Yara Garcia 's family has lived in Havana, Cuba, for several generations, but when Communist ruler Fidel Castro clamps down on personal freedoms, the Garcias are forced to flee the island. In Miami, where they settle with other exiles, 13-year-old Yara struggles to learn a new language, make new friends, and adapt to a strange land with foreign customs. So do her parents, sisters, and grandparents, who adjust to new lives with varying success. As tension develops in the family, Yara realizes how different she is from her classmates, most of whom are allowed more privileges than she is. Set in the turbulent years of 1967 and 1968, this poignant book about immigration and separation provides a mesmerizing account of a young woman's resiliency in the face of change and a family's efforts to make a new life far from home.