Cover image for The exiles at home
The exiles at home
McKay, Hilary.
Personal Author:
First U.S. edition.
Publication Information:
New York : M.K. McElderry Books ; Toronto : Maxwell Macmillan Canada ; New York : Maxwell Macmillan International, 1994.
Physical Description:
200 pages ; 22 cm
The four Conroy sisters' efforts to raise money in order to sponsor a ten-year-old boy in Africa get them into one difficult situation after another.
Format :


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X Juvenile Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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The four Conroy sisters' efforts to raise money in order to sponsor a ten-year-old boy in Africa get them into one difficult situation after another.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 4-7. A sequel to The Exiles (1992), which concerned the four Conroy sisters' summer in Cumbria, this novel takes up their story just before Christmas and details their adventures through the following year. The understated humor and true-to-life characters recall Nesbit's novels about the Bastable children and Cleary's Ramona books, but Ruth, Naomi, Rachel, and Phoebe Conroe are originals, falling into their own idiosyncratic predicaments and muddling their way out again. In this novel, 12-year-old Ruth rashly signs up to sponsor an African boy's schooling at 10 a month and then finds out her mother disapproves of the program. The problem of earning the money and sending it off secretly each month leads Ruth and her younger sisters into an episodic saga of gain, loss, and redemption. With four girls in the spotlight, center stage gets a little crowded, but even minor figures emerge as memorable, believable characters. Refreshing for its wit and emotional candor, this sequel will leave readers hoping for more. ~--Carolyn Phelan

Publisher's Weekly Review

The very funny sequel to The Exiles has four often devilish British sisters devising creative ways to sponsor an African boy's education. Ages 8-12. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-7-A novel with a single, simple conflict. The plot centers around Ruth, 13, who, impulsively and without her parents' knowledge, pledges 10 pounds a month to support a young boy's schooling in Africa. Desperate to raise the promised money, she enlists the help of her three younger sisters, and, for a year, they secretly work to earn, borrow, or steal the funds. This is the heart of the novel, surrounded by a few amusing incidents along the way. Neighbors, Big Grandma, the girls' parents, an elderly couple, and even the vicar become entangled in the efforts to acquire cash. In the end, their grandmother discovers their secret, and all is resolved happily-an elderly neighbor has died and left a trust fund for the boy and money for the girls to visit Africa. There just is no meat to this story. There is little that distinguishes the Conroy sisters from one another, as none of them are developed as individuals. Also, characterizations of the minor characters are clichéd. To add to the confusion, the meaning of the title will not be clear to those who haven't read The Exiles (McElderry, 1992), and some readers may have difficulty with the British terminology and colloquialisms.-Lucinda Lockwood, Thomas Haney Secondary School, Maple Ridge, BC (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.