By Claudia Guadalupe Martinez
Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press (October 14, 2014)
From the Publisher
It's crazy! Fifteen-year-old Masi Burciaga's neighborhood is becoming more and more of a ghost town since the lard company moved away. Her school closed down. Her family's bakery and the other surviving businesses may soon follow. As a last resort, the neighborhood grown-ups enlist all the remaining able-bodied boys and girls to haul bricks to help build a giant pyramid in the park in hopes of luring visitors. Maybe their neighbors will come back too. But something's not right about the entrepreneur behind it all. Then there's the new boy who came to help, the one with the softest of lips.
Claudia talks about racial identity and the real-life Chicago neighborhood that inspired the setting for Pig Park in her essay for Latin@s in Kid Lit: I wrote Pig Park recognizing that the world my children will be a part of isn’t exactly one thing, and that this is the type of world many kids are increasingly growing up in. Read more here.
"The story of a community working together is uplifting … Martinez uses nicely specific physical details to relate Masi’s experiences, and the moments in the bakery seem particularly authentic and are suffused with love."—Kirkus Reviews
"Martinez uses diversity to her advantage, showcasing Masi, her family, and all of the people living in this town… Overall, this is a quick read that touches on family issues, young love, and the strength that comes when times get tough."—VOYA Magazine, *starred review*
"Between those yummy covers is an equally delicious book... The novel tackles that age-old question of how far, how much, what exactly would you do for something that matters to you?"—All Brown All Around
"Filled with a first crush, an absent parent, fear of losing home and friends, and community engagement … readers will appreciate its strong characters and identify with the protagonist’s teen angst."—School Library Journal
"Martinez creates an emotional dilemma for Masi, caught between a romantic crush and her family’s struggles, yet... suggests a fairy-tale undercurrent within the novel.”—Publishers Weekly
Claudia Guadalupe Martinez grew up in El Paso, Texas. She learned that letters form words from reading the subtitles of old westerns for her father who always misplaced his glasses. At age six, she already knew she wanted to create stories. Her father encouraged her to dream big and write a book or two one day. Although he passed away when Claudia was eleven, her mother, family and many others continued to encourage her writing.