Brief Description: 13 yo mixed race Native American orphan girl wonders about her heritage as she and her brother serve a caring Californio (Native Californian) family. A Dear America book.
Historical Era: 19th Century
Date Range: 1846
Keywords: Bear Flag Rebellion, bull fight, Califonria missions and ranchos, cockfight, Dia de los Muertos, Johann Sutter, John Fremont, Los Posadas, Mariano Vallejo, Native American Suisan, orphan, Our Lady of Guadalupe
Original Publication: 2001
Suitable for Grades: 3-8th
Target Audience: Chapter Book, Middle Grade
This epistolary novel from Scholastic’s Dear America series features thirteen year old Rosalia, placed as a servant in the household of the Medina family on their Alta California rancho, along her younger brother Domingo. Though a servant, she is educated and befriends the daughters of her employers. She strives to learn her history and identity as a mestizo – half Suisun Native American and half white. She is caught up in the historical events of the Bear Flag Revolt, during which the Californios struggled to retain control of their lands.