Travel back in time with Christina Baker Kline’s touching novel, Orphan Train. A beautifully crafted story, Orphan Train tells the tale of two intriguing women, Vivian and Molly. While Molly’s story occurs in the present-day, Vivian’s journey spans several decades and locations. In most dual timeline books, one storyline is more favorable than the other, yet in Orphan Train, each page is enjoyable. Kline’s stirring, well-developed plot made it easy to develop strong emotional ties to the characters and their plight. I found it very difficult to not skip ahead and check to see how things turn out! Kline’s impressive historical research really peaked my interest about actual orphan trains and their important place in American history. With an author Q & A and reading group guide, Orphan Train is not only an entertaining and informative read, but would make a fantastic book club choice.
Profanity/Language: 4 religious exclamations, 12 mild obscenities, 1 religious profanity, 2 derogatory names, 15 scatological words, 6 anatomical terms, 8 f-word derivatives
Violence/Gore: Several secondhand reports of violence involving child abuse, warfare and revolution; two brief scenes of violence; a non-detailed scene of violent death; a brief scene of attempted rape of a minor.
Sex/Nudity: Several incidents of kissing; a few reported incidents of sexual activity; a few incidents of touching areas normally covered by a bathing suit; a brief scene of attempted rape of a minor.
Mature Subject Matter:
Death of family members, drinking by minors, attempted rape of a minor, incarceration of a family member, abandonment and neglect, brief mentions of suicide, drunk driving, speakeasies, and drug abuse.
Alcohol / Drug Use:
Characters drink and smoke frequently; a minor gets drunk; in an extended scene, characters drink and converse in a bar; drunk driving; drug abuse.