COUSINS IN THE CASTLE by Barbara Brooks Wallace


Age Range: 8 - 12
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 An orphan is abandoned, robbed, and kidnapped in a Victorian melodrama from Wallace (The Twin in the Tavern, 1993, etc.), a specialist in the genre. When motherless Amelia's father is reportedly killed while abroad, she is forced to leave London to sail to America with her forbidding Aunt Charlotte. Upon arriving in New York, Amelia is beset by troubles and seeks help from the only person she knows, Primrose, a child singer she met on the ship. This is good entertainment, with all of melodrama's blandishments: an innocent orphan facing a fate worse than death, dastardly villains, conniving relatives, family fortunes--it's all here. So are the weaknesses of the genre: absurd coincidences, too-ample exposition at the climax, terribly tidy conclusions. Those who know what to expect will find this a lightweight but exciting page-turner, a good read for a rainy afternoon, that ultimately satisfies. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: April 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-689-80637-X
Page count: 152pp
Publisher: Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 1996


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