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Hispanic Heritage in Young Adult Fiction

National Hispanic Heritage Month

Every year from September 15th to October 15th, our country observes National Hispanic Heritage Month by recognizing the vast contributions made by Americans whose heritage comes from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.  

We hope that you’ll join us in celebrating by reading some amazing books that were created by authors whose heritage and background comes from hispanic countries.  This list presents just a small sampling of suggestions -- there are so many wonderful stories in our collection, enough to keep you reading diversely all year long!

Clap When You Land


Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo (9th grade & up)

YA F Acevedo

Award winning powerhouse Acevedo, author of Poet X and With the Fire On High, has created another moving verse novel that is garnering its own accolades.  

When her father dies in a plane crash while coming to visit her in the Dominican Republic, Camino finds out that he has another family and life in New York -- a secret neither family knew.

The New David Espinoza


The New David Espinoza by Fred Aceves (9th grade & up)

YA F Aceves

Enough.  David Espinoza is done being picked on, bullied, mocked, and humiliated for his small stature and weak body.  At first, bodybuilding seems to be the cure-all that he’s been looking for, but soon David becomes addicted to his new looks and power and craves more, leading him to make dangerous decisions that result in dark changes that affect more than just his physical appearance.



Labyrinth Lost

Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova (9th grade & up)

YA F Cordova

Labyrinth Lost is the first in the Brooklyn Brujas fantasy trilogy, about three sisters who belong to a family with a strong core of magical powers.  Alex, Lula, and Rose each have their own adventure which includes personal, internal discoveries as well as battles to keep their family safe.   Continue reading with Bruja Born and Wayward Witch.

The Tenth Girl


Tenth Girl by Sarah Faring (10th grade & up)

YA F Faring

This gothic psychological thriller is perfect for chill seekers. In an attempt to escape from the sorrow and danger of her life in Buenos Aires, Mavi takes a job as a teacher in an isolated, elite boarding school in Patagonia, despite the rumors of a ghostly presence and the strange behavior of the inhabitants of Vaccaro School.



American Road Trip

American Road Trip by Patrick Flores-Scott (7th grade & up)

YA F Flores-Scott

With economic troubles and the deployment of his brother to Iraq, the Avila family has seen some tough times lately, but Teodoro is just starting to think that he might have a chance to turn things around.  When his beloved brother returns from service obviously in need of help, however, T must drop everything to embark on a road trip with Manny -- a trip that will hopefully help both brothers figure out what’s next for themselves and their family.

The Resolution


The Resolutions by Mia Garcia (9th grade & up)

YA F Garcia

In an attempt to reestablish their lifelong friendship, four Latinx friends get together on New Year’s Eve, and instead of creating resolutions for themselves, they dare each other to tackle worthwhile but scary feats of personal growth.  Taking a chance on love again, being brave enough to fight against family expectations, and more -- it’s going to be a wild new year.



Barely Missing Everything

Barely Missing Everything by Matt Mendez (9th grade & up)

YA F Mendez

Juan, JD, and Fabi have dreams: to go to college on a basketball scholarship, to make a mark in the world of film-making, and to be able to do more than just scrape by as a single mother.  With talent, hard work, and a little luck, these dreams should be achievable, but one hit after another makes the trio wonder if the American Dream was ever really a possibility.



Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older (9th grade & up)

YA F Older

Sierra’s plans for the summer include working on her art, lots of relaxing, and fun with friends, not battling evil in an attempt to save her Brooklyn community.  But that’s exactly what happens when Sierra learns that her Puerto Rican family has the power to shadowshape -- the ability to infuse the souls of their ancestors into the art that they create.  Armed with her recently discovered talent, the help of a new friend, and a fierce love for her family, friends, and community, Sierra is determined to defeat her enemy and keep her loved ones safe.


We Are Not From Here

We Are Not From Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez (9th grade & up)

YA F Sanchez

Three desperate teens risk everything when they resolve to leave their beloved, but dangerous, hometown in Guatemala to journey to the United States in the hopes that they can find a life of safety and possibility.  With so much left behind and such a treacherous journey ahead, a happy ending is not assured, but it’s a chance they have to take. 

I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter


I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sanchez (9th grade & up)

YA F Sanchez

Olga was perfect: Obedient, polite, a beacon in the community, and at peace with the path her parents set out for her.  Now that her older sister is gone, Julia is expected to slip into that empty space; but argumentative, independent, free-thinking Julia is far from perfect, and it seems that maybe Olga wasn’t either.  Dealing with her grief, her parents expectations, her contrary plans for herself, the gradually revealed truth about her sister, and issues both internal and external, Julia must find a way to settle into her role as her family’s only daughter -- even if she’s far from perfect.


Published by on September 21, 2020
Last Modified November 25, 2020