Becoming Naomi León by Pam Muñoz Ryan

13 Dec

Naomi Soledad León Outlaw hates her name. She’s not much of an outlaw. She’s not much of a lion either. She’s more of a mouse. She whispers. Her brother Owen has some disabilities but is super smart. He puts tape on his clothes. He gets teased a lot. They are both half Mexican but only Naomi looks the part, with dark olive skin, brown hair and brown eyes. Owen takes after the other half, with fair skin.

Their great-grandmother (Gram)makes most of their clothes. Out of scrap polyester. Actually they both get teased a lot. Naomi is part of the left over crowd. She eats lunch in the cafeteria with the rest of the left over bunch.

They live with Gram at the Avocado Acres Trailer Rancho, in their trailer, Baby Beluga. Owen plays checkers. Naomi carves soap into animal shapes. It’s a gift. Gram sews  with their friend, and neighbor, Fabiola. All is fine till her mother Terri Lynn, now knows as Skyla, comes into town like a tornado and shakes everything up. Skyla is an unknown to Naomi and Owen. And even their Gram doesn’t know what’s going on, or what Skyla and her boyfriend want.

But when Skyla shows her hand, the Outlaws have to go on the run. To Oaxaca Mexico. And Naomi needs to abandon her inner mouse and discover and develop the lion inside of her.


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