Usually when a book alternates between two different time periods I end up liking the past better than the present day. Finally I have found a book where I like both of the time periods (although I have to admit that it wasn't always the case that I liked them both while reading it). The reason for that is because of how similar and heartbreaking both story lines were. Both of the main characters, Molly and Vivian, have had such heartbreaking experiences during their childhood and they managed to connect and become friends because of it.
I was completely unaware of the orphan trains that actually ran throughout the country during the time period that is mentioned in this book. I felt such emotion for Vivian when reading her story that it was shocking to find out that things like this actually took place. I became so connected to these characters and was so emotional over their experiences. I would highly recommend this book even if you don't like alternating between time periods.