Series Name: Gravel Road Rural
Theme: Hi-Lo, Fiction
Diego is determined to escape his small town where animals far outnumber people. He wants to go to art school, even though his father thinks an artist's life is a road to nowhere; he didn't come to the U.S. so his son could become a starving artist. It's Diego's dream, and he slowly saves for his future by dealing weed, which is easy to come by in the Emerald Triangle. He's the dealer everyone turns to at school, but he refuses to deal in the hard stuff, like meth. His girlfriend's entire family is addicted to drugs; so he's seen its destructive power.
From the Great Plains to the borderlands to the Mississippi Delta, rural America is struggling. The population is shrinking. And the economy is shifting away from agriculture. Without a safety net, rural families struggle with depression, drug abuse, alcoholism, and other problems. Gravel Road Rural addresses the contemporary issues affecting rural America in an unflinching way.
Grade Level: 9 to 12
Approximate Grade-Level Equivalent for Series: 1.6 to 3.5
Lexile Level: HL260L