Abuela, Don't Forget Me (Hardcover)
A Finalist for the 2023 YALSA Excellence in Young Adult Nonfiction Award.
Rex Ogle’s companion to Free Lunch and Punching Bag weaves humor, heartbreak, and hope into life-affirming poems that honor his grandmother’s legacy.
In his award-winning memoir Free Lunch, Rex Ogle’s abuela features as a source of love and support. In this companion-in-verse, Rex captures and celebrates the powerful presence a woman he could always count on—to give him warm hugs and ear kisses, to teach him precious words in Spanish, to bring him to the library where he could take out as many books as he wanted, and to offer safety when darkness closed in. Throughout a coming of age marked by violence and dysfunction, Abuela’s red-brick house in Abilene, Texas, offered Rex the possibility of home, and Abuela herself the possibility for a better life.
Abuela, Don’t Forget Me is a lyrical portrait of the transformative and towering woman who believed in Rex even when he didn’t yet know how to believe in himself.
About the Author
Rex Ogle was born and raised mostly in Texas. He received the 2020 YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Award for his memoir Free Lunch. A former children’s book editor in New York City, Rex now lives in Los Angeles with his partner.
Ogle pays clear-eyed tribute to his maternal abuela while covering heavy topics such as child abuse, financial precarity, and racism in this searing verse memoir
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
The magnitude of intergenerational relationships, deep connections, and acceptance shine in Ogle’s foreword and poems, which are clearly love letters to his abuela, captured like fireflies in a jar. A must-purchase for all YA nonfiction collections, Ogle’s work speaks directly to what so many young people experience and offers them hope.
— School Library Journal (starred review)
A visceral window into a survivor’s childhood and a testament to the enduring influence of unconditional love.
— Kirkus Reviews
The humor, reflection, and heart present in these pages remind readers to cherish their bonds with their loved ones and that small moments can last a lifetime.