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Sisters =: Hermanas

3.36  ·  Rating Details ·  119 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
The lives of a fourteen-year-old Mexican prostitute, living in the United States illegally, and a wealthy American girl intersect in a dramatic way.
Hardcover, 65 pages
Published November 1st 1993 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P (first published 1993)
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Sisters = by Gary PaulsenTopsys & Turvys by Peter NewellI Love You More by Laura DukstaRound Trip by Ann JonasGirls' Night Out, Boys' Night In by Jessica Adams
Double Sided Books
27 books — 7 voters
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306 books — 135 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mar 28, 2009 Sarah rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kiri Case
Dec 07, 2016 Kiri Case rated it liked it
Shelves: engl-420

This book follows the parallel plot lines of two young women who are leading totally different lives...or so it seems. Rosa is an illegal immigrant come to America to make money for her struggling family back home. She soon falls into the only position she can hold that will make her enough money: prostitution. She lives the life of a prostitute, but dreams of one day being a famous model. Traci is a white, rich American whose entire life has been planned out by her controll
Oct 15, 2016 Lupe rated it liked it
Interesting format. It's a flip book; English on one side, Spanish on the other side. This novella explores the similarities between two teens in Texas. One is a Mexican immigrant, the other is a suburban cheerleader. I wish it had been longer.
Dec 26, 2015 Carlisa rated it it was amazing

This book is about two girls, Rosa and Traci. Rosa is a 14-year-old illegal immigrant in Texas, working at night in the streets as a prostitute in order to send money home to her mother. Traci is a 14-year-old bleached-blonde beauty queen in the same Texas city as Rosa, whose mother primes her everyday to be perfect and look perfect...because that is how she will succeed in life. These girls' lives intersect for a brief moment to see how truly similar they are.

This book w
Apr 30, 2009 Julie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book opens us to the life of Rosa, a 14-year old undocumented immigrant girl that has turned to prostitution for survival, to send money to her mother in Mexico and to save money for her dreams of becoming a glamorous model. On the other side of the spectrum, there is Traci, a white 14-year old girl who is equally entrenched in dreams surrounding beauty and glamor and whose mother lives through her by subjecting her daughter to beauty pageants and clothes and makeup that make Traci look ...more
Debbie Henderson
Sep 08, 2010 Debbie Henderson rated it it was ok
Genre: bilingual
Issues: racial equality, illegal immigration, prostitution, popularity

In Sisters/Hermanas, Gary Paulsen tells the stories of two girls the same age living in Texas. Rosa, a 14-year-old illegal immigrant from Mexico, works as a prostitute to earn money to send back to her mother in Mexico. Traci, a 14-year-old upper middle class citizen, wants exactly what her mother pressures her to do: become the most popular girl in the school and make the cheerleading team as the best team mem
Jeffrey Sosa
This short fictional novel revolves around the stories of two young fourteen-year-old girls as they interact with the world around them. Gary Paulson introduces us to Tracy, an upper-class white girl with a controlling mother; and Rosa, an illegal immigrant who is trying to support her family. He uses both to explore several adult themes, similarities in culture, and to toy with the idea of how similar the girls may be regardless of social or class positions. Overall, I think this book falls ...more
Oct 21, 2009 Kathryn rated it liked it
Novella/Racial experience/Connection

So - for the record, I don't like Gary Paulsen books. As a general rule they bore me, and I get irritated by the narration. However, Sisters, a startlingly short novella (if we have those in today's literary world) gives us the intertwining of two 14 year old girls - Rosa - an illegal immigrant who works as a hooker at night and dreams of being on the cover of magazines - and Traci - white, upperclass, who dreams of being a cheerleader. The characters are surp
Elizabeth Guzman
Oct 22, 2013 Elizabeth Guzman rated it really liked it
This book focuses on the lives of two young girls Rosa an illegal immigrant who prostitutes herself to make a living and Traci a wealthy American. Although they live very different lives they both are connected with the obsession of beauty. Rosa believes that beauty is having perfect clothes and a perfect body, while Traci is being taught that that beauty is flawless and that its the key to happiness. While reading this book i kind of got a little confused in which chapter was talking about ...more
Oct 27, 2011 Lindsay rated it it was ok
Shelves: 420-books
I can't decide if I liked this book or not. It was an interesting portrayal of two different stereotypes in a way that made them the same, but it also was a bit odd. The fact that the girls are also just 14 makes it even odder. I did like the idea of these two girls from different backgrounds not being so different, it was the way that he went about it that I didn't care for as much. I think that I would give this to students, maybe someone who is struggling with longer texts, but I would be ...more
Nov 21, 2008 Lora rated it did not like it
Shelves: young-adult-lit
This book was extremely short and had very little, if any plot. It was told in two voices, flipping back and forth between Rosa, an illegal immigrant/child prostitute, and Traci, a vain cheerleader. It was filled with stereotypes and as far as I can tell has very little value in the literary world. It's only redeeming quality is that in one volume it tells the story in both English and Spanish. At the most it might be used as a language teaching tool.
Femi Vance
Jan 24, 2011 Femi Vance rated it it was ok
I picked up this book because it was bilingual, short, and seemed to hold promise for some interesting social commentary. I was very disappointed. Paulsen spent too much time describing the characters and too little time letting the reader witness them living. Even though I was looking for short I felt like this book ended before it delivered its message. At least I was able to practice my Spanish.
Mar 30, 2008 Bobbi rated it it was ok
Shelves: teen-books
I'm not sure how I feel about this book. The author attempts to convince the reader that two girls on opposite sides of the economic spectrum are alike, like sisters, in the way that they sell themselves - one as a prostitute and the other a popular cheerleader-beauty queen. The chance meeting of the girls was not credible. It is a bilingual novel that can be turned around for the other language. Now, I'll tackle the spanish....Si, puedo leer espanol, un pequito. *snicker*
Eliza Mansuetto Uribe
Sep 26, 2010 Eliza Mansuetto Uribe rated it it was ok
There is a very limited Spanish language selection at my library. So I guess I was forced to read this. Very simple, short, and surface. I read it in like an hour. Not much to it, but still, I finished it all the way to the end so it must have kept me interested somewhat. That is why I gave it two stars instead of one.
Brandon O'Neill
Feb 27, 2008 Brandon O'Neill rated it really liked it
This book literally took me 20 minutes to read - it's only 65 pages, but is pretty powerful nevertheless. It is about 2 girls - one is Rosa, a 14 year old illegal immigrant prostitute (that is a mouthful - no pun intended) and the other is Traci, a 14 year old trying to be perfect cheerleader who have a quick chance encounter. My first non-Brian themed book by Paulsen, and it was good.
Mary Ann
Dec 06, 2013 Mary Ann rated it really liked it
The 'haves' and 'have nots'; what a sad commentary on our society in more than one way. Have had this book for years and just now got around to reading. Paulsen did a fine job of pointing out obvious circumstances that we seldom do anything about, but stand by and say 'what can I do?' Rosa wants to help her mother and Traci seems to be her mother's puppet.
Jul 27, 2012 Lissa rated it it was ok
I was curious to see where Gary Paulsen would go with one of the few non-male, non-white protagonists he's ever created, and the book was beautifully written but severely lacking in plot and description.
Mindee Ricks
Dec 10, 2015 Mindee Ricks rated it did not like it
Shelves: eng-420
One girl is a prostitute, the other is a high school beauty queen. They end up meeting and realizing that they are the same. Short, in Spanish and English.
Apr 23, 2016 Ashley rated it really liked it
Loved, loved what I read, but couldn't it be just a bit longer? It's much too short for my liking, but definitely a good read
Katie Snowflake
Apr 07, 2016 Katie Snowflake rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2016
I understand the struggles of both of the girls but what was the point? The climax happened at the end and there was no resolution.
Oct 31, 2014 priscilla rated it it was ok
2.5. This just needed to be longer. The pace is almost leisurely & then we're rushed into this magical realism-ish ending.
Elizabeth Lund
Interesting exercise; really a short story published as a book. Characters were unique and skilfully written. I ached for Rosa because of the outcome--and not because she was a prostitute!
Cynthiaa Fraancoo
Cynthiaa Fraancoo rated it it was amazing
Dec 01, 2014
Kay Haas
Kay Haas rated it really liked it
Sep 17, 2011
Mia G
Mia G rated it really liked it
Sep 30, 2012
Izacc Anderegg
Izacc Anderegg rated it it was amazing
May 12, 2010
M rated it liked it
Jul 11, 2010
Katy Alexandra
this book is soooo good :D
Cindy rated it liked it
Sep 20, 2011
Din rated it liked it
Apr 27, 2016
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Although he was never a dedicated student, Paulsen developed a passion for reading at an early age. After a librarian gave him a book to read--along with his own library card--he was hooked. He began spending hours alone in the basement of his apartment building, reading one book after another.

Running away from home at the age of 14 and traveling with a carnival, Paulsen acquired a taste for adve
More about Gary Paulsen...

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