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Olivia Twist by Lorie Langdon

I love retellings--fairy tales, classics, alternate histories--I’m drawn to all of them. Some are more satisfying than others, but I always appreciate retellings when the original story is recognizable, but the author gives it a creative spin. Olivia Twist met my expectations and, although it doesn’t have the poetic language of Dickens, it is a fun imagining of ‘what happened after.’

When Oliver Twist is found and rescued by his (her) uncle, a new life begins. She can finally stop masquerading as a boy and enter London Society as Olivia Brownlow. Although her life is now one of comfort, Olivia feels compelled to help the children living on London’s streets. She continues sneaking to the slums dressed as a boy and tries to share what she can with the orphans. Olivia’s life gets even more complicated when she meets Jack MacCarron, a stranger who brings up even more of her past.

Even with some anachronisms and a lot of artistic license, Olivia Twist is an entertaining story both for lovers of Dickens and for those new to this story.

Recommended ages--12 and up

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