeling of both loving and hating your parents at the same time, et al. But Jacinta must also deal with the anger, fear, and confusion of being the American-born daughter of undocumented Mexican immigrants. Young readers will love Jacinta’s tenacity and be able to both identify with and learn from her [...]

    2. A great read—and one that shows a lot of honesty and authenticity on both the part of the narrator and the window we get into her mentor.

    3. I bought this book after hearing the author read the opening pages. The voice caught me immediately - clear, charming, and authentic. But when I sat down to read, I discovered a story that was so much more. A girl child whose world is too small. She chooses to crash through those confining walls for entirely the "wrong" reasons. Jacinta is feisty and argumentative, jealous and scared and lonely, wrestling her way through the tangles, sorrows, and hard truths of the life she was born to. But thro [...]

    4. I had my doubts starting this one, but Judith Robbins Rose approaches the subject in a real and responsible way. She doesn't force a white savior complex, but instead illustrates the effects of one life on another. It's also filled with gems of wisdom that are digestible to younger students. I look forward to sharing this book with a focus group of students to see their thoughts on the text.

    5. This book is about a girl named Jacinta Juarez who is struggling with the absence of her mother and is paired with a rich, famous mentor. This book tells a story about the struggle of a young girl trying to stay true to her roots and at the same time wants to fulfill a better future. As Jacinta’s world expands, so does her confusion about where she belongs. I really liked this book because I believe many students who come from immigrant families can relate to this story. It is hard for student [...]

    6. Jacinta and her two sisters were born in the United States but her parents are undocumented workers. When her parents are deported Jacinta must rely on her mentor for help. A heartrending story that depicts the tragedy of deportation and the consequences that are forced on the children.

    7. So glad I got to see the world through Jacinta's eyes. This book is an honest and complex yet heartfelt take on how it feels to walk "la línea;" to have one foot in your parents' heritage and one in "the country where [you] were born and educated." Wonderful story.

    8. Jacinta, the protagonist of Look Both Ways in the Barrio Blanco, is a Mexican-American girl struggling with the otherness that her conflicted nationality imparts on her life and identity. Her tenuous family life tells a story of the Mexican diaspora experience in the United States, one that seems ubiquitous but also very particularly situated. Just as her mother, battered and desperate, crosses "la linea" in a attempt to return home to a crumbling family, Jacinta's father is arrested and presuma [...]

    9. Good to read this from the children's point of view. Our immigration policy has a real consequences far beyond what most of us think.

    10. E ARC from NetgalleyJacinta meets newswoman Kate Dawson Dahl at her community center. Jacinta is working on a picture frame for a Mother's Day gift, and Kate is reporting on teen pregnancy. When Kate accidentally ruins Jacinta's project, she feels bad about it, and Jacinta is quick to jump on this and ask if Kate (or "Miss", as she calls her) will be her Amiga, a sort of Big Sister mentor. Kate, a struggling single mother of two boys Jacinta's age, doesn't want to get involved, but is soon takin [...]

    11. Through a series of haphazard incidents, middle-schooler Jacinta manages to weasel her way into the heart of adult news anchor, Kate, who reluctantly becomes her mentor. Jacinta's family is in the country illegally. Her father works all the time and her mother is back in Mexico caring for her sick grandmother. This means Jacinta and her older sister often spend hours alone caring for their younger sibling. Keeping this information from mentor Kate is difficult, especially when Jacinta's father d [...]

    12. So moving! Do not let the reading level/recommended age fool you. This is a realistic book about culture clash. I am recommending this book to adults. If you desire any sense of what the Mexican immigration experience feels like from the point of view of the children, this is the perfect book for you. This is told in the first person voice of Jacinta. Through a chain of circumstances, a famous white woman becomes her mentor. How they misjudge each other and how they determine what is really impo [...]

    13. I gave this book four stars because I really enjoyed it. I read a few other reviews before beginning this book. Although I agree that in some ways Jacinta is not a very sympathetic character, in most ways she is a typical twelve year old who has had quite a few challenges in her life and is doing the best she can. She experiences a lot of growth throughout the book, and in the end I really was cheering for her.I had to trust that the author is giving us an accurate portrayal of what life might b [...]

    14. Jacinta and her sisters were born in Colorado, but her parents are not in this country legally. Her mother has returned to Mexico to take care of their abuelita, who is very sick. Jacinta knows that she has to be careful with what she says and how she acts, so that she does not bring the attention of the authorities to her family. The fear of deportation is a real and constant threat. When a local news broadcaster shows up at the after school youth center, Jacinta latches on to her. Part jealous [...]

    15. Jacinta Juárez struggles with situations and decisions which put her at odds with herself, her family and her environment. Can she make her way in the barrio blanco (white neighborhood) while still respecting her family’s rules and her Mexican heritage? When her parents need her help will she be able to cross la línea she has created inside herself to be there for her parents and family? Thanks to the help of her amiga Kate, and the educational experiences she and Jacinta have shared, Jacint [...]

    16. Mexican-American Jacinta straddles two worlds - the fragile family existence with her undocumented parents, and the apparent advantages of the barrio blanco through her new Amiga, Kathryn Dawson Dahl. The author does a good job of capturing the instability, but also the tight-knitted community, of the immigrant families, and doesn't shy away from showing the unthinking exertion of white privilege. It would have been nice if the girl on the otherwise appealing cover could have looked more Mexican [...]

    17. I read this book to my students. I was not a huge fan of it. There were good topics in it: immigration, racism, prejudices, and middle school drama. However, it was not a good depiction of Mexico--made it out to be a terrible place, no place anyone would want to return to--and the main character, Jacinta, was so whiny and ungrateful that my students thought she was obnoxious (I did too). The author also uses the same adjectives and metaphors throughout the book. It gets old. I would not recommen [...]

    18. Told from the point of view of an 11 year old Mexican-American, this story provides insight into the worlds of both an underprivileged child and the mentor who attempts to help her out. It demonstrates how even the best intentions can go awry without warning. I enjoyed how much the author emphasized the power of words, both in English and Spanish. Using her new-found power of words, the protagonist, Jacinta, explores many different aspects of a world outside of her little one in this story. By t [...]

    19. Jacinta and her family live in Colorado. Although Jacinta and her two sisters were all born in the USA and are legal citizens, Mama and Papi are not. They are always in danger of deportation and even though Jacinta is growing up in the United States, sometimes her life feels like a different world from the kids around her. She meets a local newswoman by chance and the two start a friendship that teaches both of them lots of unexpected lessons. Terrific story about the American immigrant experien [...]

    20. Jacinta Juarez's parents are in the US illegally and their status effects everything. Jacinta and her older sister Rosa must be careful who they talk to and how much information they give out. Papi is working two jobs while Mama has returned to Mexico to care for Abuelita. This leaves Rosa and Jacinta to care for baby Suelita. Things change for Jacinta when she convinces a well-known tv anchor to be her Amiga, read mentor, but the changes bring danger and fear to the family and her mentor in way [...]

    21. This was a good book. My full review is at bookreviewsandwallpaperssI received this book from for an honest review

    22. I was delightfully surprised by this book. It was funny And serious about what it would be like to be an illegal immigrant in the United States.

    23. This is mostly a white people feel good book, kind of similar to The Help.First of all, it is necessary to recognize the striking similarities between the author, Judith Robbins Rose, and her character Kathryn Dawson Dahl. In case you missed the clear parallels, their names have almost identical alliteration patterns and have the exact same amount of syllables in each name. Also, JRR has a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism, while KDD’s character is a broadcast journalist. I had a hard time trying t [...]

    24. Jacinta is a middle school girl who lives in a small community of Mexican immigrants, many of whom are undocumented. At her youth center, she manages to get a news anchor to be her mentor. She struggles to find out who she really is, who she wants to be, and what family means to her. This book caught my attention because the protagonist is similar to the middle school students I teach, most of whom are from Mexico as first- or second-generation immigrants. I was right for the most part: this boo [...]

    25. A simplistic view of recent immigrants in the US but I think it would be good for my students. They need more books that reflect their lives.

    26. This is one of those instances when a disagreeable main character actually heightens my enjoyment of the story. Both Jacinta and Miss are dimensional characters with sometimes grating flaws, but both have enough shining moments of self-realization to be satisfying. It's a tough book to read in light of the struggles that Jacinta and her family face: trying to fit in while also holding onto their own culture and family; the relative privilege of any particular person when seen through another's e [...]

    27. Jacinta has always lived a poor miserable life. She lives with her father, mother, and her sisters in a small house. But then everything changes, Miss comes in her life, her mama is stuck with Abuleta as Abuleta is sick, and her dad gets two jobs. She is not sure if she can be the girl Miss wants her to be, a confident and strong girl.I was very happy after reading the book. This story felt really realistic. Jacinta has always wanted a mentor, so she can have fun and show off just like Angelica [...]

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