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Newly orphaned, young Annyrose escapes from the villainous O.O. Mary and falls under the protection of a proud and fearless Mexican bandit, regarded as the Robin Hood of the California Gold Rush.
Annyrose wants only to search for her older brother who had run off to the gold diggings, but she finds herself galloping beside the celebrated outlaw in his own quest. He is hunting down the last of a band of "Yankee" riffraff who wronged him, an event that turned the innocent young Mexican into an avenging terror of the roads.
With his characteristic story twists and turns and surprises, Newbery Award winner Sid Fleischman lights up a dark corner in this Gold Rush drama set against a firestorm of bigotry ignited by the lust for riches.
As for this legendary bandit, dashing about on his silken black horse and breathing fire, he actually lived.
02 Rebecca Caudill Young Reader's Book Award Nominee Master List, 00-01 Charlie May Simon Book Award Reading List, 02 Nutmeg State Children's Book Award Masterlist, 00-01 Children's Choice Award Masterlist, 00-01 William Allen White Children's Book Award Masterlist, 01-02 Land of Enchantment Book Award Masterlist (Gr. 6-9), and 00-01 Sequoyah Children's Book Award Masterlist