From the award-winning author of The First Rule of Punk and Strange Birds, a dazzling novel about a young girl who collects the missing pieces of her origin story from the family of legendary luchadores she’s never met.
A 2023 Pura Belpré Author Honor Book
Twelve-year-old Adela “Addie” Ramírez has a big decision to make when her stepfather proposes adoption. Addie loves Alex, the only father figure she’s ever known, but with a new half brother due in a few months and a big school theater performance on her mind, everything suddenly feels like it’s moving too fast. She has a million questions, and the first is about the young man in the photo she found hidden away in her mother’s things.
Addie’s sleuthing takes her to a New Mexico ranch, and her world expands to include the legendary Bravos: Rosie and Pancho, her paternal grandparents and former professional wrestlers; Eva and Maggie, her older identical twin cousins who love to spar in and out of the ring; Uncle Mateo, whose lucha couture and advice are unmatched; and Manny, her biological father, who’s in the midst of a career comeback. As luchadores, the Bravos’s legacy is strong. But being part of a family is so much harder—it’s about showing up, taking off your mask, and working through challenges together.
COVER MAY VARY.
Humor and heartfelt emotion reign supreme in a quirky narrative that centers the importance of family, blood or blended. Twelve-year-old Adela Ramírez, who's of Mexican descent, has a half brother on the way, a new addition to the stepfamily of her, her museum fossil preparator mother, and her stepfather, a wrestling fan who runs a diner. As the due date looms, Adela's stepfather proposes a big step: formally adopting her. Adela loves him and even thinks of him as her dad, but the situation is complicated by the existence of her absent biological father, whose identity her mother has never revealed. After deducing it from an old photo, though, it turns out that Adela is descended from a line of wrestling superstars, the Bravo family, who welcome her warmly into their family and traditions. But her biological father remains distant, and with the question of adoption looming, Adela must decide what, if any, role she wants him to play in her life. Layered, moving characterizations and Adela's voice, full of amusing witticisms, mark this charming novel, which glows with the love—and complications—of family. Ages 9–12.