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4.26  ·  Rating details ·  42 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
With a large dose of humor and warmth, ORFAN lets the reader in on the loss, grief, trauma, and isolation that children experience when the foundation of a loving parent is pulled out from under them, and they are placed in homes where they are not loved or appreciated, or even safe. While ORFAN has a fantastical side that allows us to reach in and enjoy the story of JD, i ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published December 1st 2010)
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Mar 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
From the opening pages of "Orfan", it is very obvious Skolnick has spent a great deal of time listening to parents who have lost children to adoption and people who were adopted. The opening pages of the book are one of the clearest distillations of the experience of mothers from the Baby Scoop Era I have read. Indeed, this is one of the few adoption-related fiction books that "gets it," and the treats the natural family, the adoptive parents, and most importantly, the adoptee with dignity (i.e. ...more
Gayle Swift
Nov 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
FABULOUS book ... riveting...engaging...kept reminding of "Prayer for Owen Meany" and "Cider House Rules." Flawless prose reveal quirky characters who feel believable as well as fascinating. Readers will find themselves rooting for the hapless orphan at the center of the story. His resilient spirit will steal your heart. As misfortune after misfortune befalls him, he struggles to keep his head above water and not be annihilated by the petty prejudices of those who cross his path, turn a blind ey ...more
Bonnie Trachtenberg
Jul 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It's been a long while since I've been able to concentrate on a novel. Lately, with all the craziness in the world, I've had a lot of trouble focusing on fiction. From the first page though, Orfan had me hooked. Corie Skolnick's writing is so engaging and this story is so fresh and original. Written from varying perspectives, it's the story of a boy named James Deane who is reluctantly given up for adoption, and his remarkable, tragic, and amazing life afterwards. I'm very impressed by Skolnick' ...more
Ted Guevara
Aug 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Corie Skolnick’s Orfan is as delightful to read as it is a literary feat. To have that balance in a book is rare in so that it blankets and beckons the general public. Everybody would want to experience this book. It was a treat for me due to its abundance of knowledge, its intricate weaving in the plot, always setting the reader to get the full effect of an upcoming scene, and mostly, Orfan smoothly encourages one to have an imaginary friend or idol, saying mindfully it’s okay and natural for a ...more
Shelly Hickman
Feb 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I'm not sure where to begin. I finished this book last night and it had me in tears more than once. Sorrowful tears, but also joyous tears. JD is a person who has endured one loss after another throughout his life, but still manages to maintain kindness, even for those who have done him wrong, like his grandmother. Maybe you have even met a person such as this, someone who has endured more tragedy than we can even fathom, and yet they not only survive, but inspire us by their grace. This is JD.

Jenni Ogden
Jun 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
This is a delight to read, and unlike anything I have read before. The central character, Jimmy Deane (JD), was adopted at birth in 1969, at the height of the Civil Rights movement in the US. His new white Florida parents didn’t care that their beautiful new son was half black, but by the time he was five his father and mother were dead. From there on life threw everything bad imaginable at him (especially his selfish, racist, alcoholic adoptive grandmother). His saviours came in the form of his ...more
Sandy Lenahan
ORFAN by Corie Skolnick is a treasure that flew way under my radar when it was published in 2010. Reminiscent of Percival Everett's I am not Sidney Poitier (another awesome book that should not be missed IMHO) Skolnick's coming of age story really shouldn't be missed.

ORFAN is heartbreakingly sad and maddening at the same time. You'll root for JD and be tickled by Gillis many transformations but your heart will still hurt for all the loss that's heaped on JD's young shoulders. I found myself aski
Laura Dennis
Jan 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Adult Adoptee’s Review of a Magical Adoption Fable

Corie Skolnick’s sweet, sorrowful coming-of-age story of Jimmy Deane (JD for short), a mixed ethnicity infant adoptee born in Illinois the late 1960s, wove its way into my heart. Then it left a lasting, hopeful impression.

Shifting ably through different points-of-view, we see that while his Southern white adoptive parents have every intention of giving him unconditional love for the rest of JD’s life; well of course that’s not the way it turns ou
Stacey Moore
Mar 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
More than just a good story, this page turner is an incredible journey that really tested and healed my resilience. From start to finish I was compelled to read on. I could not wait to know how our main character's life was going to turn out. I was on a roll and I really wanted more. When it was over, it felt like that minute after you've already opened every gift under the Christmas tree and you realize that there are no more, I missed the characters instantly when the book was over. I enjoyed ...more
Lori Holden
Apr 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
If you're like me, all you have to do is read the first three pages of "Orfan" and you'll be hooked. The first scene, a labor & delivery room in a hospital in 1969, grabbed me in a way few novels do.

JD, the title character, has a lot of strikes against him. But for each loss he endures as he grows up, he also encounters kindness and love in surprising places. I loved the history of music woven into this book, as well as the insights about the human condition and psychological resilience. Cor
Jun 18, 2012 rated it liked it
This was one of those books I couldn't put down, but for the same reason you can't look away from a train wreck. How many bad things can happen to one person?! The end was predictable and the language got progressively worse. That said... I would still recommend it.
Patricia Mann
Dec 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Love this book!
Ahmed Gamal
Apr 06, 2013 is currently reading it
Shelves: orfan
i hope i will finish orfan in fastter enybody !!
Sep 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Would have liked to see interaction between Jimmy and his schoolmates. The story kept him more isolated than was realistic. Otherwise, very good. Fast, interesting, lots of surprises.
Jul 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
This was a book that I considered to be a "good read". It's one that just takes you away from the first page and leaves you wanting more. I can't wait to read more of Corie's work.
Nov 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Story about an orphan, his background and what he goes through and how it molds him. Story is well written and gives a thorough insight to children born of two races during the sixties.
Terri Galinato
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Nov 19, 2015
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Myka Winder
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Dec 02, 2013
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