The inspiring true story about identical twin teenage brothers who escape El Salvador's violence to build new lives in California as undocumented immigrants, perfect for fans of Enrique's Journey and anyone interested in learning about the issues that underlie today's conversations about DACA and immigration reform.
Ernesto and Raúl Flores are identical twins, used to being mistaken for each other. As seventeen-year-olds living in rural El Salvador, they think the United States is just a far-off dream--it's too risky, too expensive to start a life there. But when Ernesto ends up on the wrong side of MS-13, one of El Salvador's brutal gangs, he flees the country for his own safety. Raúl, fearing that he will be mistaken for his brother, follows close behind.
Running from one danger to the next, the Flores twins make the harrowing journey north, crossing the Rio Grande and the Texas desert only to fall into the hands of immigration authorities. When they finally make it to the custody of their older brother in Oakland, California, the difficulties don't end.
While navigating a new school in a new language, struggling to pay off their mounting coyote debt, and anxiously waiting for their day in immigration court, Raul and Ernesto are also trying to lead normal teenage lives--dealing with girls, social media, and fitting in. With only each other for support, they begin the process of carving out a life for themselves, one full of hope and possibility.
Adapted for young adults from the award-winning adult edition, The Far Away Brothers is the inspiring true story of two teens making their way in America, a personal look at U.S. immigration policy, and a powerful account of contemporary immigration.
A Junior Library Guild Selection
"Both touching and educational. . . . Gets inside the heads and hearts of immigrants." --Kirkus, Starred Review
"A must for all young adult nonfiction shelves." --School Library Journal, Starred
"Visceral and informative, this is a necessary read for today's youth." --Booklist
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
At 17, twins Ernesto and Raúl were living with an amount of stress we can hardly imagine. Their story starts in 2013, when gangs infiltrated the brothers’ El Salvador village and forced them to flee. Journalist Lauren Markham has worked with migrant teens, and her sensitivity, talent for storytelling, and keen eye for social and political details put us right in the teenagers’ shoes. The Far Away Brothers describes the brothers’ treacherous journey through the desert and their time living in a for-profit shelter run by the border patrol up through their arrival in California, where they try to learn English and get back to living like teenagers. Reading this book helped us realize how truly harrowing the refugee experience is.