An engaging adventure from a Newbery Honor-winning storyteller for readers who love the circus, and anyone who has dreamed of finding the perfect home.
Four orphans have escaped from the Home for Friendless Children. One is Lucy, who used to talk and sing. No one knows why she doesn't speak anymore; silence is her protection.
The orphans find work and new friends at a traveling circus. Lucy loves caring for the elephants, but she must be able to speak to them, and to warn others of danger. If Lucy doesn't find her voice, she'll be left behind when the circus goes on the rails. Meanwhile, people are searching for Lucy, and her puzzling past is about to catch up with her.
This lively, heartwarming novel by the award-winning author of the Tales from Alcatraz series is full of marvels and surprises.
About the Author
Gennifer Choldenko was the youngest in a family of four kids, where her nickname was “Snot-Nose.” Her quirky sense of humor made its debut at the dinner table when Gennifer was a very little kid. She is the author of seven children’s books, including Notes from a Liar and Her Dog, a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year; If a Tree Falls at Lunch Period; and Al Capone Shines My Shoes.
"This uplifting tale of hope, survival, and belonging has all the ingredients to become a beloved middle grade book." —Publishers Weekly
"This story of friendship, inner strength, and family comes in an adventurous package that will appeal to readers of realistic fiction." —Booklist
"Carefully researched and authentically rendered. . . . A fast-paced, intriguing, and surprising orphan story." —Kirkus Reviews
“The tension and excitement of running away and the fun and fascinating daily life of a circus will keep young readers turning the pages, but it’s Lucy’s real-life backstory that makes Orphan Elevena true and compelling triumph.” —BookPage
“Lucy’s journey is heartwarming as she overcomes her fear of speaking in order to avoid judgment, and finds a new family and home in an unusual place.” —The Bulletin
“The plot races with fascinating glimpses of life in the thirties, and insight into the children’s difficult journey as they search for hope and stability.” —School Library Journal