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When the failed Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961 solidifies Castro's power in Cuba, twelve-year-old Cumba's family makes the difficult decision to send him to Florida alone. Faced with the prospect of living in another country by himself, he tries to remember the sound of his father's clarinet, the smell of his mother's lavender perfume. Life in the United States presents a whole new set of challenges. Lost in a sea of English speakers, Cumba has to navigate a new city, a new school, and new freedom all on his own. With each day, he feels more confident in his new surroundings, but he continues to wonder: Will his family ever be whole again? Or will they remain just out of reach, ninety miles across the sea?