Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 3 - 5n/a4.352760

When falling crop prices threaten his family with starvation, fifteen–year–old Victor Flores heads north in a desperate attempt to "cross the wire" from Mexico into the United States so he can find work and send money home. But with no "coyote money" to pay the smugglers who sneak illegal workers across the border, Victor must struggle to survive as he jumps trains, stows away on trucks, and hikes grueling miles through the Arizona desert.

Victor's journey is fraught with danger, as he faces freezing cold, scorching heat, hunger, and dead ends. It's a gauntlet run by millions attempting to cross the border. Through Victor's often desperate struggle, Will Hobbs brings to life one of the great human dramas of our time.

Hardcover, 224 pages
Published on April 4, 2006 by HarperCollins
ISBN-10: 0060741384
ISBN-13: 9780060741389
10 Book Reviews
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  • fal12
    fal12Friday, September 25, 2020 at 9:21 am44 stars
    Its a realy good story about a kid who comes into armica and he wants to get a job to help his family.
    • johndallSaturday, May 18, 2019 at 7:50 am
      this should be retitled “the simile book” for the absurd number of them in will hobbs’ ‘crossing the wire’. i’ve read this with my class in the previous weeks, and not only is the writing horrendous, but they butcher what easily could have been an incredibly fine story. teachers — find another book about the same topic with better writing, or have your class read some *real* literature, like dostoevsky or tolstoy.
      • Miley Q.Thursday, December 13, 2018 at 2:08 pm
        I read this book with my class, just like what mels was talking about, I thought it was a good book but I didn't quite get it. -Miley Quattlebaum
        • ella51
          ella51Thursday, April 27, 2017 at 8:00 am55 stars
          I loved this book it tells a good story while Dominic meets new people and sees his best friend again, and goes on an adventure. This is a great book for anyone on loves adventures.
          • amelix
            amelixMonday, November 2, 2015 at 10:49 am
            I think the book was a great book because it showed people to not be so ungrateful for what they have. It also shows what goes on in other parts of the world, such as Mexico, where it is very hard to make money. Overall, I think middle to high school kids would enjoy reading this and I would definitely recommend it to teachers to read to their students.
            • mels
              melsWednesday, September 30, 2015 at 1:14 pm33 stars
              The book I read was Crossing The Wire by Will Hobbs. This book is about a boy named Victor Who's best friend since childhood, Rico goes off to America illegally. Later on Victor finds himself in the same situation to help out his family. I personally loved this book because it was unique and there is no book made like this one. Another reason I liked this book is because is because it kept getting interesting it didn't get boring in any part of the book. This book is realistic fiction because talked about a topic not many people care for or even think about even though this is a problem. Realistic Fiction means that this is possible to happen and this book talks about real struggles some families have not only people in Mexico but everywhere. I feel that most kids from 5th grade to high school should read this book. I feel like most kids would like this book but some might not understand it.
              • elmo3000
                elmo3000Tuesday, September 29, 2015 at 7:33 pm44 stars
                The book I read was Crossing the Wire, by:Will Hobbs. This book is about a boy from Mexico named Victor Flores. He makes a living for his family from selling corn at a farm after his father died. His friend Rico crosses the border to America to start a new life. Victor asks his mom if he may go to "el Norte" to earn money. His mother agrees but it's not as easy as he thinks. Victor goes through many problems and hardships along the way. He meets three people who lead him to America. He goes through sewers, tricksters, border patrol, jail, gunfights, snake bites, desert heat and much more. He fails many times but finally crosses the border. My opinion of this book is great. I really enjoyed this book because the story moves right along. It's has great suspense and surprises. I also liked it because of the dialogue and Will Hobbs makes each person difference not only with accent but with personality and emotion. He developed the characters very well. This books genre is realistic fiction for many reasons. First of all these events can happen to anyone it has no supernatural or fantasy characters. Also it is describing an real issue that today is very common about crossing the border. The setting is realistic it's not in a whole different world. I think a person who would like this book would be a person who likes current events and lots of different characters. This book is based on many events that are very high debated today. Also this book has a lot of different people from Americans to police and Mexicans. You get to know a lot of new people. Victor has a lot of man v. self conflict in this book. He has a lot of thoughts because of the mistakes he's made he needs to think any decision through which can require a lot of debating with himself. Also, another type of conflict is man v. man. Since Victor has to fight with police officers, friends, drivers and family. He has a lot of conflicts person to person with people he meets.
                • jack37
                  jack37Tuesday, September 29, 2015 at 1:58 pm44 stars
                  The book that I recently read was called Crossing the wire by Will Hobbs. The book is about a boy named Victor Flores who has to go to the United States and make money for his family because his family farm is not doing so good. Also in the book Victor has a friend name Rico who moved to America and Victor plans on living with him. I liked the book, because when I read it I felt like I was in the book. Also I liked the details that the author put in. This genre is realistic fiction, because in the book it's about immigrants going to the United States, and things like that actually happen in Mexico and America. Also in the book it said that the price of corn in Mexico is dropping, and that is also happening in real life. So everything in the book could actually happen. Any audience could read this book. It is great for boys and girls because it action packed and drama filled. An internal conflict was man vs self and it happened when Victor had to tell Rico's parents that he left for America. That was man vs self because Victor kept changing his mind on whether or not to tell Rico's parents.
                  • whopper12
                    whopper12Monday, September 28, 2015 at 5:57 pm44 stars
                    The book I read was "Crossing The Wire", by Will Hobbs. My book is about a boy named Victor who needs to cross the U.S. Border to feed his family. He faces many challenges like starvation, natural weather, and border control. He just barely makes it to the United States, where he later finds his friend Rico. I loved this book because this is how most of the illegals in our country need to come here. I also liked this book because of the action and suspense; you just can't stop reading it. This book is realistic fiction because a lot of Hispanics do cross the border and come into our country seeking a better life. I think anyone would like this book because it shows how lots of people illegally come into this country and why they do it. It also informed me how much of a problem we have with this country's border protection and why these people want to come here so badly. The internal conflict Victor had was when he had many opportunities to get on a train or cross the border but he was hesitant so he mentally couldn't come to do it. He had external conflicts as well with sleeping in the woods and almost freezing to death and almost being caught by border control when he almost tripped running away from them.
                    • teacher_2642
                      Benjamin La FramboiseTuesday, December 27, 2011 at 7:46 am
                      We're reading this book this school year. Each cardmarking, one class will read the book at home, and answer questions about it on I chose this book for several reasons: 1) it's related to current events that are happening here in the United States and Mexico; 2) it's an exciting survival story, and survival stories are a part of the sixth-grade language arts curriculum; and 3) it's a good book!