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.
“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)
The Orphan Train tears at your heart, while you are fascinated at the same time. Very believable well rounded characters, you feel sympathy for the terror it must have been to be in their shoes.
Vivian. Her resilience is remarkable. Her story is heartbreaking and endearing.
I'm not sure.
When Molly discovered Vivian's sister survived. When Vivian's first husband died. I was in tears for her and shocked by her decision to give their daughter up for adoption. Finding out her daughter had been searching for her. When her daughter arrived, (the description of her great granddaughter) sounding like she looked just like Vivian. I also loved her teacher and Mrs. Murphy for taking such good care of her.
I wish that it would have continued on a chapter or two more. I really wanted to hear what Vivian's daughters life was like. I wanted to know how Vivian felt about all the years she missed with her daughter (if she felt anything) I wanted to know if they bonded or were more like starters. If it impacted Molly to see their reunion.
My guess is they bonded and a part of Vivian could be at peace.
This book introduced me to a time in our history I knew little about. The story is complex, moving from the past to the present, but with lovely redemtion at the end. I highly recommend this book.
Yes. I only buy books that I will listen to more than once. Each time I listen, I am visiting old friends (the characters) and ideas. Each time, I find new things to think about. Re-reading a book is very much like sitting with friends hearing stories you have heard many times before, and that are cherished parts of sharing.
It was fun hearing about Niamh's first party night out with the girls - and the very unexpected twist in the story.
Loved and empathized with Molly, but my favorite has to be Vivian/Niamh. She was wonderfully voiced, creating vivid mental pictures.
Sometimes fiction is all about passing along the truth.
I had fairly extensive of the orphan trains in the U.S. and related programs in other parts of the world before reading this. For me, the story rang true in detail and circumstance. My heart aches for the "throw-away children" who have endured similar horrors all over the world.
Surviving childhood well.
It was heartwarming , but never sentimental .
Both the survivors , Dorothy and Molly .
I didn't want this book to end ...
mother of 3 girls and 2 step-children, grandmother of 9, and great-grandmother of 10. Retired RN and Paramedic. Love life.
I have not read the print version. I'm sure I would enjoy that as much.
The close comparison of two different generations and time periods,
I haven't read the book so I can't compare.
I wish I could have.
I very much liked this book and because I am in my 70s I could relate to both women,
Swept into the past with the performance accompanied by this audio book. Narrators really grabbed your attention and propelled you through history
The reader moves in and out of an "Irish" accent which is annoying to begin with. The characters have no depth, most are dug out of stereotypes. Conversations are also trite and stereotypical with no depth. Characters are also one-sided. Bad or good. Nothing in between. The main character seems to float through life with no emotion at all. Weird for the jarring experiences she has.
The story of the orphan trains is a worthwhile story. The book has no emotion at all for the story.
Hated the narrator and the useless (and not very good) accents.
Alone, struggle, triumphant..
A sense of sharing an adventure with real people.
Vivianne and all she went through.
I just loved the book. Not smaltzy or overly heart tugging. It was real, tight and had a beautiful resolution..
I think I would have preferred to read this one. There wasn't anything wrong with the narrator, she did a good job, it's just that the story itself seemed to lack something in audible version. Vivian Daly's story was rich and fascinating, but Molly lacked the same umph... She seemed almost and afterthought thrown in after the story of Niamh was born and raised. Had Molly and the characters of her day been developed as well as Niamh, (AKA Dorothy, Vivian) this could have been an amazing book instead of just a good book.
Pleasant. Pedestrian. Vanilla.
Not so much, maybe an "after-school special" or a Hallmark movie.
By the reviews I was expecting the likes of "The Kitchen House" or "Cutting for Stone", but this did not compare. Don't be dissuaded by my review, it is a pleasant, if not too predictable, story. I prefer an author who brings me into the belly of the characters.
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