What worked: Omg, this is one powerful gut-wrenching story that's is very similar to what's happening under this current administration. Vali's story is one that other undocumented citizens have gone through in order to seek refugee in the United States.
The first chapter grabs readers with one young undocumented immigrant trying to get into California and the horrific thing that happens next. Readers witness the hatred, racism that some have against anyone who is labeled 'illegal'. Vali's journey takes her to New York where the kindness of a nun directs her to a coyote that is supposed to take her to California. Much happens along the way. She witnesses terrible violations against those who just want to become citizens, tent cities where those who are rounded up are forced into slave labor to pay for what they 'took' from the US, separations of families, and those who try to take advantage of those in need.
Very realistic portrayals throughout this story that don't hold anything back on the cruel methods a futuristic President of the US uses in order to not only stay in power, but to deny rights to those who don't fit what he considers a true US citizen.
Haunting, gripping with it's tale of what could very well happen in our own country. This is a must read. Mostly though Vali's courage, strength will stay with readers long after they finish the book.