In 1984 Los Angeles, Alex is a tomboy who would rather wear her hair short and her older brother’s hand-me-downs, and Wolf is a troubled kid who’s been wearing the same soldier’s uniform ever since his mom died. They temporarily set their worries aside when their street is torn up by digging machines and transformed into a muddy wonderland with endless possibilities. To pass the hot summer days, the two best friends seize the opportunity to turn Muscatel Avenue into a battleground and launch a gleeful street war against the rival neighborhood kids.
But when Alex and Wolf make their headquarters inside a deep trench, Alex’s grandmother warns them that some buried things want to be found and some want to stay hidden and forgotten. Although she has the wisdom of someone who has survived the Mexican Revolution, the Spanish Flu, and immigration to a new country, the kids ignore her warning, unearthing more than they bargained for.
This exuberant novel perfectly capture the summers of youth, when anything feels possible and an adventure is always around the corner. Bursting with life and feeling, both the people and the land come alive in a tale interwoven with Mexican-American identity, experience, and history. The Street Belongs to Us is a story of family, friendship, and unconditional acceptance, even when it breaks your heart.
"Jiménez has painted an authentic picture of puberty with a light touch that is both respectful and endearing. Godoy's animated drawings, economical and evocative, add to the overall magic." —Linda Schuyler, co-creator and executive producer of the Degrassi franchise
"Full of humor and heart, The Street Belongs to Us is a beautiful and subversively queer story that probes the depths of intertwined human loss and connection." —Cory Silverberg, author of Sex Is a Funny Word
"The Street Belongs to Us magically addresses gender, grief, pain, longing, and illness, all with a writing cadence that makes us love each character like family." —Joie Lamar, author of Mambo Lips: A Memoir of a Girl Who Found Strength in Being Different
"The Street Belongs to Us creates a complex, rich, and beautiful world. Jiménez shows us the beauty and importance of gender diversity and how kids can navigate the difficult and exciting changes that lie ahead." —Lisa Selin Davis, author of Tomboy: The Surprising History of Girls Who Dare to be Different