Continues the story of the Petersons family, first begun in "Tug of War". After fleeing from the advancing Russian Army and leaving their family home in Latvia forever, the Petersons arrive in Canada in 1948. But their problems are not over.
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The Petersons, first met in Tug of War (1990) as Latvian refugees in Poland and Germany, have now (1948) arrived in Toronto, thanks to the sponsorship of kind Helen and Ivar Fraser and the promise of a job teaching Latin for father Lukas. But plans immediately go awry: Lukas has a heart attack and can't work, while Ivar's new job takes him to Alberta; still, the Frasers pay the hospital bill and provide emergency funds and a new place to live. The new landlady, though, is grasping and unfriendly and, while all three children find jobs, Hugo's in construction and his twin Astra's at a dry cleaners are grueling and leave them little energy for the education they nonetheless manage to continue. Tomas, 12, works long hours as a delivery boy. Each meets suspicion and prejudice but also makes real friends, and not just among fellow immigrants. Latvian traditions are maintained while the members of the family begin to adopt Canadian ways. The end of their first year finds them in work better suited to their talents, and able to buy a plot where they'll soon build a house. Alternating episodic vignettes concerning the three young people, Lingard builds an authentic picture of immigrants starting over; though the Petersons have many things in their favor, including good luck as well as their drive and intelligence, their experiences are representative of more than this particular setting. Solid and interesting. (Fiction. 11-16) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From School Library Journal:
Grade 7-10-- The story of the Petersons, the Latvian family introduced in Tug of War (Lodestar, 1990), displaced from their home after World War II, continues. A new start in Canada is difficult after their sponsor family is forced to move away and Lukas, the father, collapses from a serious heart condition. The three children, now adolescents, take on jobs and school as they struggle to establish enough of a financial base to begin a new life. New relationships are formed as old ones from another world are remembered. Hugo, 18, must consider his family and his engagement to his wartime girlfriend, Bettina, still in Germany. Good characterization and pathos make this a well-paced historical novel. Although set in the late '40s, the Petersons' story is that of displaced persons of any era and the novel is timely in light of the history-making situation in the Soviet Union today. Both books will give an excellent view of the human side of politics and their results that led to the Baltic states Soviet occupation. --Rita Soltan, Great Neck Public Library, NY
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Book Description Puffin Books, 1995. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0140372970