LIVE STREAMING
Chronicle Books
Chronicle Books

'Shine On, Luz Véliz!': a Latino girl struggles to find her way

Bi-cultural author Rebecca Balcárcel writes about a Latino girl who dreams to be a soccer player but a knee injury forces her to reinvent herself

MORE IN THIS SECTION

The Power of Chance

November 29th, 2022

A Literature of Memory

November 28th, 2022

The Tijuana-San Diego Divide

November 28th, 2022

LATAM Celebrates Books

November 28th, 2022

Come In, My Friend

November 22nd, 2022

Tumbling with the Past

November 21st, 2022

Undocumented Mothers

November 20th, 2022

Tales of terror

November 17th, 2022

SHARE THIS CONTENT:

Rebecca Balcárcel grew up in a small town in Iowa until her family moved to Texas when she turned ten. Though she missed the huge trees of Iowa, Balcárcel appreciated the Spanish speaking going on in Texas.

 “It was then that I realized I could embrace both sides of my Guatemalan-American heritage. I not only love corn on the cob; I love corn tortillas!,” she wrote at her website. 

Today Balcárcel is a well-known children’s book author as well as an Associate professor of English at Tarrant County College, Texas. Her first novel, The Other Half of Happy (2019), was a  Pure Belpré Honor Medal winner. The book tells the story of Quijana, a half-Latina, half-Anglo seventh grader who does not speak Spanish, does not like Don Quixote, and is definitely not going to Guatemala for winter break.  But is she happy being half?

 

On May 2022, Balcárcel published her second novel, “Shine On, Luz Véliz!,” also staring a Latino character. In this case, the author tells the story of Luz Véliz, a young girl who dreams to be a soccer star. With her serious knee injury, it's unlikely she'll be back on the field anytime soon. But without soccer, who is she? Even her dad treats her differently now—like he doesn't know her or, worse, like he doesn't even like her. When Luz discovers she has a knack for coding, it feels like a lifeline to a better self. If she can just ace the May Showcase, she'll not only skip a level in her coding courses and impress Ms. Freeman and intriguing, brilliant Trevor—she'll have her parents cheering her on from the sidelines, just the way she likes it.

But something—someone—is about to enter the Vélizes' life. And when Solana arrives, nothing will be the same, ever again.

"From family relationships, managing anger, living a multifaceted life, caring for others, immigration, and compassion, this book tackles tough topics without ever feeling like it’s tackling tough topics," says the book review at Pawprints in the Ink.

In 2023, Balcárcel will publish "Boundless: Twenty Voices Celebrating Multicultural and Multiracial Identities", an anthology of twenty stories that center and celebrate the multiracial and multicultural experience written by award-winning and bestselling authors.

  • LEAVE A COMMENT:

  • Join the discussion! Leave a comment.

  • or
  • REGISTER
  • to comment.
  • LEAVE A COMMENT:

  • Join the discussion! Leave a comment.

  • or
  • REGISTER
  • to comment.
00:00 / 00:00
Ads destiny link