Newbery award winner and New York Times bestselling author

Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass


Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass

Candlewick Press 2013

Young adult
ISBN English edition
978-0-7636-65859-5 (hardcover)/ 978-0-7636-7164-8 (paperback)
Spanish language edition:
Yaqui Delgado Quiere Darte Una Paliza March 2016

(translated by Teresa Mlawer)
ISBN: HC: 978-0-7636-8992-6



Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass. That’s what some girl tells Piddy Sanchez one morning. Piddy doesn’t even know who Yaqui Delgado is or what she’s done to piss her off.

But Yaqui isn’t kidding around. Paddy tries to focus on finding out more about the father she’s never met and balancing honors courses with her job at the neighborhood hair salon, but avoiding Yaqui and her gang starts to take over Piddy’s life. She’s forced to decide exactly who she is versus who others are trying to make her become – and ultimately discovers a rhythm that is all her own.

Sample Chapter here

Yaqui_schoolnewspapers copy



Winner: 2014 Pura Belpré Award

Winner, International Latino Book Award, Best Young Adult Fiction/English

2013 CYBILS Award winner in fiction

A Junior Library Guild 2013 Selection

Commended title, Las Américas Award

YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults 2014

Best Books for Teens 2013, Kirkus

Best Books 2013, School Library Journal 

Blue Ribbon List 2013 Bulletin for the Center for Children’s Books

ALSC Notable Books for Children 2014

Capitol Choices Noteworthy Books for Children and Teens 2014

YALSA Top Ten Quick-Pick for Reluctant Readers

Top Ten In the Margins Pick (Library Services for Youth in Custody)

NBC News Top Ten Latino Books 2014

Westchester Fiction Award 2014

10 YA Books That Adults Will Love: Huffington Post

TAYSHA’s list 2014 (Texas Library Association) 

The Association of Children’s Librarian’s of Northern California 2013 Bay Views Distinguished list

Nevada Library Association’s Young Readers Choice winner 2016

Canyon Reader Award finalist 2017 

Virginia State Reading list (high school) 2014

Virginia People’s Choice Award finalist,2014

The Joan Kaywell Books Save Lives Award, 2015

The North Carolina School Library Media Association YA Book Award finalist, 2014-2015

Westchester Fiction Award, 2014

Read On Wisconsin List selection, 2014-2015

Georgia Peach Book Award finalist 2014-15

Tennessee Volunteer State Book Award finalist, high school

2015-2016 Eliot Rosewater Indiana High School Book Award list.15-16 final list


Kirkus, starred

“A nuanced, heart-wrenching and ultimately empowering story about bullying…Medina takes what could be a didactic morality tale and spins it into something beautiful: a story rich in depth and heart…. Far more than just a problem novel, this book sheds light on a serious issue without ever losing sight of its craft.”

The Horn Book, starred

“Is it easier to give up and become a ‘nobody,’ or should she fight back? Teens will identify with Piddy’s struggle to decide.”

The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, starred

“What makes this story so compelling is that it’s about Piddy in her entirety, not just about bullying… Medina emphasizes Piddy’s acute sense of isolation without overplaying it, and she absolutely respects the totality of Piddy’s quandary, knowing that ham-fisted adult involvement will only make things worse.”

School Library Journal, starred

“The Latino cultural milieu adds a richness and texture that lifts this up above many problem novels. The plot points are dexterously intertwined, and the characters are distinct. A real bonus for those looking for a bullying book for older readers that is not simplistic.”

The Washington Post

“This gritty novel manages to transcend the usual earnest fictional treatment by delivering a protagonist who is more than a mere victim and an ending that rings complicatedly true… This unflinching novel, with its richly developed main character, deserves a place with two other nuanced bully books for teens: Rita Williams-Garcia’s ‘Jumped,’ a 2009 National Book Award finalist that explores the mindsets of bully, victim and bystander; and Adam Rex’s ‘Fat Vampire,’ in which a main character confronts her guilt as a cyberbully.”

Library Media Connection, Highly Commended
“This is a charming, straightforward, captivating story with universal teen themes that should find a home in all high school fiction collections.”

Common Sense Media
“Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass should be taught in schools, read by counselors and parents, and used as a tool to discuss the importance of finding your voice, telling the truth and asking for help.”

Scholarly research on using YAQUI DELGADO WANTS TO KICK YOUR ASS to address school bullying Texas Journal of Literary Education

Watch the trailer

Comments on: "Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass" (2)

  1. […] Visit author Meg Medina’s website here, and read some sample chapters and see the string of honors this book has received here. […]

  2. […] recently saw Meg Medina speak on her new book Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass. I was disappointed to hear that a school in my home state of Virginia cancelled her author visit […]

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