The Face on the Milk Carton

by Caroline B. Cooney, Caroline Bruce

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Student Question

What is the main conflict for the character in "The Face on the Milk Carton"?

Expert Answers

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The main character Janie from Caroline B. Cooney's story "The Face on the Milk Carton" must deal with secrets that surface from Janie's childhood.  Janie was kidnapped as a child and then adopted by another family who did not know the child they adopted was kidnapped.  Years go by, Janie grows up in her adoptive parent's home very happily.  Then, she sees her face on the back of a mil carton where faces of children gone missing would appear. Essentially, Janie must deal with being pulled between two families that love her. When the truth comes out, Janie must go back to live with her biological parents even though her adoptive parents are the only family she has ever known. She must move to a new house, live with a new family and start a new school.  She must fight to understand who she really is now and what she really wants for her life.

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