Reviewed by Beverly Slapin
Even before the Monroe Doctrine, which declared that all of the Americas belonged to the U.S., this country has wreaked havoc through invasion, setting up companies to put native products in the hands of American corporations, and creating and supporting regime change to fit the agenda of big business, all of which have resulted in political and economic destabilization. What ensued is mass unemployment, social chaos, and the terror of government death squads and the murderous narcotraficante gangs.
As of now, few holdouts remain—among them, Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, and Nicaragua. Meanwhile, refugees from the most dangerous of the U.S. “client” countries—such as El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico—have fled by the hundreds of thousands into the U.S. They are not coming here for a “better life”—they are fleeing to save their lives. And they flee, as a colleague aptly described, “into the mouth of the shark.” Continue reading.
Somos Como Las Nubes / We Are Like the Clouds by Jorge Argueta
Illustrator: Alfonso Ruano
Published by Groundwood Books on October 1st 2016
Genres: Bilingual, Central America, Homelessness, Immigration and Emigration, Latinx, OwnVoices, Stories in Verse
Reading Level: Grades 3-5, Grades 6-8
Review Source: De Colores: The Raza Experience in Books for Children
Also by this author: Salsa, A Movie in My Pillow, Alfredito Flies Home
Publisher's synopsis: Why are young people leaving their country to walk to the United States to seek a new, safe home? Over 100,000 such children have left Central America. This book of poetry helps us to understand why and what it is like to be them. This powerful book by award-winning Salvadoran poet Jorge Argueta describes the terrible process that leads young people to undertake the extreme hardships and risks involved in the journey to what they hope will be a new life of safety and opportunity. A refugee from El Salvador s war in the eighties, Argueta was born to explain the tragic choice confronting young Central Americans today who are saying goodbye to everything they know because they fear for their lives. This book brings home their situation and will help young people who are living in safety to understand those who are not. Compelling, timely and eloquent, this book is beautifully illustrated by master artist Alfonso Ruano who also illustrated The Composition, considered one of the 100 Greatest Books for Kids by Scholastic s Parent and Child Magazine."