It is 1924. Sadie and her little sister, Flora, are struggling with the challenges of a new school, a new town and a life without their parents. They used to live in Canada, but then their mother died and their father decided to try his luck prospecting for gold in the interior of Newfoundland. With no home of their own, Sadie and Flora must stay in a cold, grim boarding house in St. John's, owned by the stern Mrs. Hatch.
Sadie tries hard to provide her sister with love and stability, but it's an uphill struggle. The girls at Bishop Spencer School for Girls are mean to Sadie, partly because she is a foreigner from Canada, and partly because she is smart and does well in her classes. And although she makes a new friend-Teddy, whom she met when her family stayed at the hotel his parents run-theirs is a different kind of friendship, one that Sadie finds difficult to navigate.
Sadie's world is rocked when her father stops writing to her and, more crucially, stops sending money to Mrs. Hatch. Terrified that something has happened to her father, and well aware she and Flora may be sent to an orphanage, Sadie quickly learns that everything depends on her.
With The Word for Home, award-winning author Joan Clark has created a moving novel about one girl's search for friendship, love and security, and the place her search leads her-a place called home.
An elegant read with an old-fashioned flavour, there are many delightful passages to be savoured in this book.
(- Edmonton Journal)