Thursday, July 4, 2013
Train to Somewhere
Author: Eve Bunting
Illustrator: Ronald Himler
Publication Year: 1996
Location: Personal Collection
Awards: Kirkus & Publisher's Weekly starred reviews, Parent's Choice, ALA Booklist Editors' Choice, ALA Notable, Jefferson Cup Award Honor
Summary: In the late 1800s, orphans were sent on trains to find families to adopt them. This is the story of the fictional orphan Marianne who believes that her mother will be at one of the stops to fin her. She carries with her a feather that she took out of her mother's hat. At each stop, the younger, more attractive children are taken until at the final stop Marianne is the last child left. An older couple is there who offer her a toy train with the words "Sometimes what you get turns out to be better than what you wanted in the first place." Marianne "crumbles" and offers them the feather as she goes off to become their daughter.
Classroom Ideas: A perfect way for children to understand the plight of the children on the Orphan trains in the 1800s. This book has a wonderful theme and Marianne is a strong character. You can't help hoping that she ends up with a perfectly happy life.