Canned and Crushed, by Bibi Belford

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Canned and Crushed, by Bibi Belford

Canned and Crushed, by Bibi Belford

Canned and Crushed, by Bibi Belford

Free Ebook Canned and Crushed, by Bibi Belford

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Canned and Crushed, by Bibi Belford

When Sandro Zapote finds out his little sister needs heart surgery, he is determined to help his parents raise the money they’ll need to help her get better. Sandro’s dad is in the states illegally and must work two jobs to support the family. For one, he picks up roadkill for the department of streets and sanitation and gets paid by the carcass. For the other, he collects scrap metal to recycle for cash. Sandro helps his dad with some of the scrap metal heavy lifting, and one headboard, a weight bench, some gutters, and a few car parts later, Sandro has a brilliant idea: can collecting. Save the environment. Save his family. Maybe even save some spending money for the fabulous, fast new bike he’s been coveting.

Well-meaning and with funny inner monologue, Sandro is the kind of person you can’t help but cheer for. He’s a boy who loves drawing, soccer, and his little sister. And whether he’s fishing a fuzzy, dust-coated turtle out from under his sister’s bed or organizing a school-wide can drive all by himself, Sandro is a smart, self-aware hero, who makes just a few mistakes along the way.

Canned and Crushed, by first-time author Bibi Belford, gives Sandro a funny, relatable, readable voice, while being fresh and original. It’s a story that will open its readers’ eyes, dealing with issues of illegal immigration, unemployment, racism and religious persecution, bullying, and more—carefully and with a light and often humorous touch. This is a cross between The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian and Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and it’s a book no kid will want to miss.

Sky Pony Press, with our Good Books, Racehorse and Arcade imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of books for young readers—picture books for small children, chapter books, books for middle grade readers, and novels for young adults. Our list includes bestsellers for children who love to play Minecraft; stories told with LEGO bricks; books that teach lessons about tolerance, patience, and the environment, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

  • Sales Rank: #1448697 in Books
  • Published on: 2015-03-03
  • Original language: English
  • Number of items: 1
  • Dimensions: 8.30″ h x .90″ w x 5.80″ l, .0 pounds
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • 192 pages

From School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—At first glance, 11-year-old Sandro Zapote’s precocious, cheery attitude belies his difficult family situation. His engineer father—unable to find gainful employment due to his undocumented status—struggles with a back injury and works several menial jobs, one of which includes picking up roadkill. Sandro dutifully balances homework and soccer with helping his dad. Familial pressures intensify when the tween’s younger sister, Girasol, is diagnosed with a serious heart condition requiring costly surgery. While his mom and sister travel to Mexico for the procedure, the boy and his dad are left to fend for themselves. Though Sandro tries to put on a brave face, it’s clear that he feels unmoored by the separation; he lashes out by playing a vile prank on his teacher and bullying a fellow classmate. Hoping to ease his family’s financial woes, Sandro hatches a far-fetched plan to install a can recycling center at his school. Belford’s debut contains complex characterization: Sandro is affable and witty, yet his quick temper and poor decision-making will ring true to young readers. VERDICT Despite some slight overplotting—such salient issues as disability, poverty, and illegal immigration are raised but given short shrift—readers are likely to stick with Sandro till the sweet, wobbly end.—Lalitha Nataraj, Escondido Public Library, CA

Review
“[A] never-a-dull-moment debut….fitted with an admirable, funny protagonist.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Belford compassionately reveals that there’s far more to Sandro than just his misbehavior; his family’s poverty and immigration worries lead Sandro to take on far more than an 11-year-old should. Sandro’s breezy, conversational narrative, often directed at the reader, offsets the weight of his troubles in this eye-opening story that will likely resonate with a wide audience.”—Booklist

“Belford’s debut contains complex characterization: Sandro is affable and witty, yet his quick temper and poor decision-making will ring true to young readers….readers are likely to stick with Sandro till the sweet, wobbly end.”—School Library Journal

“Holy guacamole! You’ve got to meet soccer star Sandro, whose brain is as quick as his feet—which is good because between chasing a turtle who’s an escape artist, helping his dad collect roadkill, and conquering fourth grade, he’s got to move fast. Luckily, Sandro’s the kind of kid who puts the can in can-do and the fun in funny. You’ll laugh out loud at Sandro’s adventures, sympathize with his foul-ups, and cheer for his wins. Also, watch out: you’ll never look at duct tape or fourth grade the same way again!” —Valerie Tripp, best-selling author of the American Girl series books

“Sandro is the type of kid you rush to sit by in the cafeteria just so you can hear what he says or see what he does next. Canned and Crushed will charm you, as Sandro is a sweet-hearted, accident-prone mischief-maker you won’t forget. The only thing bigger than the messes he finds himself in is his heart.” —Beth Vrabel, author of Pack of Dorks

From the Author
I wrote Canned and Crushed for some of my favorite students who claimed they couldn’t find any books they liked to read. While the book was being edited their current classroom teacher read them the chapters, printed on plain paper, but she didn’t tell them who wrote the book. One day she told them that the author was coming to visit to read the final chapter and answer questions. When I walked in the room, they invited me to stay and meet the special author. Were they ever surprised to find out I was the special author! They presented me with ideas for the cover and title. And they continue to tell me they love the book when I visit and ask me questions about what Sandro, the main character, is doing today and if his sister is still okay, as if the characters in the book are real people. I love that. I want to write books that show kids how important they are and that just one kid can make the world a better place. My next book deals with the friendship of two boys in 1919 in Chicago. It’s historical fiction and will be released next spring. A group of fifth graders read and reacted to the book while I was editing it. They gave it a thumbs up, and I hope you will too!

Most helpful customer reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
Great read! Sandro holds a lot of responsibility on …
By Michele Cook
Great read! Sandro holds a lot of responsibility on his shoulders when his sister gets sick and has to go for surgery in Mexico and Dad is working a few jobs. Such is the story for many of the kids in our school district. Bibi does a great job nailing the details to make this such an authentic read. Sandro is humorous and talks to the reader as he narrates.

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
Great book! The character gets in so much trouble …
By Christine DeSmet
Great book! The character gets in so much trouble that is real and heart-warming because his intentions are so good. But he’s not perfect–just like most kids. The lessons in this book are wonderful. And it’s funny, too, with a great fast pace. I was really rooting for this Hispanic boy and his family. This is the type of book that might encourage good conversations with parents and classmates. I loved how the author brought in good math problems and interesting words for kids to learn in an organic way within the story. I highly recommend this book for middle-grade readers and adults who also love middle-grade adventures.

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful.
Belford presents readers with an opportunity for discussion, learning and enjoyment.
By Gaele
A book that feels like a walk through a middle-grade school hallway, Bibi Belford has managed to capture the language of middle-schoolers while presenting a character that is often difficult to like, even as you are exposed to more of his life away from school.

Sandro Zapote is a kid in a difficult situation: his father is in the US without papers, and his little sister has a heart condition that requires treatment that is far more expensive than his family can afford. The family’s living situation gets worse when his mother and sister head to Mexico so Girasol can get treatment, leaving Sandro and his father back in the states. Worry about his sister, a solid and often single-minded determination to help his family, and Sandro’s own sense of ‘justice’ in dealing with those who wrong him give this book an all too plausible feel, while introducing issues that are difficult and controversial for adults, let alone children.

Belford uses Sandro’s desires to do good with his often and frequent moments of bad behavior, tying it back to his desires to ‘do for’ his family when not everything works out quite as he would plan. Simple childish reactions of jealousy, mischief and small vandalisms will be easy for children to understand, and they will most probably ‘side with’ Sandro in some of his actions gone horridly wrong. Underneath the mischief and mistakes is a child desperate to help his family but wholly without the real skills or options to do so.

With a few twists and unexpected help from surprise places, wonderfully rich characters and prose that feels honest and real while still presenting issues that are far more adult than one would expect in a story for children, Belford presents readers with an opportunity for discussion, learning and enjoyment.

I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.

See all 12 customer reviews…

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