hey skinny bones! pump it girl! didn't you eat your rice and beans and pork chops today!?
you're Eugene right?
Elena is a 14 year old Puerto Rican girl who moves from the island to new jersey. she moves into "El Building" where many immigrants live and goes to school near by.
lets read this book!
Elena is being bullied at school for her culture and differences. Some big black girls keep taunting her about rice, beans, and pork chops and how skinny she is. She feels very embarrassed
your going out tonight!! mija the presidents just been shot!! come to church with me
im only going out for a little bit mom! ill be back by 8. i need to study
Elena becomes friends with Eugene and they start walking home together. at first when Elena approaches him, Eugene is very shy but after a while they get closer.
go home girl. my son cant talk to you because you live in that building. goodbye.
Elena and Eugene start hanging out more and more even going to the school library to pick books to read together. one day Eugene asks Elena if she wants to study for an American history test. Elena accepts his offer joyfully. Elena rushes home to get ready.
After Elena gets ready and is about to walk out the door She walks into the living room and sees her mother crying in front of the tv. Her mother informs her that the president has been shot. Elena wants to comfort her mother but she wants to make it on time to see Eugene. Her mother is shocked when Elena tells her she is going out on a tragic day like this but doesn't stop her from going to Eugene's house.
Elena knocks on the door and is surprised when Eugene doesn't answer the door. Instead a woman in a white uniform answers the door. Elena explains to Eugene's mom that she and her son had plans to study. His mother finds out she lives in the building next door and tells Elena that Eugene isnt going to hang out or talk with her anymore. she says its nothing personal but Elena knows its because of where she lives. she goes home and cries to sleep.