A moving and compassionate novel pictures the life of the Rodriguez clan, a Mexican peasant family, and the vicissitudes they endure in Los Angeles after their illegal entry into the United States. With deep understanding the author highlights the differences between the two cultures and shows how the sensual, highly principled and deeply innocent rural Mexican is duped and betrayed into crime and vice. Only clowning, lazy and charming Uncle Ambrosia and mother and father remain inviolate -- the mother slipping into death when her reason has been confused by the new ways, the father stolid and disciplined in the midst of his manifold tragedies. For Maroucha, all-loving and unknowing, disappears with a gringo pimp; 14 year old Isidro is condemned to a reformatory after raping a girl with three companions; handsome, slow Jorge escapes to San Francisco with dishonored Delores in the hope of making a new start; and earthy Constanza seeks love and death in the harbor with a desperate Mexican smuggler. A book with an emotional impact that resembles The Grapes of Wrath and Cry The Beloved Country which readers will find expands their humanity and their understanding and which has much to offer libraries in communities with any sort of rural immigrant groups. Sociologically based, this has a humor along with its sadness and a pathos with its grim reality.