My rating: 5 of 5 stars
In the back of the book, it lists how Rory's Promise was based on real kidnappings, making this one of the creepiest children's books ever.
Thank you, NetGalley and Boyds Mill Press, for this free book to review!
Twelve-year-old orphan Rory Fitzpatrick lives with her younger sister Violet at New York City's Foundling Hospital in the early 1900s. But when Rory discovers that Violet will be sent to the Arizona Territory to be adopted, her world is shattered. Although too old to be adopted herself, Rory--brave and smart--is determined to stay with her sister, even if it means hiding out on a train traveling west. When Rory and Violet arrive in Arizona, everything that could go wrong does go wrong. Will Rory give up? This uplifting novel about the power of faith and the true meaning of family launches the Hidden Histories series, spotlighting little-known tales from America's past, and the children behind those stories. Includes authors' note and further resources.While Rory is fictional, Violet and the kidnappings are not. I had no idea the women in the wild west were so desperate for children. Thus, it leads to one exciting and fast paced book.
I really love Rory, despite how overprotective she was. Of course you wouldn't want your only sister to be sent out west without you, but Violet can't even eat dinner by herself? She can't sleep in her own bed? That's a little extreme. Usually I hate feisty young girls in historical novels ("Oh! I'm such a tomboy! Look, I can ride a horse!") but I actually liked Rory here. She grew so much over the course of the novel.
Another thing I liked is how accurate the nuns were. Usually in literature they're portrayed as mean and loveless. Maybe some are, but that's rarely the case. In Rory's Promise, they felt like real people (maybe because Sister Anna WAS a real person). They're flawed, but they want what's best for the children.
Would I read other books by these authors? Absolutely. The historical facts are woven in without being condescending.
Violence: A or B
Adult Content: A
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