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Mexican Immigrants in America: An Interactive History Adventure
Mexican Immigrants in America: An Interactive History Adventure
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Reviewed Titles Award Winners
You Choose Books

Mexican Immigrants in America: An Interactive History Adventure

Everything in this book happened to real people. And YOU CHOOSE what side you’re on and what you do next. The choices you make could lead you to survival or to death. In the You Choose Books set, only YOU can CHOOSE which path you take through history. What will it be? Get ready for an adventure…

Reading LevelGrades 3-4
Interest LevelGrades 3-7
Lexile Level570L
Early Intervention Level28
PublisherCapstone Press
BrandYou Choose Books
Page Dimensions5 1/4" x 7 1/2"
Page Count112
BindingReinforced Library Binding
List Price: $31.32 School/Library Price
Sets that include this title:


Multicultural Review - Kathryn Mora

"The You Choose series for middle grade readers in many ways resembles the Choose Your Own Adventure series, except that instead of one longer storyline, the author presents several with fewer choices in each. This allows students to select from multiple scenarios that span a longer historical period and introduce a wider range of characters. In the case of Mexican Immigrants in America, readers can leave Mexico to become a migrate farm worker in California in the 1970s with a chance to meet Cesar Chavez and join the strike, work as a housekeeper in Houston or New York City trying to gain citizenship and bring their children to the United States, or cross the desert to work in a meatpacking plant in the Midwest. Not all the choices lead to positive outcomes. Arrest and deportation, illness, getting scammed, job loss, and dying of thirst in the desert are some of the fates readers may encounter, thus showing the difficulties migrants face and their determination in the face of these challenges. Following the scenarios are a time line, discussion questions, book for future reading, Internet sites, a glossary, and an index." - Multicultural Review

July 1, 2009

Practically Paradise Blog, School Library Journal - Diane Chen

"Today's review: Mexican Immigrants in America: An Interactive History Adventure by Rachael Hanel. A Capstone Press YOU CHOOSE series title, 2009. ISBN 9781429620130. Students who read Mexican Immigrants in America will benefit from this well-plotted introduction to the facts and the feelings behind Mexican immigration. With three story paths, 43 choices, and 17 endings, this title will keep your students reading to the end (at least one of the 17). When this title arrived, I immediately walked across the hallway to Dr. Scott for his professional opinion as the teacher of our ELD classes. He agreed to have students look at it. Less than an hour later he asked if he could keep it longer since the majority of his students were wanting to read the title on their own. Four weeks later he brought it back to me, stood in the doorway, and gave me two thumbs up. "It was a hit!" he said. It turns out most of his students took turns reading this title. They sat in small groups chatting about the book and relating it to their own experiences. Many of these students insist they read very little English so they cannot do the homework, yet they remarkably became adept enough to read through many endings of this 110 page book. This story was written at a third-fourth grade level, is intended to interest grades 3-7, but it held tremendous appeal to my 7th and 8th graders. The adults who read Mexican Immigrants in America were amazed at how complex this series is. While at first glance you might dismissively say it's a history version of the Choose Your Own Adventure series, there is a great deal of factual, societal, and historical information inside. I felt saddened, hopeless, and desperate as I read various paths. "Why is immigration so difficult?" I kept wondering. You realize that everything in here is a real possibility and is based upon a real person's events. The full-color photographs help anchor the plot possibilities in reality. This series is a Finalist of the 2008 Distinguished Achievement Award for the Association of Educational Publishers. The series was also reviewed in Library Media Connection, Vol. 26, No. 5, Page 73, February 2008. I understand journals that use their limited space to review only one title in a series, but that doesn't do justice to your needs as the reader/purchaser. That's the advantage bloggers have over print publications. We can pick and choose titles throughout a series that need attention drawn to them. Mexican Immigrants in America is one such title. I was happy to open my latest box from Junior Library Guild to find another copy of this book. It came as the March selection for B+ Upper Elementary & Junior High (Grades 5-7). If you were a member, you'd have access to their detailed guides for each book that include curriculum suggestions. Here are a couple snippets from JLG's review: "The second-person narrative draws in readers from the beginning, as they are encouraged to make choices that will determine their fates...The deprivation that impoverished Mexicans face in their native country is particularly striking, as are the working conditions some immigrants experience in the United States...The interactive format makes this a good choice for reluctant readers." Don't you wish you could go read all of their reviews? If you aren't a member of Junior Library Guild, you will have to content yourself with going to the Capstone site and exploring their new features Related Fiction and Titles Like This. I suggest you pair this title with Will Hobbs' Crossing the Wire. If I had the funds, I'd purchase enough of Crossing the Wire so we could do a One Book, One School program. This year I have been introducing middle schooler's into the concept of putting yourself in the story. Blame it on the number of ESL, immigrant, or financially impoverished students in my population, blame it upon parents who don't make reading exciting when students are young, blame it on Choose Your" - Practically Paradise Blog, School Library Journal

February 23, 2009


Children's Literature Comprehensive Database - Carol Ann Lloyd-Stanger

"This book is one of the “You Choose Books,” part of the “Interactive History Adventure” series. The book begins by setting the stage briefly for Mexican citizens struggling with economic hardships. One option for improving life is to move across the border to the United States. Readers are given three possible paths to pursue: as a migrant worker, as a domestic worker, or as a worker in a meatpacking plant. Once readers select a path to pursue, they begin new lives, with episodes ending with choices such as “stay quiet” or “complain to your crew leader.” After completing one track, readers can go back and take a different path. The text is accompanied by photographs of well-known individuals such as Cesar Chavez and groups of ordinary citizens. The final statements acknowledge the difficulties immigrants face in their choice of coming to the United States. Back matter includes a timeline, reading suggestions, internet sites, a glossary, a bibliography, and an index." - Children's Literature Comprehensive Database

January 1, 2009


Junior Library Guild

Selected by Junior Library Guild for Fall 2008

September 1, 2008

Learning Magazine

2009 Winner, Teachers' Choice Award for Children's Books

January 1, 2009

Association of Educational Publishers

2008 Finalist, Distinguished Achievement Award

January 1, 2008

Rachael Hanel

Rachael Hanel

Rachael Hanel was born in Minnesota, where she still resides. She’s the author of We’ll Be the Last Ones to Let You Down: Memoir of a Gravedigger’s Daughter, and you’re likely to find her roaming around cemeteries.

Go to the Author’s Page →