Books: Fiction

Journey of Dreams

Book — Fiction. By Marge Pellegrino. 2009. 250 pages.
Historical fiction for young adult readers about the experience of Central American refugees and the long journey north.
Time Periods: 20th Century, Post-Civil Rights Era: 1975 - 2000
Themes: Economics, Immigration, Organizing

Drawing from testimonies shared by refugee families from Guatemala, Pellegrino has written a gripping novel of 12-year-old Tomasa and her family, who flee for safety as their village is burned to the ground. While traveling north, they see how big landowners quickly take over the farmland after the indigenous people who have lived there for centuries are killed or forced out by soldiers. Every night of their journey, Tomasa’s father shares legends and family stories as he did each night in their village. After a harrowing border crossing into Mexico, Tomasa’s family finds help from the Sanctuary Movement. The book ends with their arrival in the United States.

Journey of Dreams can introduce young adult readers to the experience of Central American refugees and the long journey north, which is even more difficult today.

The book can also introduce the story of the Sanctuary Movement of the 1980s that saved the lives of thousands of Central Americans.

ISBN: 9781847800619 | Frances Lincoln