Project Description


Truth and Salsa

by Linda Lowery

A spirited young girl must travel far from home to finally find herself.

Mexico is a long way from Kalamazoo—and not just in terms of miles. Almost-thirteen-year-old Hayley Flynn is spending six months with her eccentric grandmother in the rural mountain town of San Miguel. Her father recently deserted the family and Hayley’s mom needs time to, as she puts it, “work things through.”

Down in Mexico, everyone calls Hayley by her new, more glamorous chosen name, Margarita, and life is surprisingly exciting—exotic birds, beautiful butterflies, holidays, colorful fiestas, and new friends like Lili. Hayley and Lili even win parts as extras in a Hollywood movie being filmed in the town. But there are also difficult lessons to be learned. Poverty and unemployment send Lili’s father and other men from the village to Michigan to work as migrant workers so they can send money back home to their anxious families. Meanwhile Hayley is on the lookout for la fantasma (the ghost) that is said to haunt her grandma’s house. With Lili’s help she solves the mystery—and prepares for a new life with her mom back in the States.

Hardcover: $15.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-366-5
Total Pages: 176
Size: 6 x 8 1/2
Language: English
Paperback: $7.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-498-3
Total Pages: 176
Size: 6 x 8 1/2
Language: English
Format: E-book
ISBN: 978-1-56145-998-8
Age Range: 8 – 12
Language: English

Purchase this E-book through the following vendors:

Baker & Taylor
Barnes & Noble
Recorded Books

Accelerated Reader
AR Quiz#: 106516
AR Reading Level: 4.1
AR Points: 6

F&P (Fountas & Pinnell)
F&P Level: W
F&P Grade: 6

Reading Counts
Reading Counts Level: 3.7
Reading Counts Points: 9
Reading Counts Interest Level: 3-5


“The writing is engaging, and Lowery has created a strong sense of place through vivid descriptions of local festivals, scenery, and day-to-day life in the town.” ―School Library Journal

“…unique, smart and lovable…” ―New York Amsterdam News


Best Children’s Books of the Year ―Bank Street College of Education 2007

Society of School Librarians International Book Awards (honor book, Language Arts K-6 novels) ―Society of School Librarians International 2006

Georgia Children’s Book Award (nominee) ―University of Georgia 2008

Kentucky Bluegrass Awards (Master List, grades 6-8) ―Kentucky Reading Association, Kentucky School Media Association 2008

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Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (middle school/junior high) ―Kansas National Education Association 2007

Massachusetts Children’s Book Award (master list) ―Salem State College 2010-2011

For Teens, by Teens: Teens Recommended Reading List ―Just Read, Florida! 2011

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Meet the Author

Linda Lowery is the author of many novels and biographies for children. She lives in North Carolina. You can visit her website here.