Maria Louisa, or Malú as she prefers to be called, is dreading her first day at Posada Middle School. She wonders if she will find her people--the ones who she can be completely herself with. Because Malú loves punk rock, skateboarding, zines, and Soyrizo, but she doesn’t love cilantro or speaking Spanish. Malú also worries about disappointing her mother by not being Mexican or senorita enough. Will Malú learn to follow the first rule of punk and be herself or will she be defeated by all the expectations?
The First Rule of Punk is a great addition to the middle school reading world. Malú is an endearing spunky character who deals with the challenges kids face every day. Her voice and story are both creative and relatable with fun and artistic zines thrown in to catch the reader’s interest. I recommend her story to all middle school readers, but especially those who need a little help remembering to be themselves.