When the Road Ends

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9780380720118: When the Road Ends

Adam, Mary Jack, and Jane are foster children in the home of a minister, and Mary Jack is determined that they become ""the absolutely perfect family."" By the author of The Rain Catchers. Reprint. PW. H. AB. SLJ.

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About the Author:

Jean Thesman is the author of more than a dozen books for young readers. She makes her home with her husband in Bothell, Washington.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5-8-- Mary Jack Jordan, 12, tells this story of the summer she and two other foster children, 14-year-old Adam and a badly abused, nameless 7-year-old called Jane, spend with their foster father's sister, Cecile Bradshaw, in a cabin in rural Washington. What further complicates this story is that Cecile has received serious head injuries in an automobile accident that killed her husband, and the housekeeper hired to care for all of them has run off. Not wishing to return to their unhappy foster home, Mary Jack and Adam conspire to find a way to remain at the cabin. Cecile's slow recovery, Jane's essential helplessness, a threatening neighbor, an accident, and the lies they must tell nearly overwhelm them, despite the kindness of an old friend of Cecile's and Mary Jack's fierce desire to keep her ``family'' together. Like Mary Call in the Cleavers' Where the Lilies Bloom (Lippincott, 1969), Carly in Byars's The Pinballs (HarperCollins, 1977), and the heroine of her own book, Rachel Chance (Houghton, 1990), Mary Jack takes on responsibilities far beyond her years in an effort to hold onto something secure. Like these other heroines, she too is at last able to find adults she can trust to help her. While the novel paints a darker portrait of the anguish of foster children than Byars's novel, it should appeal to younger readers who liked it and Paterson's The Great Gilly Hopkins (Crowell, 1978). Because it is enlivened by humor, strong characterization, and a hopeful ending, older readers who have enjoyed Thesman's other books will find it satisfying as well. --Barbara Chatton, College of Education, University of Wyoming, Laramie
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Thesman, Jean
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