• cassandraosterloh

The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano

Updated: Mar 30, 2020

Manzano, Sonia. The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano. New York: Scholastic Press, 2014.

YA Fiction

In 1969 Spanish Harlem, Evelyn Serrano is growing up during a complicated time. She is trying hard to break free from her conservative Puerto Rican surroundings. Her abuela comes from Puerto Rico to stay with the family, And then, neighborhood protests start. During the Young Lord’s efforts, activities, and protests, Abuela steps in to take charge while Evelyn’s mother stays on the sideline. Evelyn is torn but ultimately gets into the action. Through all these changes to her life and others, she learns important things about her Puerto Rican heritage.

This book tells the story of the Puerto Rican civil rights movement during the late 1960s in New York City. I knew little about the Latinx involvement in the Civil Rights Movement. After reading the book, I did a lot of research, both for myself and for the group of high school students I was using the book with (as part of our Great Stories Club, Truth, Transformation, and Racial Healing). I learned so much, and I’m I glad I did.

The students really enjoyed the book, too. I think they felt that they could identify with the teens in the story. And, when we discussed the history within and behind the story, I could see them beginning to make connections to their heritage and cultural identity, a spirit of activism, and an understanding of a different kind of political awareness. It was a great discussion.

2013 Américas Award Winner 2013 Pura Belpré Author Honor Book

Review by: Cassandra E. Osterloh, Librarian, HLA-NHCC

Available at the NHCC Library, YA PZ7 .M3213 Rev 2012

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