104th out of 156 books — 47 voters
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Gib Rides Home (Gib #1)
Gib Whittaker's life at Lovell House Orphanage in the early 1900s is pretty bleak. But along with hours of chores, bad food, and paddlings, the boys do get some schooling, and reading and writing are better than scrubbing floors. Still, Gib's fondest dream is to have a real family. So when Georgie Olson is adopted, Gib can't help being jealous, even when he finds out that ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published February 9th 1998 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
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May 18, 2014 Rebecca Douglass rated it liked it
Gib Whittaker has been an orphan since he was small, living at an orphanage where the boys are given a minimal education and lots of hard work. No wonder Gib thinks being adopted would be better, even after he learns that many boys are taken to be farm hands, not really adopted. And all he really wants is to know who he is and where he came from. When Gib is finally adopted, he finds it's both more and less than he'd hoped, and when things go very bad, it looks like it's all over.
The book was a ...more
The book was a ...more
Jul 17, 2012 Leah Good rated it really liked it
No one had heard from Gibson Wittaker since he went away, but the rumor was that he had been adopted by a family who lived near Longford, a small cattle town in the next county. There was nothing especially uncommon about that. Half, or even full, orphans left Lovell House fairly often, going back with a remaining parent or out to an adoption, but what was so shocking was his reappearance. How could Gib Wittaker be strolling into the senior boys’ dormitory when the law said, at least the law acc ...more
To be completely honest, Gib's Ride Home bored me. It's a story about an orphaned boy who is adopted out yet comes back to his orphanage for reasons I will not say as not to spoil it. I just didn't exactly enjoy the story line or the way it seemed to drag on. I am a lover of horse books but this one was not for me.
This lacked the beauty and heart and glorious acceptance of children as they are, compared with books like The Changeling and The Egypt Game. It does benefit from Snyder's excellent writing style, and the characters are real and interesting to see. Young people on a farm, and independent children aren't really my catnip, but the story is strong and doesn't take the easy way out most of the time, so if you like those things you'll like it.
I picked it for Children's Book Week 2010 out as something Regan (from the Trixie Belden series) might like. It's about an orphan in the early 1900's who gets "farmed out" and finds out how much he likes working with horses. It was okay but seemed to miss the boat on several potentially good plotlines.
The two Gib books seem to have been written near the beginning of Snyder's slide into paint-by-numbers; the plots are shrilly overdramatized, and the god's machine is all too visible, but it is still possible to enjoy the stories.
The recipient of three Newbery Honor Book awards for "The Egypt Game," "The Headless Cupid," and "The Witches of Worm," Zilpha Keatley Snyder has been writing books for children since 1964 when her first book, "A Season of Ponies," was published. Since that time she has completed 43 books, mostly for children aged 9 to 13, but also including two books for young adults, four picture books for young ...moreMore about Zilpha Keatley Snyder...
Other Books in the Series
Gib (2 books)