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A Place to Belong (Orphan Train Adventures) Mass Market Paperback – May 21, 1996

10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The Orphan Train Quartet follows the story of the six Kelly children, whose widowed mother has sent them west from New York City in 1856 because she realizes she cannot give them the life they deserve.

Danny and his younger sister Peg feel lucky to be adopted by kind Alfrid and Olga Swenson in St. Joseph, Missouri. But when Olga dies suddenly, the children fear they will lose their wonderful new family.

Danny comes up with an ingenious plan so they won't be separated, and which might even bring his real family back together. Then Danny runs into a phony doctor he knew from New York City, who recognizes him. Can Danny protect himself and those he loves from the evil doctor and still make his plan work? --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Joan Lowery Nixon was the author of more than 130 books for young readers and was the only four-time winner of the Edgar Allan Poe Best Young Adult Mystery Award. She received the award for The Kidnapping of Christina LattimoreThe SéanceThe Name of the Game Was Murder, and The Other Side of the Dark, which also won the California Young Reader Medal. Her historical fiction included the award-winning series The Orphan Train Adventures, Orphan Train Children, and Colonial Williamsburg: Young Americans.


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Series: Orphan Train Adventures (Book 4)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Laurel Leaf; Reissue edition (May 21, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0440226961
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440226963
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.4 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #129,357 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on July 26, 2000
Format: Library Binding
This is a great book. I wouldn't recommend reading this book before: A Family Apart, Caught in the Act, and In the Face of Danger. It is the last book a Quartet about the Kelly children. Unless you don't want to read the first three I suggest you read A Place to Belong last.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Nicole Rega on March 24, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
In A Place to Belong, the next story in the Orphan Train saga, Danny Kelly wishes his family were back together. Danny's a mix of Meg and Mike to some degree but lacks the rich characterization of his siblings in the previous three books. In his story, his younger sister Peg and he are adopted by Alfrid and Olga Swenson , not far from St. Joseph. Like in A Family Apart, there is a lot of abolitionist and anti-abolitionist talk as Abraham Lincoln is elected president. It's been awhile since I've read about the Civil War, but they way the characters talk about slavery and the election of 1860 comes across very anachronistically. There's no talk of state's rights, or republicanism, or even the slaves themselves, its just pro slavery or anti-slavery and everyone falls too neatly into either camp (oh, and there is also the hilarious scene when Danny meets John Wilkes Booth and just knows he's evil). I know it's a children's book but still both Mike's and Meg's books managed to make the world at least a little bit gray.

Olga dies with little fanfare and in then pages or less Alfrid is convinced by his ten year old foster son to marry Mrs. Kelly. Mrs. Kelly agrees and comes to St. Joseph to be with her children. From here the plot becomes so melodramatic (kidnapping, fire, love triangle) that I had to skim through until the end. Upon rereading this I remembered why I lost interest in the series, sans A Dangerous Promise. Basically, Mrs. Kelly and Alfrid decide not to get married and she goes on to marry the town blacksmith. Peg goes to live with them and Danny, stays with Alfrid for I suppose valid reasons (didn't want to lose another father) but still bugs me ten yeas after I first read this book. Mrs.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 18, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
It was souch a great book I finished it in one night! Although it was sad, It was very interesting. You really got to know the characters. I hade to get the three other books as soon as I could! One night I stayed up till one in the morning to finish one of the books!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By T. C. on April 12, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
My daughter read the first book in this series (A Family Apart: The Orphan Train Adventures) and was hooked! As an adult, I also enjoyed the book. We read the first book in a school "chat n chew" forum and the 5th grader boys and girls liked the book. The series has 6 books that follows the kids in one family as they leave inner city New York for the "wild west" in Missouri and Kansas. Wonderful series!

Though this is a fictional book (and series), the Orphan Train(s) was real. We live in the Midwest and know people whose grandparents came to the area on the orphan train!

Definitely recommend reading these books in order! This book is about Danny and Peg.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on September 13, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When the six Kelly children are split up Danny then sees a fake doctor he heard about in New York while at a medicine show out West. When he reveals the phony doctor's secret to everyone there, the doctor decides to hunt Danny down. It is a race to catch each other first before the other one catches you. A dramatic, heart-warming story filled with love, joy, and the importance of family.
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