Orphans' Inn

Fiction - Historical - Personage
126 Pages
Reviewed on 09/02/2015
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

In Orphans' Inn by Martha Deeringer, Charity and Hope are orphans. Their parents died from yellow fever and now they are being sent across the country to Austin, to live with a great-uncle whom they've never met. Their two brothers are being left behind in the care of their mother's best friend and neighbor. Charity is very much what her name suggests. Although she's not the oldest, she takes on the responsibilities of the oldest child, taking care of her older sister, Hope, who is numbed with grief, and caring for all those she comes in contact with during their arduous adventure, even their grumpy great-uncle. The girls endure countless hardships on their wagon ride west, only to arrive at their great-uncle's hotel to find a man who despises everything and everyone around him. Yet, in the end, this cantankerous old man has some hidden ounce of decency in him, and a slight affection towards Charity, although he always forced himself to hide it.

Martha Deeringer has written an action-packed, compassionate story about the rigors of life in the old west, paying special attention to the sad lot of orphaned children in the nineteenth century. The main characters are well described and very believable. The plot develops well, after a slightly rocky beginning. The author's talent in describing the scenes, the characters, and the actions/events that transpire keeps the reader spellbound until the very end. There is good attention to historical detail, making the story very believable. It is an outstanding story about the old west. Very well done!