Pam Muñoz Ryan’s award-winning novel Esperanza Rising is a powerful book to introduce into your middle school classroom. The story of a young girl’s journey from a prosperous ranch in Mexico to the growing fields of California, Esperanza Rising is a tale of overcoming difficulties and, above all, of the power of a family’s love. Ryan’s book is based on the true life experiences of her grandmother, and seamlessly works the cultural and historical realities of 1930s life into the plot. The novel explores issues of belonging, identity, and respect. It also provides context for discussions about immigration, prejudice, and fair trade. Ryan brings it all to life with vivid imagery and figurative language.
Esperanza Rising Symbolism and theme- Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan
The roses are a reminder of Papa. Miguel and Alfonso bring rose roots from Papa's garden and plant them behind the cabin in Los Angeles. These living flowers are a way that Mama and Esperanza can keep Papa's memory alive.