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Chavez Book Clubs

Learning About History, Social Justice and the Fight for Equality

This fall, Cesar Chavez Service Club members will once again have an opportunity to participate in an after-school book club at five schools in San Diego Unified School District and one school in the Chula Vista Elementary District. These Book Clubs reinforce the 10 Values of the Chavez Service Clubs through a supported reading program led by club volunteers, Carmen Brooks and others.

Chavez Book Club members read age appropriate fiction and non-fiction award winning books (Newbery Honor, National Book Award, Sibert Informational Book Medal Honor winners). In Club meetings, Chavez Book Club members discuss the themes and characters in the books and work on writing projects to express their thoughts about what they are reading.

We love the enthusiasm our Chavista's have when reading these exciting books. They love the Book Club meetings and the chance to talk about these books with their friends. Most importantly, this extra reading and the critical thinking development that goes with it, is helping our Chavistas improve their grades and become better prepared for advancement in their school careers.

Below is our Book List with clickable links to Amazon in case you would like to read them with us. We have also put these books on an Amazon Wish List (CLICK HERE to see the list). If you want to purchase books to donate to our Chavistas use the Club address for shipping:

Cesar Chavez Service Clubs
PO Box 131156
San Diego, CA 92170

Chavez Book Clubs - Reading List (with Amazon links)

The Circuit. by Francisco Jiménez 

"The Circuit," the story of young Panchito and his trumpet, is one of the most widely anthologized stories in Chicano literature. At long last, Jiménez offers more about the wise, sensitive little boy who has grown into a role model for subsequent generations of immigrants.

Breaking Through, Francisco Jiménez

At the age of fourteen, Francisco Jiménez, together with his older brother Roberto and his mother, are caught by la migra. Forced to leave their home in California, the entire family travels all night for twenty hours by bus, arriving at the U.S. and Mexican border in Nogales, Arizona. In the months and years that follow during the late 1950s-early 1960s, Francisco, his mother and father, and his seven brothers and sister not only struggle to keep their family together.

Reaching Out, Francisco Jiménez

From the perspective of the young adult he was then, Francisco Jiménez describes the challenges he faced in his efforts to continue his education.

Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom, by Elspeth Leacock (Adapter), Susan Buckley (Adapter), Lynda Blackmon Lowery (Author), PJ Loughran (Illustrator)

One of the youngest participants in the 1965 voting rights march in Alabama, Lowery provides a moving first-person account of her experience. Through this thought-provoking volume, the picture of an incredibly courageous young woman emerges.

Baseball in April and Other Stories, by: Gary Soto

The Mexican American author Gary Soto draws on his own experience of growing up in California’s Central Valley in this finely crafted collection of eleven short stories that reveal big themes in the small events of daily life.

Inside Out and Back Again, by Thanhha Lai

Inside Out and Back Again is a #1 New York Times bestseller, a Newbery Honor Book, and a winner of the National Book Award!  Inspired by the author's childhood experience as a refugee—fleeing Vietnam after the Fall of Saigon and immigrating to Alabama.

Song of the Trees, by Mildred D. Taylor

Another powerful story in the Logan Family Saga and companion to Mildred D. Taylor's Newbery Award-winning Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry.  With the depression bearing down on her family, there isn’t much that Cassie Logan can count on anymore

Crossing the Wire, by Will Hobbs

In this riveting, action-packed novel from award-winning author Will Hobbs, a teenage boy hoping to help his loved ones must fight for his life as he makes the dangerous journey across the Mexican border into the United States.

A Long Walk To Water, by Linda Sue Park

The New York Times bestseller A Long Walk to Water begins as two stories, told in alternating sections, about two eleven-year-olds in Sudan, a girl in 2008 and a boy in 1985. The girl, Nya, is fetching water from a pond that is two hours’ walk from her home: she makes two trips to the pond every day. The boy, Salva, becomes one of the "lost boys" of Sudan, refugees who cover the African continent on foot as they search for their families and for a safe place to stay.

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