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Ernesto Cisneros

Efrén Divided


The 2021 Pura Belpré Award Winner

Efrén Nava's Amâ is his Superwoman — or Soperwoman, named after the delicious Mexican sopes his mother often prepares. Both Amâ and Apâ work hard all day to provide for the family, making sure Efrén and his younger siblings Max and MÍa feel safe and loved.

But Efrén worries about his parents; although he's American-born, his parents are undocumented. His worst nightmare comes true one day when Amâ doesn't return from work and is deported across the border to Tijuana, México.

Now more than ever, Efrén must channel his inner Soperboy to help take care of and try to reunite his family.

A glossary of Spanish words is included in the back of the book.

"We need books to break open our hearts, so that we might feel more deeply, so that we might be more human in these unkind times. This is a book doing work of the spirit in a time of darkness." — Sandra Cisneros, author of The House on Mango Street

"Debut author Cisneros paints a vivid and palpable #ownvoices picture of the lost childhoods as children and parents are separated due to immigration issues. But even as Efrén's world seems to be crashing around him, Cisneros celebrates the kindness of the Mexican American community and its richness of food, culture, and resilient spirit. Honest and tender: a must-read." — Kirkus Reviews, starred review