Gary Soto's books are popular with several of my reluctant readers. Initially they grab them because his books are just about the length required by their language arts teachers. But the key is that after reading one, they come back for more. If you're just trying to introduce a reluctant reader to his books, try Baseball in April, Petty Crimes, or another short story collection. I often head to the short story section if a student has been told to get a book--any book--to read in class. Soto's stories have convinced many readers to explore one of his novels. These realistic stories and novels, mainly about Mexican Americans teenagers in Central California, have grabbed many of my reluctant readers.