THE ORPHAN OF ELLIS ISLAND by Elvira Woodruff

THE ORPHAN OF ELLIS ISLAND

Age Range: 9 - 12

KIRKUS REVIEW

 A colorless adventure through time as an orphan discovers something about his past. Fifth-grader Dominic is on a class trip to Ellis Island, thinking about how he has outgrown his unfashionable shoes and how different he is from his well-off classmates. A friendless orphan and frequently relocated foster child, Dominic has recently made an embarrassing mistake that makes him eager for the next upheaval. He longs for a family of his own; after he is accidentally locked into the park building, he makes contact with a long-dead relative and travels back to Italy in 1908. There he meets three orphan boys; desperately poor and hungry, two of them eventually make passage to the US on a ship, after illness kills the other. The boys are needy, but Dominic marvels at their sense of family, and it is eventually clear that they are his ancestors. Dominic returns, with precious knowledge of his roots, to a brighter present in the form of a new foster family. Woodruff includes details about the adventure that make it compelling, but the story is drily told and often heavy-handed. (map, glossary, bibliography) (Fiction. 9-12)

Pub Date: May 1st, 1997
ISBN: 0-590-48245-9
Page count: 181pp
Publisher: Scholastic
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15th, 1997




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