A Cardboard Palace, by Allayne L. Webster


Our Review:
This is the very moving story of 11 year old Jorge, who was taken from his family in Romania and brought to Paris to be part of a gang of children who are thieves and controlled by a man named Bill. Bill collects children and teaches them to beg and steal around Paris. Jorge is loyal and caring and doesn’t like stealing form unsuspecting tourists and he knows it is wrong but he has no other choice if he wants to survive. As the story unfolds Jorge has some tough decisions to make that could ultimately shape his future and the future of everyone in the shanty town. This story highlights world issues such as homelessness, poverty, child trafficking, forced labour and child brides, however it is written in a way that is appropriate for middle grade and teen readers. This is a tender story of hope, courage, survival and strength, of friendships and belonging. Highly recommended. Ages 10 + Review by Jenny