The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls

Legrand, Claire, 1986-

Paperback - 2013
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls
Practically-perfect twelve-year-old Victoria Wright must lie, sneak, and break the rules when her investigation of the disappearance of her best--and only--friend, Lawrence, reveals dark secrets about her town and the orphanage run by the reclusive Mrs. Cavendish.

Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2013
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781442442924
Branch Call Number: J FIC L
Characteristics: viii, 343 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm


From Library Staff

12-year-old Victoria discovers that a local orphanage is something far more sinister when she sets out to investigate a series of disappearances. A terrifying tale laced with chilling secrets and stunning revelations.

From the critics

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Dec 26, 2014
  • mmcbeth29 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

mmcbeth29 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

May 09, 2013
  • orange_cat_2391 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

orange_cat_2391 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over


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Dec 26, 2014
  • mmcbeth29 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Frightening or Intense Scenes: Eating of human flesh, multitudes of evil bugs, people being "taken", plus more

Dec 26, 2014
  • mmcbeth29 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Violence: child abuse


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Dec 26, 2014
  • mmcbeth29 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Victoria, a perfectionist, befriends Lawrence, a musical slouch. They are an unlikely pair, but when Lawrence disappears, Victoria sets out to find him. She notices other children disappearing and adults acting in very strange ways. Even after being warned not to stir the waters, Victoria asks questions and researches the Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls where she believes the children, as well as some adults, have been taken. Eventually, Victoria is taken as well and continues her research from the inside. Is the Home a part of Mrs. Cavendish? What is in the dark garden? What moves at night in the Home? Where do the children who never return go? These are some of the questions she must answer in order to free herself and the other taken children.

This book is a horror novel, plain and simple. There is a lot of scary suspense as well as disgusting moments (eating of human flesh) and large sprinklings of child abuse. Mrs. Cavendish hits the children repeatedly as well as emotionally torturing them. Many of the pages have drawings of the ever present evil cockroaches. There is a lot of screaming in the darkness, people living in a "drugged" state and missing bodies.

I would not normally read this sort of book or recommend it, but once I started I could not get away from the mystery aspect of it. Where were the children? I enjoyed Victoria putting her superior attitude to work to save the children. There were quite a few holes in the story and parts that seemed not to belong, but the story flowed well and was riveting.

This story is recommended for ages 10 and up. I would recommend it for grades 6 and up, however, and only for those who enjoy reading horror and are not sensitive to dark subjects. Otherwise, if you are looking for a light read, I would give this book a pass as it is extremely scary and may very well give you nightmares. The multitudes of cockroaches alone were enough to creep me out but the child abuse was beyond heartbreaking.


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The Cavendish Home for Boys and Girls
Legrand, Claire, 1986-
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