We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
 >   > 
Orphan Train: A Novel | [Christina Baker Kline]

Orphan Train: A Novel

Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to "aging out" out of the foster care system. A community-service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse.... As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance.
Regular Price:$19.95
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

Orphan Train is a gripping story of friendship and second chances from Christina Baker Kline, author of Bird in Hand and The Way Life Should Be.

Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to "aging out" out of the foster care system. A community-service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse....

As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance. Molly discovers that she has the power to help Vivian find answers to mysteries that have haunted her for her entire life - answers that will ultimately free them both.

Rich in detail and epic in scope, Orphan Train is a powerful novel of upheaval and resilience, of unexpected friendship, and of the secrets we carry that keep us from finding out who we are.

©2013 Christina Baker Kline (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“The narrator of Orphan Train, Jessica Almasy, does an incredible read. Listening to Almasy’s rendition of this book - so vivid and emotional - was as much fun as getting swept away by an Oscar-winning movie.” (Parents.com)

"Absorbing...a heartfelt page-turner about two women finding a sense of home.... Kline lets us live the characters’ experiences vividly through their skin.... The growth from instinct to conscious understanding to partnership between the two is the foundation for a moving tale." (Publishers Weekly)

“Kline's vibrant, sophisticated language comes alive with the sparkling talents of narrators Jessica Almasy and Suzanne Toren. Their finely paced, enthusiastic portrayals of the charming main characters quickly capture the listener.” (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (5308 )
5 star
 (2561)
4 star
 (1940)
3 star
 (630)
2 star
 (110)
1 star
 (67)
Overall
4.3 (4722 )
5 star
 (2416)
4 star
 (1612)
3 star
 (520)
2 star
 (119)
1 star
 (55)
Story
4.3 (4708 )
5 star
 (2431)
4 star
 (1634)
3 star
 (464)
2 star
 (106)
1 star
 (73)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Tonya Malta, ID, United States 04-14-14
    Tonya Malta, ID, United States 04-14-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "keeps you interested"
    Would you listen to Orphan Train again? Why?

    I would listen again really enjoyed the story and felt for the lonliness of the children in this story


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Orphan Train?

    There were many but I liked the parrell of the two charactersl.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nina SANTA FE, NM, United States 04-12-14
    Nina SANTA FE, NM, United States 04-12-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    40
    20
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Should be re-titled "Cliche Train""

    SLIGHT SPOILERS, but nothing a blind man couldn't see coming....

    If I sat down and listed the cliches and stereotypes that the author uses, I might be here all day, but if you like books with:

    -bitter teens in foster care who have been failed by the system
    -drunken Native Americans and Irishmen
    -foster parents who care only about the money they get for fostering
    -pervy, gross adoptive dads
    -kindly minorities
    -wicked step/adoptive mothers
    -predictable reunions
    -wealthy old white women with secrets
    -latina housekeepers

    Then this is the story for you! Honestly, it was terrible. Was everyone else reading another book? I have read other fiction that had the orphan trains as a central detail and found them interesting and entertaining. This book was neither. It feels like a rambling, painful story written by a 9th grader who thinks that all their ideas are SO original and that no other teen on earth feels like they do. The narration doesn't help the unlikable "present day" character sound anything more than whiny and ungrateful and angry at the world.

    I gagged my way through it, but do yourself a favor and skip this one.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    christine branson 04-11-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    0
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Ride the Train!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Orphan Train to be better than the print version?

    I thought the performance was wonderful! My preference with this book would be audio.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Orphan Train?

    I giggled out loud when Vivian interviewed Molly and asked her how she does her hair and what her natural color is. When Molly answers, "brown"; Vivian states her natural color is "red" (She is now 90 years old and her hair is grey) Also, it amazed me how people could TAKE the only thing these children had left - their name, and then not give the child their surname. These are just a few - the entire book is memorable. Perhaps the most memorable though is when Vivian has her baby. I will not spoil it - but the cladaugh and circle of life comes into play here for a twist that was unexpected.


    Which character – as performed by Jessica Almasy and Suzanne Toren – was your favorite?

    If I have to choose a favorite, it would be Young Neave and Vivian.


    If you could rename Orphan Train, what would you call it?

    It is titled perfectly


    Any additional comments?

    Loved this book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Danni Colorado 04-10-14
    Danni Colorado 04-10-14 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    57
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Listeners be forewarned..."
    Would you try another book from Christina Baker Kline and/or Jessica Almasy and Suzanne Toren ?

    I would definitely READ another book by Kline. I would not likely ever listen to a book narrated by Almasy or Toren again. As another reviewer wrote, it is difficult to tell whose voice is narrating, but both are very high-pitched and I found it extremely grating.


    Would you recommend Orphan Train to your friends? Why or why not?

    I would recommend the book, as I think it has a moving story and well-developed characters. I think the narration ruined this novel for me, which is unfortunate.


    How could the performance have been better?

    I believe an audiobook can either make you love a book even more (Colin Firth's narration of The End of the Affair by Graham Greene) or take away from the essence of the novel. Although the characters in this book were portrayed as young females, the choice of narrators was horrible. They did not mesh well at all, and the net effect was to detract from the quality of the book.


    Any additional comments?

    I do not normally take the time to write a review...usually, I use the rating system and go on my way. This book, however, with all its high ratings, forced me to step out of the box and write something. I read a number of mostly glowing reviews before buying this title, and as it's a book club selection for the group I'm in I went with it. I should have paid closer attention to the reviews that focused on the "chipmunk" quality of the narrators. Even listening to a sample doesn't prepare you for eight hours of it. If you have the time, I strongly recommend reading this book instead of listening to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jenn HIGHLANDS RANCH, CO, United States 04-06-14
    Jenn HIGHLANDS RANCH, CO, United States 04-06-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Read it."
    What about Jessica Almasy and Suzanne Toren ’s performance did you like?

    Suzanne Toren was flawless in her narration. It was absolutely beautiful. Jessica Almasy, however, would emphasize weird words in the sentences. It was as though she hadn't read the book before. Or hadn't read the sentence in her mind before saying it aloud. For example, one sentence read "They piled ONE... upon another in a stack" and "she had not KNOWN... the markings would be ETCHED so deep." It's weird. Her voice was fine.... but the emphasis thing would have driven me crazy if there weren't a break in narrators every other chapter.


    Any additional comments?

    This book made me FEEL. I got so wrapped up in the characters, and felt a kindred spirit with them. I don't usually identify so much with a book on that level. It was a beautiful and moving story. And I feel like it is an IMPORTANT story, a forgotten page in our history. And it is very relevant today. It made me think about out foster care system, and it really made me care.I do wish that someone would have mentioned in a review that there is one chapter in the book where a child is molested. It made me physically ill. It was important to the story, but be prepared for that. One reviewer said this story can be listened to by the whole family, which is wholly inaccurate. There is definitely some language and the chapter with sexual abuse.That being said, this book is still uplifting. It offers a message of hope, and it is absolutely worth the read. I went online to research what the facts were after reading this book, and, as one other reviewer put it, it seems more historical than fiction. I'm surprised that this piece of history has fallen through the cracks.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    saborbuddy texas 04-03-14
    saborbuddy texas 04-03-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "America during WW II and the children within"
    What did you love best about Orphan Train?

    How well the author was able to tell a believable story during WW II I was alway hoping that there would be a happy ending but also knowing that there might not be one


    What other book might you compare Orphan Train to and why?

    The Book Thief. Both authors are able to take a time period and create "fiction" characters where you belive that they are true stories


    Have you listened to any of Jessica Almasy and Suzanne Toren ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    This book made me want to learn more about what happened to these children during these times


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie Durham, CA, United States 03-31-14
    Debbie Durham, CA, United States 03-31-14 Member Since 2009
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enjoyed very much."

    I enjoyed the author's use of points of view and moving from past to present. The young girl was believable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lisa UNION CITY, CA, United States 03-30-14
    Lisa UNION CITY, CA, United States 03-30-14 Member Since 2010
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Absolutely fabulous book!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Orphan Train to be better than the print version?

    The story of Vivian and Molly and how their lives ultimately intersect is beautifully written with vivid language. The author pieced together such a credible tale that I found myself wanting to jump into traffic just so I could resume reading during my commute. The narrators, likewise, do an amazing job of the numerous characters' voices in the story. For such a brief story, ~8 hours, is certainly is one that will remain with me always.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    YES! I couldn't get enough of this story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    regina clearwater, FL, United States 03-30-14
    regina clearwater, FL, United States 03-30-14 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing Story!!!"
    What made the experience of listening to Orphan Train the most enjoyable?

    This book is wonderful. It is rich history of something I never knew existed. The characters are vivid and addicting. This is a story that will have you experiencing a range of emotions with the characters as you travel through the life of a 91 year old woman and all she has to offer. I'm so sad that I have finished the book!!


    What did you like best about this story?

    The history and the journey of the characters...


    What does Jessica Almasy and Suzanne Toren bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    They bring a closeness and a breath of life to the characters that I couldn't add on my own.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The most dramatic moment for me was the moment Vivian gave up the baby.. The desperation she felt!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ilene KATY, TX, United States 03-28-14
    Ilene KATY, TX, United States 03-28-14 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Well written"
    What made the experience of listening to Orphan Train the most enjoyable?

    The movie is good but as the book is better, much better. The details that the moive doesn't have time to go into are so enjoyable to the full feeling of the times and the people who lived those stories. I enjoyed every minute of the book and highly recommend it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 181-190 of 272 results PREVIOUS118192028NEXT
Sort by:
  • Amelia
    United Kingdom
    3/27/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Lovely easy read"

    I chose the book as it was on the New York bestseller list. I really enjoyed the way the story developed and especially Niamh/Vivienne's story. I did not particularly enjoy the 2011 part with Molly in it. I had no real interest in her but could see it was part of the setup of the story. It was really hard to read how orphan children were treated and how their lives were so disrupted or aided depending on who took them in. It makes you realise how lucky life is not to have had such experiences in it. I thought the narrative was very good and aided delivery of the story. I would highly recommend it.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-1 of 1 results

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.