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Adoption Book Club


Guest Leslie

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People are always asking to borrow my books.  I gladly give them away. The books are sometimes returned, usually tattered and obviously well-read.  I have started a list of FABULOUS books that have helped me through various stages of adoption and parenting. Some of them do not have the author's name...those are the ones I no longer have...SOMEONE hasn't returned them!

Here are my favorites - indispensible to my personal library - with my brief synopsis:

1.  When Friends Ask About Adoption.  Linda Bothun.  Wonderful, short, to-the-point book I often give to new friends and family. Great reference for answers to most often asked questions about adoption.  This truly is a resource book for all people.

2.  Secret Thoughts of An Adoptive Mother.  Jana Wolff.

A moving, funny, and forthright memoir.  I can't tell you how much I adore this book.  Jana Wolff is so engaging and openly writes what we all feel.

3.  Operating Instructions.  Anne LaMott.  Another memoir.  Some of you may not like this book.  She is irreverent, completely honest and totally passionate about her newborn son.  Laugh outloud funny and heartbreaking in its honesty.

4.  Raising the Rainbow Generation.  Dr. Darlene Powell-Hopson.  A "through the ages" book that tackles the issues of race and cultural diversity.  Important for me because of Zoe, our daughter, who at age 4 already makes comments about being "different.  See below for a book on sibling diversity.

5.  The Color Of Water.  James McBride.  A memoir (again) of a bi-racial man raised by his white southern Jewish mother.  A difficult read only because of the heart breaking hard times the family encountered.

6.  Three Steps To a Strong Family.  Linda & Richard Eyre.  Geared mostly toward discipline for older children, but gives great ideas for consistency and responsibility.  A few ideas I use on a daily basis:  "the Start-over or Begin-again."  The "repenting bench"  and establishing daily family "traditions."

7.  The Difficult Child.  Stanley Turecki.  Not finished with this one yet - but the book is easy to read and easy to put into practice so far.  Great as a resource for parenting our Josh - who came to us at 3 and a half years old.  And speaking of Josh...

8. The Good Son.  Michael Gurian.  My husband has read this one.  He thinks it is about time we targeted a way to parent boys.  The subtitle is:  Shaping the Moral Development of Our Boys and Young Men.

9.  Dear Birthmother.  Kathleen Silber.  A MUST READ for adoptive parents and a WONDERFUL gift to your birth families.  This is a compilation of letters between birthmothers and adoptive parents.  I cried over and over reading this!  Our birthmothers loved it, too.  

FOR THE CHILDREN:

1. Is That Your Sister?  Catherine and Sherry Bunin.  Wonderful book told through the words of an adopted little girl.  I LOVE THIS BOOK!

2.  Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born.  Jamie Lee Curtis.  How many times have I read this?  Let me count the ways....We read this one at LEAST once a week.  Once the story is over, we launch into our own "Tell Me Again" stories about about how each one of them came into our families.  We have added (or deleted) parts as they have grown older.  All of Jamie Lee Curtis' successive books are just as fun and interesting.  The illustrations are fabulous.

3.  Horace.  Holly Keller.  From the jacket cover:  "A family has nothing to do with the color (or the pattern) of your skin."  This is a cute cute cute book about how Horace the leopard learns the above lesson about his tiger striped family.  

4.  Happy To Be Nappy.  Bell Hooks.  This was a  controversial book when it was published.  We LOVE this book.  It is funny and exuberant book that celebrates girl power!

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Hi, Leslie! Welcome to the Forum!

Your post was so good, I'm copying it to a couple other places (and goodness knows, with a little tribe of three impeccably behaved children, you know from whence you speak!)

Incidentally, aside from "Twenty Things Adopted Children Wish their Parents Knew," "Color of Water" and "Dear Birthmother", I have to tell you, Annie Lamott's "Operating Instructions" is one of my lifetime, personal favporites (see also "Traveling Mercies" by her) and I am so glad you shared her with the rest of my favorite families! Thanks!

Love, Elizabeth

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Elizabeth,

I have read Traveling Mercies and it, too, is one of my favorites.  The personal path to spiritual guidance is a favorite topic of mine!  

Maybe we can add a general "Book Club" recommendation post.  I am always looking a good read.  I just finished ANOTHER memoir - David Sedaris' "Naked."  Laugh out loud funny and irreverent!

Am working on "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" by David Eggers.

As for my tribe - huh - they just SEEM well-behaved!!

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  • 8 months later...

I have finally picked up a copy of the book "Theory of Relativity"written by Jaqueline Michard ( I think I spelled that right). I cried and cried and then cried more!  This was a book based on a true story and Elizabeth sent a lil note out on it in July. The author is one of us and a real friend of Abrazo!

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  • 1 year later...

Ok, I read a children's book last week to my friend Kayla.  I was wondering if anyof you had heard of it or know the title?  It is about a Kangaroo with an empty pouch, she prays to God for someone to fill her pouch, then one day a baby blue bird falls into her pouch, and they live happily ever after.

I thought this book was so cute at just kinda explaining adoption...in a round about way.

-Angel

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This book referral is not an "adoption read", per se, but it is the new bestseller, and was written by an Abrazomom, one of our own! Check it out: Twelve Times Blessed, a novel by Jacquelyn Mitchard, just hit the store shelves nationwide.

Given that the author is not just one of the greatest contemporary novelists of our time but is also the generous benefactress of Abrazo's Allegretti-Mitchard Birthparent Scholarship Fund, we highly--and shamelessly--recommend this new book to all readers everywhere!

:p

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  • 8 months later...

I was at our local library branch yesterday, and was looking for children's books for Catherine when one caught my eye.  Scanning the titles, I caught the word "Adoption" in the title.  I selected the book, entitled "Over the Moon, An Adoption Tale" by Karen Katz, 1997 Henry Holt and Co publishers.  Ms Katz and her husband adopted a baby girl from Central America in 1991.  Although this was a foreign adoption, the emotions she writes about are real to all of us..."The door opened and there was the baby all soft and small.  At last she was in her new mommy's and daddy's arms.  Over the top of the blanket two tiny eyes looked up at them, and the mommy and daddy looked back at her.  Then they hugged her and hugged her -- at least a hundred times!  They were so happy.  Still, the new mommy and daddy were nervous.  They had never taken care of a teeny-tiny baby before.  But they fed her and changed her and played with her and bathed her.  And before they knew it, their first day as a family was over, and they could not wait for the next one to begin."  The book is beautifully illustrated with vibrant colors.  In the author's note, Ms Katz writes "Having the opportunity to express the magic of adoption with paint and words is a great joy to me.  It is my gift to our daughter and to the children and parents who have shared this journey."  I recommend this little book whole heartedly to be shared with your children.

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  • 10 months later...

It's not an adoption book, per se, but Marlo Thomas' new children's book, Thanks & Giving, is at the top of my Christmas gift-giving list this year, and all proceeds go to benefit St. Jude's Childrens' Hospital. It's an awesome collection of stories and poems for kids, and there's even a soundtrack available, as well. Check it out... it's a great complement to her first volumes, "Free to Be You & Me" (remember, way back when?) and "Free To Be a Family" (which did include the adoption topic.)

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Hi all,

I wanted to tell everyone about what opportunities we have in our state and hopefully many of you have in yours.

We live in Alabama and there is a group called Alabama Post Adoption Connection (APAC). It is a support group, but it also provides many benefits. There are libraries at the sites and you can go to the site or just get online and request a book. It is free and there is a huge list of books sorted by topic to choose from. They will send you the book and you send it back when you are done. Some of our friends here just love it. I personally have not taken advantage of this yet. I am still reading some of the few books we have ordered for our personal use.

Everyone have a wonderful holiday season.

Lisa

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  • 2 months later...

This is not a book about adoption but it is such a good book that I had to recommend it. It is my absolute favorite book of all times. It is called, You Are Special by Max Lucado. I bought it several years ago for my oldest son and then thought we lost it 3 years ago when we moved. Anyway I found it the other day and read it to my 4 year old and then my 2 year old cuddled next to me to listen to the story. It's a great book for all ages! I love, I love, I love this book!

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  • 11 years later...

I am sure this has been covered elsewhere on here but I am looking for a book list recommended for Adoptive Parents or Parents in Waiting that helps them understand or grasp some of the issues that Adult (or Teen) Adoptees may experience. I remember from Orientation Primal Wound was one....as well as Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Parents Knew. The main reason I am asking is because the therapist I see works with Adult Adoptees and as we talk about adoption and my thoughts (I am a birthmother and a mom through adoption) she is very interested and open to learning more and asked if there were books I could recommend. I told her everything I know is thanks to Abrazo and the exceptional job they do educating Parents In Waiting and most of the Adoption books I've read were on the list Abrazo gave us 13 years ago when we were eagerly awaiting the placement of our first child. I may still have the list tucked away but am lazily asking if that list is readily available AND if there are any updates? It's been a long time since I've been on the Forum....I sure miss it. Yay!! Just after posting this I found the topic called Suggested Reading....so happy. Exactly what I was looking for but if there are other books, I'd love to know.

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