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Becoming Naomi Leon Paperback – October 1, 2005
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From School Library Journal
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
As Naomi's mother spends more time in Lemon Tree, her motives for coming to see her children become threatening and Grandma and the wonderful Mexican neighbors band together to protect the children.
Becoming Naomi Leon is eloquent and moving story of an extended family, a mother that is a danger to her children, a hunt for a father that takes you to Oaxaca and the beauty there. It is simple and elegant; painful and sweet. This book will touch your heart and show you love in it's purest form.
Pam Munoz Ryan has written an ageless and beautiful story that will stay with me for a very long time.
Naomi begins her book with the chilling statement that she can now point out the exact moment that her sense of peace and security began to unravel like those cartoons where a dog wearing a sweater gets a string from his shirt caught in some way. "Pretty soon the poor dog is bare to its skin, shivering, and all that had kept it warm is nothing more than a bedraggled string". And it all began the night her mother came to town. Naomi had been living a nice quiet life with her great-grandmother (or just Gram, as she calls her) and her little brother Owen. Owen has a slight birth defect that affects his neck and voice, but otherwise he's pretty much a certified genius.Read more ›
Having read Ryan's Esperanza Rising, I was expecting a similar novel, but was pleasantly surprised by the change in tone, pace and characters. Owen is my favorite character, optimistic to the end with his FLK (Funny Looking Kid) label and his protective tape habits. Naomi is a character readers can truly empathize with and rejoice in her simple joys. And more than one of us could relate to her obsessive list making. The situations in this book are all too familiar in real life, but Ryan gives readers hope with a "fairy tale" ending, so to speak. A good novel to start discussion, Becoming Naomi León is well worth it and has become one of my favorite children's novels.
Like all children she is curious about her parents who are not part of her life. One day the children's mother, "Call me Skyla," appears and lavishes attention on Naomi. Skyla barely hides her revulsion over Owen's physical problems resulting from birth defects and does not appreciate his keen and sharp mind. Gram's misgivings are confirmed when Skyla announces she wants to take Naomi to live with her and her boyfriend in Las Vegas. Naomi realizes that she is only wanted for support money and to be a babysitter for the boyfriend's daughter. Her hopes for a happy ending with a loving mother are dashed. To find help for the upcoming custody battle, Gram takes the children to Mexico in hopes of finding the children's father.
This story line seems dreary and tragic but the the characters are so tenderly and finely drawn that we cheer their strength and courage. Naomi comes to know herself and finds her gift as a carver at the Christmas festival in Oaxaca. The reader cares deeply about this family and is thankful to Pam Munoz Ryan who created them. If you enjoyed "Esperanza Rising," you will love "Becoming Naomi Leon."
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Even though I am an adult and had to read the book for a college assignment I fell in love with this book. Such an easy great read!Published 2 months ago by FaithNina
👏👏👏💗💗💗💖💖💖😂😍😇👑soooooooooooo good I 💖 it have fun e t h c b cg g g g $ # : ;Published 6 months ago by Claire Danes the first
I am a college student studying elementary education. I loved reading this book and will definitely be recommending it to others and to my students! Read morePublished 8 months ago by Alexis Borrack
I thought it would be like a biography but it was most definitely not. It was the best book I've ever read! I read it in one night and then reread it again and again!Published 11 months ago by Carmen Staicer
Bought for students, but loved it myself. Beautifully written and intriguing.Published 12 months ago by Amazon Customer
Naomi and Owen's mother left them to live with their great-grandma when they were young so she could "find her life. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Tonya