TWIST OF GOLD by Michael Morpurgo


Age Range: 10 - 12
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 Sean O'Brien and his sister Annie leave their dying mother in famine-and plague-stricken County Cork to head for America. As protection, they carry their mother's prayers, the cloak of a kindly British dragoon, and a gold torc (necklace) that's been in the family for ``1000'' years. Before reaching their father in California, Sean and Annie meet a sampling of late 19th-century America's best and worst: two good-hearted Bostonians (twin sisters); a black man, born free, and his bossy wife; an evil bounty hunter; a charming riverboat captain, a former Civil War colonel; mutinous pioneers; a gold prospector who is a fellow Irishman. The children lie at death's door a little too often and are aided by far too many miracles, while one particular bad guy crops up with remarkable frequency, given the vast landscape. Still, what the story lacks in credibility it makes up for in suspense; even if it is unbelievable that the children find their mother alive and well in California, it's also the kind of happy surprise that will keep readers avidly turning the pages. (Fiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: March 1st, 1993
ISBN: 0-670-84851-4
Page count: 246pp
Publisher: Viking
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 1993


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