Always Ask for a Transfer


124 pages
Contains Illustrations
ISBN 0-17-602088-8






Reviewed by Susan Perks

Susan Perks, formerly a teacher and librarian, is a travel agent in
Thompson, Manitoba.


Vancy Kasper’s theme of prejudice toward foster children began when she read an item stating that Scarborough students rated foster children as a lower social class. Always Ask for a Transfer begins when 14-year-old Willy and his younger sister Laura are coming to live with new foster parents, the fourth set in eight months. Willy is suspicious and bitter, wondering if things will be any better in their new home. The story takes place in Toronto, in a traditionally Greek immigrant home. Typical Greek customs and values are woven neatly into the story.

This is an extremely touching book; I found myself wiping away a tear several times, since Willy’s feelings are portrayed so realistically. His confused feelings toward his drunken father are particularly well described.

I would recommend this book to ages 10 to 14. It is informative, of social significance, and especially heart warming.



Kasper, Vancy, “Always Ask for a Transfer,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 23, 2024,