Under a Painted Sky: Moving Tale, Inspiring Story

Speak Publishing

Speak Publishing

Rebecca Vialpando, Staff Writer

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Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee is an inspiring and moving tale about two girls traveling to California during the Gold Rush in 1849. The story starts out with the main character, fifteen-year old Samantha, explaining how she just killed a man who tried to rape her. She takes the reader through the list of events leading up to that event, and she suspects that she will be sentenced to death as she is Chinese and the man she killed is very well-known. A girl named Annamae, a slave, sees what Samantha has done. They both decide to travel to California to escape the trials of their lives, while also disguising their gender so they won’t be tracked down. While traveling, they meet companions who aid them in their trip. Many series of events happen during the story, leaving the reader on edge for the characters.

This book is popular, earning a 5/5 on Common Sense Media, and a 4/5 on Goodreads. Many people loved how the girls disguised as boys try to keep the secrets from their traveling companions, as it added more depth to the story. The many problems the characters face together built up the levels of strength and emotion not only in the main characters, but in the secondary ones as well. The emotions of even the smallest of characters are described with immense detail. Under a Painted Sky shows how people of color were treated during the time period described in the book and the struggles people went through as a result. This book will please people who enjoy an adventure with both light-hearted and dark touches, with a little bit of romance, poetry, and storytelling thrown in it.

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