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Bluebird

Bluebird

Orphan Train: A Novel

Orphan Train - Christina Baker Kline Molly, a 17 year old Penobscot Indian, has been shuttled from foster home to foster home. She dresses in the “goth” style because she’s found it’s “preferable to be tough and weird rather than vulnerable and pathetic.” She’s really just a misunderstood normal, sweet girl. She gets caught stealing the “most dog-eared” copy of Jane Eyre from the public library and is assigned 50 hours community service—helping a 91 year old widow clean out her attic. By this point the story is sounding too corny for me. However, what follows is a fascinating and uplifting story. Vivian (aka Niamh and Dorothy) is an Irish immigrant, orphaned at age 9 and sent to Minnesota in 1929 on one of the last Orphan Trains. As Vivian shares her story, she and Molly form a tight bond as they discover the similarities in their experiences. This is one of the best “dual timeline” books I’ve read—the blending of the two stories is beautifully done.