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"Quintero delivers an in-your-face YA debut, a passionate polemic on racial politics in urban America."
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"It is Quintero’s effortless grasp of teen slang that gives her first-person story its heart."
—Booklist (starred review)
From the Hardcover edition.
Posted May 29, 2014
I read Efrain’s Secret by Sofia Quintero published by Alfred A. Knopf. I liked this book because of the great story it tells and the lessons but it wasn’t my absolute favorite. The book is about a hard working Hispanic boy from Brookline named Efrain who is valedictorian of his class. He comes from a low-income family and any college that he goes to he will have trouble paying for. He doesn’t want to go to any school; he wants to go to Harvard. For him to ever complete his dream of going to an Ivy League school like Harvard he will need to get a higher score on the SAT. For Efrain there is just one problem, before he can ever complete his dream he needs money. He has no way to pay for the SAT prep or even pay for college. So he does the unthinkable with the promise from his friend Nestor that he can hook Efrain up as a drug dealer so he will be able to afford the school of his dreams and still have time to study for the SATs. For Efrain selling drugs might be an easy way to make the extra money but once it starts to go to far he might not be able to stop it and his dreams of going to Harvard might be over. He thinks that with his good intentions that everything will be fine but will risking his dream school and even his life really be worth it for him.
This book is an exciting read. The story defiantly makes you want to finish the book because you want to see if his dream really does come true or if he blew it. This book does have some suspenseful parts but most of it is easy to predict what is going to happen next. In the book I was really wondering that if such a smart kid would really risk all he worked for by doing something illegal for extra money. It also leaves me wondering that if such a smart kid like Efrain who probably knows a lot about Harvard would miss the detail that Harvard gives a free ride to low-income families but that news might not stop him and it might be to late. The main character Efrain is a very likeable character. He has a lot of good qualities but it might get aggravating with some of the decisions that he makes. This book for me didn’t really have a personal connection because I haven’t grown up having the problems that Efrain faced. This book would defiantly be good for kids that grow up near or around cities. Though I didn’t have a personal connection it was still a really exciting book to read. I would defiantly recommend it for high school students and even collage students because it applies to both groups of people. It’s defiantly a good book to read, it was fun trying to understand the Spanish sentences that are sprinkled throughout the book. I would recommend it to anybody that wants a book that is easy to follow and exciting to read, that’s why I gave it five stars.
Posted August 28, 2012
Posted December 7, 2011
If you ever had a secret that you never told anyone, and in the end you got in trouble for it. I would say read this book. It makes you smile, build compassion, and think on how things could have been different.
Efrain Rodriguez had a dream of wanting to go to Harvard, but his dreams where shot down by his unbelievers. Living in the South Bronx, New York, and having a single mom he wasn't sure if his dreams would come true. So he set himself in the wrong path.
I realize from reading this book it has a lot of lessons to be learned. By having patience, making a choice that has its consequences in the end. I feel like this book had a lot to say. I recommend anybody to read this book. It¿s inspiring.