Contemporary drama Historical drama
Los Angeles, California
February 3, 1927
Orphan Train Quartet
Orphan Train Adventures
Joan Lowery Nixon writes realistic contemporary and historical fiction for young adults. Among her series are the Orphan Train and Ellis Island books.
“Her mysteries for older children are psychological thrillers, involving complicated characterizations and plots and demanding the reader's participation in solving the crimes,” Mary Lystad noted. “Two of these books, The Kidnapping of Christina Lattimore and The Seance, won the coveted Edgar Allan Poe award. In the former, Christina and a young reporter set out to prove her innocence when kidnappers claim that she was an accomplice to their crime. In the latter, what begins as a game, with Lauren and five other girls gathered in a candlelight circle, develops into murder of the participants; soon it will be Lauren's turn.”
The writer frequently uses western settings. Ernestine Linck explained that Nixon “likes to show that children had a part in the development of the West and helped make its history more than a collection of dates and places where battles were fought. With the publication of her books about the Orphan Train Children, her popularity is reaching an ever-widening audience.”