The Orphan's Tale

The Orphan's Tale - Pam Jenoff

I really enjoyed this novel. I feel that although I didn’t love the main character like I should, I admired the secondary characters for who they were and what they stood for. The main character Noa, she frustrated me too much. From the beginning, she wanted her independence but she didn’t have the persistence and zest to back it up. Concealing a Jewish infant, masquerading this child as her own, I felt that Noa needed to have the drive to perform any job that is offered to her which would then provide for their needs. Instead she balks at the job the circus needs her for and she considers her other options. As she is working with Astrid, her attitude becomes childlike and tiring. She puts too much on the line as the story progresses, not just herself but others including Theo, the child she claims as her own. I found myself wanting to know more about Herr Neuhoff, the owner of the circus. This man seemed to have deep motives for what he was doing with his life and I became curious. Each year the circus was losing more money, as the war continued, their route become more constricted, the group that made up his production consisted of an extensive group of individuals, individuals that Herr felt very close but could hurt him and the business considerably. What was Herr Neuhoff all about? I also liked Astrid, I thought she was very genuine and you knew where you stood with her. Yet there was a cautious side about her. Astrid liked to push herself, she tried to make herself a better person and she tried to help others reach their potential. The ending was not what I expected, I didn’t shed a tear which surprised me, as I have heard from many individuals that they cried at the end of this novel. I felt sorry for both Astrid and Noa as the story wound itself down.