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Mail-Order Kid: An Orphan Train Rider's Story Paperback – May 6, 2010
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About the Author
At twenty-one, I graduated from the University of Nebraska with a journalism degree. Then I read Jack Kerouac's "On the Road." Struck with the travel bug, I set out, saw Denver, New Orleans, San Diego, Portland, and New York. I lived in New York City for thirty years, where I taught writing at Pratt Institute, and earned a degree in creative writing from Brooklyn College.
Now I'm back in Nebraska, located in Omaha. I'm a retired professor doing what I love best: writing full time. When I'm not pounding away at my computer, I can usually be found reading, pulling weeds, talking to my cat, or hanging out with my partner, Jack Loscutoff, also a writer. I have become an award winning and internationally published writer of poetry and prose who has written six books, six hundred poems, and hundreds of articles and stories. My awards include a national Pushcart Prize for my poem called "Pricksong," a Master Alumnus award for distinction in writing from the University of Nebraska, and the National Orphan Train Complex's Special President's Award for my biography, Mail-Order Kid. My "naughty" book, Marcella, is the first novel written in English that uses autoeroticism as its main theme. My writing has appeared in Australia, Canada, Denmark, England, India, and Japan.
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Top Customer Reviews
Ultimately, to the pleasure of the reader, Teresa grows up to become an educated and admirable mother, grandmother and public servant. She outlives three husbands. And throughout her travails, Teresa's integrity and ambition triumph. Yet not surprisingly, Teresa yearns for her "real" family, to know her mother, to discover more of her personal history, her own background. It is a surprise to Teresa, raised by nuns as a Catholic in a New York orphanage, then as a "Volga German," to discover almost by accident that her real mother is Jewish. Indeed, Teresa does have living family, and she is able to partially recover her original identity and her own name.Read more ›
Marilyn Coffey brings her delightful subject to life. She has gotten into the skin of Teresa Martin, and no subject could want for a better biographer. Flawlessly written, this book is a book that you will want to read in one sitting, and then the story will stay with you. Book clubs will particularly enjoy reading it, and the author has supplied a guide to discussion topics in her introduction.
So, you see, when she lumped them all together I was very disappointed in her careless opinion. Further, most Germans take pride in cleanliness.
This book covers the story of one woman named Theresa from her young childhood in the Foundling Home in New York, to her transport from New York to Kansas at the tender age of three. The good news is she lived a good long life, but the poignancy of her childhood years until young adulthood went straight to my heart. It's a portrait of resiliency, spirit and a need to survive all the insults sent Theresa's way.Her name changes alone were significant:(Jess)Theresa Feit,Bieker,Binder and finally Martin. The journey to meeting with the Orphan Train Society and family,too -remarkable.
Marilyn Coffey did an excellent job researching this story and filling in the gaps to create insight into this woman's life that offered the reader the whole picture - no sob story by any stretch. There was tragedy but Theresa's drive to persevere and surface head held high,was the message that came through again and again.
Theresa, in rare instances, did feel sorry for herself and the poor luck that led to her station in life, but she didn't grieve for long. She triumphed over her tough lot with each new challenge. I couldn't help but like this sharp, strong woman and enjoyed reading the her biography as written by Marilyn Coffey.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Reviews by Teri
I’m not a writer, but I am a reader. Reading books is part of who I am and what I believe. I truly believe that anyone who can read should read everyday. Read more
I enjoyed the writing style and the story of a young determined girl to over come the struggles of her abusive childhood.Published 7 months ago by nursejodie
Did not care for the writing the story itself was very interestingPublished 9 months ago by susan richardson
This book is written about my husband's grandmother. Very interesting reading, although his family does not agree with the portrayal of his grandfather.Published 12 months ago by Lori R
Marilyn Coffey does a fine job of telling the true story of Teresa Martin who, as a 3-year old, was taken from an orphanage in NYC and boarded on a train west to Kansas where she... Read morePublished 14 months ago by Sue Bee
Good story. It is sad to hear the children were afraid to tell of their abuse sooner.Published 14 months ago by Janice Olson