Haunting and yet familiar

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The Orphan Collector tells the tale of Pia Lange, an impoverished thirteen year old German girl who has lived in the US since the age of six. As the story opens she is attending a Liberty Bonds parade to help with funding for "The Great War" with her mother and infant twin brothers in 1918 Philadelphia, mere days before the "Spanish influenza" sweeps the city (according to multiple sources that studied the 1918 pandemic this parade was one of the main reasons Philadelphia was hit so hard).

This story, though set over 100 years ago, had an unnervingly contemporary feel to it in early 2021 as we are battling a pandemic of our own, ] tightly wrapped in the fear of immigrants as the other, and our nation at war not with a foreign power, but with itself.

Pia faces a deadly virus, poverty, bigotry, and a world at war as best a young girl can. She does not always make the right decisions, she does not always face the world with sunny optimism, in fact her natural mien is one of fear, however she continues to persevere.