In this authentic, humorous, and gorgeously written debut novel about privacy, waking up, and speaking up, Senator Anthony Ruiz is running for president. Throughout his successful political career he has always had his daughter’s vote, but a presidential campaign brings a whole new level of scrutiny to sheltered fifteen-year-old Mariana and the rest of her Cuban American family, from a 60 Minutes–style tour of their house to tabloids doctoring photos and inventing scandals. As tensions rise within the Ruiz family, Mari begins to learn about the details of her father’s political positions, and she realizes that her father is not the man she thought he was.
But how do you find your voice when everyone’s watching? When it means disagreeing with your father—publicly? What do you do when your dad stops being your hero? Will Mari get a chance to confront her father? If she does, will she have the courage to seize it?
She is accompanied in her pursuit of the truth by her friends, both old and new, even though she feels as though her family couldn’t possibly understand what is propelling her to make such drastic choices when they are so present in the spotlight, working to win the primary and eventually the White House.
When Mari discovers that the water in Miami is tainted, and that a friend is being affected by it personally, there’s no turning back. She must question everything, including all of the decisions her father has made, the votes he has cast while in the Senate, and how her mother fits into it all. She wants to do what’s right by her family, but she finds it difficult when so much seems to be at stake outside of her own sheltered world.
‘Running’ will make readers question themselves and their beliefs again and again. It will enlighten and inspire, all while focusing on what changes can be made to help engage in social action in meaningful, relevant, active ways. It will help readers discover more about their comfort levels and how to cope with new understandings of ideas that seemed clear-cut, yet might not truly be. It will propel readers forward, and show how family and friends shape our lives in essential and transformative ways.