In the Wyoming territory in 1885, life is tough, especially for Michael Purdy. An outcast in the small town of Rock Springs, he's either bullied and bloodied, or ignored. Michael feels he might as well be a ghost in this rough coal-mining town.
But life is even harder for Joseph Young, a Chinese American boy and Michael's secret ally. Despised by the white miners, the Chinese work in dangerous conditions, struggling against poverty and racism. Still, Joseph yearns to be a "real American" -- a dream his father and the other Chinese laborers can't understand.
When the town's growing resentment toward the Chinese explodes, Michael and Joseph must test their unlikely friendship and trust each other with their lives.---from the publisher
320 pages 978-0060008314 Ages 10-13
Keywords: historical fiction, Asian American, Asian American author, prejudice, racism, 19th century, mining, friends, friendship, part of a series, 10 year old, 11 year old, 12 year old, 13 year old, social justice, poverty