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What Can't Wait
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What Can't Wait
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"Another day finished,gracias a Dios."Seventeen-year-old Marisa's mother has been saying this for as long as Marisa can remember. Her parents came to Houston from Mexico. They work hard, and they...
"Another day finished,gracias a Dios."Seventeen-year-old Marisa's mother has been saying this for as long as Marisa can remember. Her parents came to Houston from Mexico. They work hard, and they...
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  • "Another day finished,gracias a Dios."

    Seventeen-year-old Marisa's mother has been saying this for as long as Marisa can remember. Her parents came to Houston from Mexico. They work hard, and they expect Marisa to help her familia. An ordinary life—marrying a neighborhood guy, working, having babies—ought to be good enough for her.

    Marisa hears something else from her calc teacher. She should study harder, ace the AP test, and get into engineering school in Austin. Some days, it all seems possible. On others, she's not even sure what she wants.

    When her life at home becomes unbearable, Marisa seeks comfort elsewhere—and suddenly neither her best friend nor boyfriend can get through to her. Caught between the expectations of two different worlds, Marisa isn't sure what she wants—other than a life where she doesn't end each day thanking God it's over.

    But some things just can't wait...

Reviews-

  • School Library Journal

    May 1, 2011

    Gr 10 Up-Marisa Moreno, a Houston high school senior, is the goody-goody younger sister of Cecelia, who had a child at 17, and macho brother Gustavo, who calls her nerda. Although Marisa earns A's, her acceptance letter to an Austin university sits hidden away in a kitchen drawer stuffed with her mother's prayer cards, an example of the narrative's rich and carefully observed detail. Afraid to let go of her younger daughter, Ma equates the distance to not-so-far-away Austin with Germany because the only other young woman who left their neighborhood is stationed there with the army. Ma's geography may be weak, but her logistical argument is solid. Marisa babysits her niece, Anita; works at a supermarket; and cooks for the family: Who will replace her? With little spare time, the teen's attempts at having a social life are flimsy; her best friend, Brenda, and boyfriend Alan provide comic relief and support. A short scene about an attempted sexual assault is too quickly drawn to be convincing. The real dynamic is among the members of this nuclear family, particularly involving its five-year-old scene stealer, Anita. The love of Marisa's life, she's someone for whom one would gladly struggle to build a future, even if it means learning to put your own needs before those of the family. This strong first novel makes an excellent choice for populations with large numbers of immigrant students.-Georgia Christgau, Middle College High School, Long Island City, NY

    Copyright 2011 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Lerner Publishing Group
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