“Under the Mesquite” by Guadalupe Garcia McCall is about a girl named Lupita and her journey across the border with her family. In the Unites States, her mother plants a rose garden but in the middle of the rose garden a mesquite tree starts growing. No matter how many times her mother takes the mesquite tree out of the rose garden, it will always grow back frustrating the mother because of how horrible it looked in the middle of the rose garden. Instead, the family chooses to look at the mesquite tree as a symbol of strength and beauty.
When Lupita comes of age, she struggles with responsibilities of helping taking care of her family when her mother is diagnosed with cancer at the same time making her dreams a reality
which is to become an actress. It takes a big toll on the family and changes Lupita’s way of living. The news of her mother having cancer soon spreads like wild fire and Lupita puts a mask on in front of everyone and pretends that everything is fine; her only escape is acting in plays by pouring every emotion she has felt into the delivery of those lines.
I loved this book. My favorite part out of the whole book is when she is in drama class and she has to suck on some Blow Pops that her teacher, Mr. Cortez, gives her to get rid of her accent if she wants to become an actress. With the Blow Pops in her mouth, she asks “I have an accent?” and they both crack up because of how funny she sounded.
I recommend this book to everyone. It was beautifully written like a poem and tells a story that people don’t read too often in books.