Thursday, July 26, 2018

Orphan Train Girl

There is always some hot book out that I never manage to get around to reading. For awhile, it was Christina Baker Kline's Orphan Train, which was a bestseller for several years. I had seen it around but mentally put it in the pile of books I didn't have time to read. Until I saw the young readers' edition and realized I could do two things at once--become a late follower to a literary trend and read a book that I could possibly recommend to my middle school students. Win win.

And recommend it, I will. I flew through Orphan Train Girl. It alternates between the story of Molly-- an orphan who has to help an elderly woman, Vivian, as part of community service for stealing a book-- and Niamh, an Irish immigrant in the 1920s who is sent across the US on a train, hoping for adoption. I knew from the start that Vivian and Niamh were the same person, so I wonder when young readers will figure it out. Even if they figure it out immediately, they will enjoy the story and be rooting for things to work out for both girls.

I love that this is a light introduction to historical fiction. Orphan trains did exist and there is information at the back of the book, but kids who aren't fans of history will enjoy the plot, as well. It could spark an interest in readers and lead them to check out more weighty historical fiction. I love a good gateway book. Even though we are on summer vacation, I'm texting a few parents that have children who would love this book. I can't wait until the fall to share it.

No comments:

Post a Comment

What say you?