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This is an Instaread Summary of ‘Orphan Train’ by Christina Baker Kline.
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Molly is a seventeen-year old girl living in the foster care system. Her current foster parents are Dina and Ralph. Molly is sure she will soon be kicked out and sent to the juvenile detention center. She was caught stealing an old copy of Jane Eyre from the public library. She learns she can do community service instead of going to the detention center. Dina wants to kick Molly out, but Ralph talks her into letting Molly stay.
Jack is Molly’s boyfriend. His mom, Terry, is a housekeeper for Vivian, the elderly woman who lives alone. Terry asks Vivian if Molly can help her clean her attic as part of a school project. She does not want Vivian to know that Molly actually needs community service hours.
During Molly’s interview, Vivian asks Molly about herself. Molly shares that she is a Penobscot Indian. Her father died, and her mother could not care of her, so she ended up in the foster care system.
Vivian tells Molly that she became an orphan at almost the exact same age as Molly. She then asks Molly when she would like to begin working in the attic…