If I had to choose a phrase to describe this book, I would choose "heartbreakingly beautiful". The story is so touching, with its ups and downs. I felt really emotionally connected to this book, despite the fact that it took me a bit of time to get into it. I loved the historical nature of the story, surrounding the orphan trains in the early part of the 20th century, and following Vivian's life through various parts of history. I also like the intertwining nature of both Molly and Vivian's stories. I found the dual timelines deftly executed, and the result is a story that is seamless, even though it covers so many decades.
I felt very attached to both Molly and Vivian as characters. I wanted to defend them, to comfort them, and to help them have a better life. I know that sounds silly, since they are merely characters in a book. However, the fact remains that these characters are modeled after true stories; people really do go through these kinds of things. As characters, both women were richly developed. I loved seeing such strong female characters, able to persevere through hardships and not allow themselves to become victims.
While the story deals with a few rough topics (abuse, drugs/alcohol, death), I think this would actually be a great book for mature young adults who are interested in history. I also feel like many adult fans of historical fiction and contemporary fiction will enjoy the book. It certainly had a tremendous impact on me.
I received a review copy courtesy of TLC Book Tours in exchange for my honest review. See the rest of the tour here.
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