LitBirthdays September 3, 2014

2014 National Book Festival Report

Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass

by Meg Medina

MegMedina2 Excerpts from Meg Medina’s August 30, 2014 talk about her book, Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass.
Part 1 – Why write this book?
(3 minutes)
Part 2 – Latino Lens
(5 minutes)
Part 3 – The “A” word
(5 minutes)

From the Booklist description:

“When Piedad “Piddy” Sanchez hears that Yaqui Delgado is going to crush her, she has no idea why she has become a target of one of the roughest girls in her new Queens school. But Yaqui tells everyone Piddy is a skank who shakes her ass when she walks, and as the bullying escalates from threats to physical attacks, Piddy finds herself living in constant fear. A strong student with a bright future at her old school, Piddy starts skipping school, and her grades nosedive.”

From reader reviews:

“When I went to Masterman Junior High, lo these many years ago, I was accosted by a student who told me L.R. (protecting the not-so-innocent here with initials) wanted to fight me. I had no reason to want to fight L.R.; I didn’t even know her. And in my former school, no such physical fights took place, so I was in shock. Because of this, I could totally identify — Piedad (Piddy) is in a new school and gets informed in the same way that a tough stranger wants to fight her and Piddy, too, is unaccustomed to such unsought violence.” [Diane Wilkes]

“What I loved most about the book was the family and friends of Piddy Sanchez. Piddy picks up a motley assortment of friends — friends who are stuck-up, geeky or cool. They all have their flaws and Piddy doesn’t gloss over them, which makes the friendships in the book seem all the more realistic. On top of that, the family around Piddy are just as complex and fascinating as her friends. Her mother’s best friend Lila is like the cool aunt I always wanted. She’s sassy, beautiful, and dispenses wisdom like she’s giving out candy — here, try it and you’re welcome. Piddy’s relationship with her mother is what really gets me. Her mother reminds me of my mother — snippy, full of strange advice, and strong. The story isn’t just about bullying. It’s about the mother-daughter relationship that is growing and changing. Strong female relationships are front and center in this book.” [Jessica Y]



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