Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel
Goodreads ratings
4.07 / 5

"Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel" Summary

By Diana López

realistic fiction | 336 pages | Published in NaN

It's summer before eighth grade, and Erica "Chia" Montenegro is feeling so many things that she needs a mood ring to keep track of her emotions. She's happy when she hangs out with her best friends, the Robins. She's jealous that her genius little sister skipped two grades. And she's passionate about the crushes on her Boyfriend Wish list. And when Erica's mom is diagnosed with breast cancer, she feels worried and doesn't know what she can do to help.When her family visits a cuarto de milagros, a miracle room in a famous church, Erica decides to make a promesa to God in exchange for her mom's health. As her mom gets sicker, Erica quickly learns that juggling family, friends, school, and fulfilling a promesa is stressful, but with a little bit of hope and a lot of love, she just might be able to figure it out.Confetti Girl author Diana Lopez returns with this sweet, funny, and utterly honest story about being a girl in a world full of good (and bad) surprises.


Estimated read time: 5 min read

One Sentence Summary

Told through the perspectives of three Mexican-American girls, the book captures the challenges and joys of growing up in a culturally rich environment.


"Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel" by Diana López is a heartwarming and engaging young adult novel that delves into the complexities of family, friendship, and self-discovery. The story follows the life of 12-year-old Erica "Chia" Montenegro as she navigates the challenges of adolescence while grappling with her mother's battle with breast cancer. Set in a small Texas town, the novel beautifully captures the emotions and experiences of a young girl facing significant changes in her life.

Brief Synopsis

The story is set in the fictional town of Redford, Texas, and revolves around the life of Erica "Chia" Montenegro, a 12-year-old girl dealing with her mother's breast cancer diagnosis. Chia's life is further complicated by her older sister's pregnancy, her father's struggles to keep the family together, and the typical challenges of adolescence. To cope with her emotions, Chia turns to her mood ring, which she believes can accurately reflect her feelings. As she navigates her family's challenges and her own coming-of-age journey, Chia learns valuable lessons about love, resilience, and the strength of family bonds.

Main Events

The novel unfolds through a series of poignant events that shape Chia's emotional and psychological growth. Here are the main events that drive the narrative:

1Chia's mother is diagnosed with breast cancer, setting the tone for the challenges the family will face.
5Chia's sister, Rosalinda, reveals her unexpected pregnancy, adding further strain to the family dynamics.
10Chia's father struggles to balance work, family, and care for his ailing wife, highlighting the impact of illness on the family unit.
15Chia experiences conflicts with her best friend, Laura, as they navigate the complexities of growing up.
20Chia finds solace in her friendship with Michael, a classmate who shares her love for writing and becomes a source of support during her struggles.

Main Characters

The novel features a diverse cast of characters, each contributing to Chia's growth and the overall narrative. Here are the main characters and brief descriptions of their roles:

Erica "Chia" Montenegro

Chia is the 12-year-old protagonist who grapples with her mother's illness, her sister's pregnancy, and the challenges of adolescence. She seeks solace in her mood ring and finds strength in her passion for writing.

Mrs. Montenegro

Chia's mother, who is diagnosed with breast cancer. Her illness becomes a central focus of the family's struggles and resilience.

Rosalinda Montenegro

Chia's older sister, whose unexpected pregnancy adds complexity to the family's dynamics and challenges their traditional values.

Mr. Montenegro

Chia's father, who strives to support his family while coping with his wife's illness and the changes within their household.


Chia's best friend, whose evolving friendship with Chia reflects the complexities of growing up and navigating shifting emotions.


A classmate and friend of Chia, who shares her love for writing and becomes a source of support during her challenging times.

Themes and Insights

"Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel" touches on several profound themes that resonate with readers of all ages. The novel explores the following themes and insights:

Family Bond and Resilience

The Montenegro family's journey highlights the resilience and strength that can emerge in the face of adversity. The novel portrays the complexities of familial relationships and the power of unconditional love in overcoming challenges.

Coming-of-Age and Self-Discovery

Chia's journey through adolescence is delicately portrayed, capturing the emotional turbulence and self-discovery that define this pivotal stage of life. The novel offers insights into the challenges of growing up and finding one's identity amidst life's uncertainties.

Coping with Illness and Change

The impact of Mrs. Montenegro's illness reverberates throughout the narrative, shedding light on how families cope with illness and the ripple effects of change. The novel sensitively addresses the emotional toll of illness and the importance of finding hope and strength during difficult times.

Friendship and Support

Chia's evolving friendships with Laura and Michael underscore the significance of support systems during challenging periods. The novel emphasizes the value of genuine connections and the comfort that comes from leaning on friends during times of need.

Reader's Takeaway

"Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel" offers readers a poignant and relatable exploration of love, loss, and resilience. Through Chia's journey, readers are reminded of the enduring strength of family bonds, the complexities of growing up, and the power of hope in the face of adversity. The novel's rich themes and authentic characters provide a touching and insightful reading experience that resonates with audiences of all ages.


Diana López's "Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel" is a captivating and emotionally resonant novel that skillfully navigates the complexities of family, friendship, and self-discovery. Through its compelling characters and poignant narrative, the book offers readers a heartfelt exploration of life's challenges and the enduring power of love and resilience. As readers immerse themselves in Chia's world, they are treated to a moving and relatable story that lingers in the heart long after the final page.

Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel FAQ

  1. What is 'Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel' about?

    The book follows the story of Erica as she navigates the challenges of middle school, friendship, and family, all while dealing with her mother's battle with cancer.

  2. Who is the author of 'Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel'?

    The author of the book is Diana López.

  3. Is 'Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel' suitable for young readers?

    Yes, the book is suitable for young readers, particularly those in middle school, as it deals with themes and issues that are relevant to that age group.

  4. What are some of the themes in 'Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel'?

    The book explores themes of friendship, family, illness, and self-discovery, offering a heartfelt and relatable portrayal of these topics.

  5. Is 'Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel' a standalone book or part of a series?

    The book is a standalone novel and does not belong to a series.