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Through the Lock

3.54 of 5 stars 3.54  ·  rating details  ·  24 ratings  ·  5 reviews
Etta and her brother and sister, wards of the state of Massachusetts in 1840, have been parceled off to separate foster homes. Determined to gather her family back together and create a secure home for herself and her siblings, Etta has run away from the last in a long string of foster homes, resolved to find a place where they can live as a family. In her search, she enco ...more
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published April 23rd 2001 by HMH Books for Young Readers
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Miss Amanda
gr 5-8 160 pgs

1840, Connecticut. 12 year old orphan Etta is determined to find a way to reunite her "family" : her younger brother, living on a farm, and her older sister, working in a mill. In her search, she comes across a shack near the river and meets Walter who is living there. Walter and Etta are eventually joined by Jake. Each of them is looking for a new start and end up forming a kind of family. Etta wonders if she will be to unite her two families together.

Great story. The lock in the
Laura Verret
All Etta wants is a place where she and her fellow orphaned siblings can stay together and be safe as a family. When she finds the tiny cabin in the woods, she thinks that this may be the very spot!

But the cabin is already occupied by a boy named Walter. He takes her in and agrees to help her find work, but she does not tell him her true wish – to invite her siblings to live with them. Instead, she carefully works to make this possible and endeavors to help Walter in his small jobs.

When Walter l
Robert Gilbert
My family read this book aloud this winter and we all enjoyed it. Yes, the part about the body was odd, but also realistic. The characters are especially interesting when you read the author's note about them at the end of the book. It also made for a good point-of-reference for studying that period of American history.

This book opened the door for a discussion on maturity levels of children today in comparison to our great grandparents. There are several things the characters do in this book t
This book is okay. I was only interested because it was about runaway kids, not slaves but kids treated unkindly or have no parents. The ending is bad too, but I guess it's ok...
Stephanie A.
Bland characters, lacking in exciting plot.
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