THE WALLS OF PEDRO GARCIA by Kevin McColley

THE WALLS OF PEDRO GARCIA

Age Range: 10 - 14

KIRKUS REVIEW

 Pedro, 12, prides himself on being a man who's worked on Se§or de Lupe's estate beside his grandfather, Miguel, for six years. Earnestly determined to give up childish things, Pedro refuses to listen to Miguel's fanciful stories (though he's fascinated by his tales of working up north) and no longer plays by the river that runs by their hut; he dismisses Miguel's gentle conversations with the river as ``foolishness.'' When a crew with noisy machines suddenly builds a high wall cutting off access to the river and the refreshing wind that makes the servants' crowded compound livable, Pedro boldly confronts de Lupe: the wall is wrong, even unsafe. But though Pedro wins other concessions, de Lupe refuses to remove the wall; and, ironically, in confronting economic reality--he must accept what he can't change to keep his livelihood--Pedro regains part of his childhood while also becoming more truly a man. With its Hemingwayesque style and theme and heavily symbolic dreams, McColley's debut is strongly reminiscent of Gary Paulsen. The Mexican setting is generic, and events seem contrived to serve the eponymous symbol (Pedro is walled in by his self-image). Still, a thoughtful story, crafted with ingenuity--a promising first. (Fiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: March 1st, 1993
ISBN: 0-385-30806-X
Page count: 112pp
Publisher: Delacorte
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 1993




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