Out of Darkness is a heartbreaking and powerful read. This is a story about racism, disaster, love and hope.
Naomi is a 17-year-old Mexican living with her half siblings and white stepfather in New London, Texas, in 1937. Naomi is in danger of her stepfather's wrath and abuse, but she'll do anything for her siblings.
Wash is a black teen who's been living with racism his whole life; he goes to a inferior black school while the white kids go to the state-of-the-art school down the road, and he's tired of keeping his eyes to the ground. Naomi and Wash fall in love. It's against the rules--they've crossed a line.
Henry is a changed man. According to his pastor, if he lives for the Lord he'll have a better life. Henry is haunted by the death of his wife, but he finally has his children and stepdaughter with him. He's trying to bring his family together, if only Naomi would love him.
Beto and his twin sister Cari love Naomi and want to hear every story she knows about their mother. Beto thinks that living in New London with Henry won't be so bad, since he'll gets to go to a new school and finally get a pet cat. Maybe they can be a family after all.
Out of Darkness is written from multiple points of view and is based around the historical 1937 New London, Texas school explosion. Perez does an excellent job of portraying the racism and segregation that plagued Texas in the 1930s. She gives warmth and feeling to a heartbreaking read.