I got my act together and I am linking up once again Heather @ Blonde...Undercover Blonde, for Book Club.
This week I read 2 books. The first was Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline:
Here is the synopsis from Goodreads.com -
"Nearly eighteen, Molly Ayer knows she has one last chance. Just months from "aging out" of the child welfare system, and close to being kicked out of her foster home, a community service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping her out of juvie and worse.
Vivian Daly has lived a quiet life on the coast of Maine. But in her attic, hidden in trunks, are vestiges of a turbulent past. As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly discovers that she and Vivian aren't as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance.
The closer Molly grows to Vivian, the more she discovers parallels to her own life. A Penobscot Indian, she, too, is an outsider being raised by strangers, and she, too, has unanswered questions about the past. As her emotional barriers begin to crumble, Molly discovers that she has the power to help Vivian find answers to mysteries that have haunted her for her entire life - answers that will ultimately free them both."
My thoughts: Although you pretty much knew where this story line was going from the first few pages, the history about the orphan trains really intrigued me. I want to find out more about the actual orphan trains and hopefully some autobiographies. I know I have read another books about the trains to Kansas but I can't remember what it was called. I also can't make up my mind if these trains were a good thing for the children. On the one hand they got of the streets and got a "home", but then again that home was perhaps worse then what they could have ended up with on the streets.
The second book I read was Divergent by Veronica Roth:
Here is the synopsis from Goodreads.com: "In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue--Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is--she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are--and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her"
My thoughts: Well first of all I like this book because it takes in dystopian Chicago and the author went to Northwestern. It also has the kind of hook that "Hunger Games" had - mild girl turns tough and faces all sorts of obstacles. The whole five factions is interesting as well. But as I read this book I was shocked at how violent it was - and violence without remorse or any kind of real emotional distress. The main character Tris was sad for like 5 seconds and then like "this is who I am, I guess I don't care." I feel like that is serial killer mentality - I definitely want to read the second one to see if I feel the same.
Now I am on to a book about the civil war...
Until next week!