Information about the author.
Wealthy, orphaned Colley is kidnapped, placed in the awful Broggin Home for Boys, and put to work in a dangerous glass factory. Someone wants Colley dead, but that person has not counted on five scrappy boys, fellow inmates, who are determined that Colley will live.
Orphaned twice and all alone in the world, Taddy watches as Neezer and Lucky, two sinister thieves, steal his family’s possessions, and then make him a virtual prisoner. With only table scraps and dry crusts of bread to eat, Taddy and another boy named Beetle are forced to work long, cruel hours carrying freezing, heavy blocks of ice for delivery in Lucky’s ice wagon.
Then a neighbor, Mrs. Mainyard, tells lucky she’d like to hire Taddy during the day as a servant boy. His wages go to Lucky, but he’s better fed. And once inside the sumptuous Mainyard mansion, Taddy sees the impossible—a boy who looks just like him. Can this be the mysterious twin he’d been told about?
Why is there no one waiting to meet Jenny when the coach in which she is traveling stops on the deserted road to let her off? Before her mother died, did she not write Jenny’s grandfather telling him of her coming to live with him? Why, after the grim journey from far-off China, does she have to stumble in the darkness through a tunnel of menacing trees to her new home? Surely a grandfather longing to greet his granddaughter, newly orphaned, would never allow such a thing to happen.
But the real reason for Jenny’s predicament is far worse than anything she could have imagined. For not only has the letter never been received—no one believes a granddaughter exists at all! Only an appeal by the housekeeper earns for her the terrible choice of being sent back to China, or to the cellar to live as a servant girl.
Is Jenny really who she has been told she is? And who in that great, gloomy house cares? Fearful Madame Dupray? Hateful…[more]