The Circuit: Stories from the Life of a Migrant Child
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|Genre||Children's autobiographical novel|
|Publisher||University of New Mexico Press|
|Media type||Print (Paperback)|
The Circuit: Stories from the Life of a Migrant Child is an autobiographical novel by Francisco Jiménez based in part on his journey from Mexico to the United States of America. The book, narrated by the child's point of view, follows the life of young Panchito and his family as they move from one location to another to harvest crops in the United States. The book has three sequels, Breaking Through, Reaching Outand the fourth in the series, Taking Hold: From Migrant Childhood to Columbia University. The author translated the first three novels into Spanish under the titles Cajas de cartón(cardboard boxes), Senderos fronterizos and Mas allá de mi respectively. All published by Houghton Mifflin. He is also the author of La Mariposa and The Christmas Gift/El regalo de Navidad also published by Houghton Mifflin.
In Francisco Jiménez's book the main character is himself and his family. When they first move to California from Mexico they have high hopes and big dreams. How big you may ask? Well i'm talking they sweep money off the streets big, all thanks to comedians jokes that were taken too far. When they get there though, they realize that their dreams are far from true, as they travel from camp to camp trying to make a stable income. Also, the parents have more children almost every chapter, so that stable income thing gets harder and harder as it goes. At the beginning of the book, the main character is oblivious to these things, then notices how the way they live repeats year after year, and how he fears becoming like his dad because he believes this circuit will take over his life, (this is how the series was named, recognizing THE CIRCUIT, BREAKING THOUGH the circuit, REACHING OUT of this repetitive life, and GRABBING HOLD of a stable future
The Circuit is now regularly used as class reads from middle schools across the country.