Partly Cloudy

      Gary Soto
Partly Cloudy

A poignant, humorous collection by acclaimed poet Gary Soto

The fleeting emotions of teenagers, as changeable as the weather, ring true in these emotionally resonant poems. Told from the point of view of both boys and girls, narrators of various ethnicities fall in love for the first time, pine over crushes, and brood over broken hearts. Tender, lighthearted, and surprising, this collection will capture teens, tweens, and anyone who remembers what it's like to be a young person in love.


Read online

    The Afterlife

      Gary Soto
The Afterlife

You'd think a knife in the ribs would be the end of things, but for Chuy, that's when his life at last gets interesting. He finally sees that people love him, faces the consequences of his actions, finds in himself compassion and bravery . . . and even stumbles on what may be true love.

A funny, touching, and wholly original story by one of the finest authors writing for young readers today.


Read online

    Accidental Love

      Gary Soto
Accidental Love

It all starts when Marisa picks up the wrong cell phone. When she returns it to Rene, she feels curiously drawn to him. But Marisa and Rene aren't exactly a match made in heaven. For one thing, Marisa is a chola; she's a lot of girl, and she's not ashamed of it. Skinny Rene gangles like a sackful of elbows and wears a calculator on his belt. In other words, he's a geek. So why can't Marisa stay away from him?

Includes a glossary of Spanish words and phrases.


Read online

    Mercy on These Teenage Chimps

      Gary Soto
Mercy on These Teenage Chimps

On his thirteenth birthday, Ronnie woke up feeling like a chimp—all long armed, big eared, and gangly. Now his best friend, Joey, has turned thirteen, too—and after Joey humiliates himself in front of a cute girl, he climbs a tree and refuses to come down. So Ronnie sets out to woo the girl on Joey's behalf. After all, teenage chimps have to stick together.


Read online

    The Pool Party

      Gary Soto
The Pool Party

Rudy Herrera is surprised and excited when he gets an invitation to a pool party. It's from Tiffany Perez, the richest and most popular girl in school.

Rudy's grandmother, "El Shorty," thinks he is going off to shoot pool. His sister, Estela, warns him not to make a fool of himself, or worse, embarass her. Rudy's father teaches him how to make small talk and tells him Tiffany will like him because he's a real person, not a phony.

All Rudy cares about is what to wear, what kinds of dives to do, and what to bring Tiffany. When the big day arrives, Rudy is in high spirits. Will he make a big splash at the pool party?

From Grandfather "El Shorty" to Little Rudy, the Herreras are a family who not only live and work together, but love and enjoy one another. Gary Soto, poet and storyteller, gives young readers a story of simple pleasures, simply told and simply wonderful.


Read online

    The Skirt

      Gary Soto
The Skirt

Miata has left the beautiful folkl¾rico skirt her mother wore in Mexico on the bus. She was going to wear the skirt on Sunday when her dance group performed folkl¾rico. Can Miata and her friend Ana rescue the precious skirt in time? A warm-hearted story about a contemporary Mexican-American family.


Read online

    Living Up the Street

      Gary Soto
Living Up the Street

In a prose that is so beautiful it is poetry, we see the world of growing up and going somewhere through the dust and heat of Fresno's industrial side and beyond: It is a boy's coming of age in the barrio, parochial school, attending church, public summer school, and trying to fall out of love so he can join in a Little League baseball team.

His is a clarity that rings constantly through the warmth and wry reality of these sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic, always human remembrances.


Read online

    Help Wanted

      Gary Soto
Help Wanted

With real wit and heart, Gary Soto takes readers into the lives of young people in ten funny, heartbreaking tales.

Meet Carolina, who writes to Miss Manners for help not just with etiquette but with bigger messes in her life; Javier, who knows the stories his friend Veronica tells him are lies, but can't find a way to prove it—and many other kids, each caught up in the difficulties of figuring out what it means to be alive.


Read online

    Facts of Life

      Gary Soto
Facts of Life

What do Gaby Lopez, Michael Robles, and Cynthia Rodriguez have in common? These three kids join other teens and tweens in Gary Soto's new short story collection, in which the hard-knock facts of growing up are captured with humor and poignance.

Filled with annoying siblings, difficult parents, and first loves, these stories are a masterful reminder of why adolescence is one of the most frustrating and fascinating times of life.


Read online