May 9-18, 2014
Booklist compiled by Gere Library Staff
All summaries are publishers’ summaries
Will Sparrow’s Road
By: Karen Cushman
In 1599 England, twelve-year-old lying, thieving Will Sparrow runs away, meets many colorful characters on the road, and then reluctantly joins a traveling "oddities" exhibit, where he learns to see beyond appearances.
By: Charles Dickens and Don Freeman
j Dickens (Freeman ed.)
Completed in 1938 by the beloved artist of Corduroy, these superb illustrations were recently uncovered and are published for the first time in this lavish gift edition of one of Dickens's most popular novels. The memorable story of the orphan Oliver, the infamous Fagin, and his apprentice, the Artful Dodger, come vividly to life in this glorious volume.
A Little Princess
By: Frances Hodgson Burnett
A Little Princess, a 1904 children's novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, follows the story of Sara Crewe, a young girl sent to a boarding school in London where she is to be lavishly cared for as instructed by her doting, wealthy father, Captain Crewe. When her father dies, and she is left an orphan and a pauper, Sara becomes a servant at the school, and befriends a maid with whom she shares an attic room. Her imagination keeps her alive in her destitute life, and the rich stories she invents become as real to the reader as they do for Sara and the maid.
The Prince and the Pauper
By: Mark Twain
A simplified retelling of the Mark Twain classic in which young Edward VI of England and a poor boy who resembles him exchange places and each learns something about the other's very different station in life.
Train to Somewhere
By: Eve Bunting
In the late 1800s, Marianne travels westward on the Orphan Train in hopes of being placed with a caring family.
City of Orphans
In 1893 New York, thirteen-year-old Maks, a newsboy, teams up with Willa, a homeless girl, to clear his older sister, Emma, from charges that she stole from the brand new Waldorf Hotel, where she works. Includes historical notes.
By: Charles Dickens
David Copperfield is the story of a young man’s adventures on his journey from an unhappy and impoverished childhood to the discovery of his vocation as a successful novelist. Among the gloriously vivid cast of characters he encounters are his tyrannical stepfather, Mr. Murdstone; his formidable aunt, Betsey Trotwood; the eternally humble yet treacherous Uriah Heep; frivolous, enchanting Dora; and the magnificently impecunious Micawber, one of literature’s great comic creations.
The Solitary House: A Novel
By: Lynn Sheperd
Summoned to the offices of Victorian London's most powerful and dangerous solicitors, disgraced police officer turned independent detective Charles Maddox turns to his famous but aging investigator uncle to identify who has been sending threatening letters to a client.
A Frightened Man
By: Kenneth M. Cameron
London, 1900. When a terrified man shows up one evening and says he is being pursued by Jack the Ripper, Denton dismisses him as a lunatic. When the mutilated body of a teenaged prostitute is found, Denton decides to pursue the murderer.
Oliver Twist: or, the Parish Boy's Progress
By: Charles Dickens
Oliver Twist's famous cry of the heart — "Please, sir, I want some more" — has resounded with generations of readers of all ages. The author poured his own youthful experience of Victorian London's unspeakable squalor into this realistic depiction of a spirited young innocent's unwilling but inevitable recruitment into a scabrous gang of thieves. Masterminded by the loathsome Fagin, the underworld crew features some of Dickens's most memorable characters, including the vicious Bill Sikes, gentle Nancy, and the juvenile pickpocket known as the Artful Dodger.
The Book Thief
By: Markus Zusak
It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still. Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.
The Italian Boy
By: Sarah Wise
Before his murder in 1831, the "Italian boy" was one of thousands of orphans on the streets of London, moving among the livestock, hawkers, and con men, begging for pennies. When his body was sold to a London medical college, the suppliers were arrested for murder. Their high-profile trial would unveil London's furtive trade in human corpses carried out by body-snatchers-or "resurrection men"-who killed to satisfy the first rule of the cadaver market: the fresher the body, the higher the price.
The Orphan Trains: Placing Out in America
By: Marilyn Irvin Holt
From 1850 to 1930 America witnessed a unique emigration and resettlement of at least 200,000 children and several thousand adults, primarily from the East Coast to the West. This 'placing out', an attempt to find homes for the urban poor, was best known by the 'orphan trains' that carried the children. Holt carefully analyzes the system, initially instituted by the New York Children's Aid Society in 1853, tracking its imitators as well as the reasons for its creation and demise. She captures the children's perspective with the judicious use of oral histories, institutional records, and newspaper accounts.