August 19, 2010
2 Great Books About Adoption
by Adrienne Breaux
We all know that adoption is a valid and important way in which many people create families. Sometimes it's adopting children or babies domestically or internationally, and sometimes it's by adopting a new pet, like a cat or a dog. Chances are you know someone either in your family or through a friend or coworker who’s life has been touched by adoption. The stories are always unique, touching and we love hearing every one of them.
This month we kept our eyes and ears open for any stories about adoption that were particularly inspiring, and were delighted when we were contacted by the folks at Tribute Books. Long known for publishing and promoting books with wonderful messages, they had two book suggestions for this month’s theme on adoption, and we highly recommend you check them out.
The first book we’d like to tell you about is Second Chance: How Adoption Saved a Boy with Autism & His Shelter Dog by Sandra Gerencher. In this easy-to-read book, Gerencher writes from an interesting perspective, Chance, the 4-month-old Rottweiler German Shepherd mix that is adopted to be a companion to Ryan, who is also adopted and living with Autism. You read about Chance coming home to live with the mom, the son and the household’s other doggie friends.
You read about how Chance had to get settled in, learn the lay of the land and get to know everyone. You really get a sense of what it must be like for an adopted dog coming into a strange new environment through Gerencher’s captivating descriptions. Soon, images of the day-to-day life of this family make way for more serious topics like how Ryan came to be adopted. Don’t be fooled by the narrator being a dog; the story isn’t told in a simplistic way, rather an easy to digest and rich way, full of detail, care and interest. Lighthearted, yes, but you’ll find yourself both enjoying the book and learning from it, as well. Second Chance: How Adoption Saved a Boy With Autism and his Shelter Dog sells for $11.07 on amazon.com.
The next book we’d like to recommend is Red in the Flower Bed: An Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption, by Andrea Nepa. Eight-year-old Leah was born in September of 2001 in a Vietnamese hospital in Ho Chi Minh City. Adopted by Andrea and her husband David from the orphanage as an infant, Leah and her new family live in Haddonfield, NJ. This children’s fiction book is written by Andrea to help parents who have adopted, kids who are adopted and everyone in between understand just what adoption is, and how a loving, caring family can come from adoption.
The journey of adoption—anyone who has ever undertaken adopting a child will understand that it really is a journey—is told through a metaphor of a poppy flower who is welcomed into a flower family. Seeds are planted, blooms grow, plants thrive—and all this great word imagery is surrounded by beautiful illustrations. It’s simple and lovely, and understood by children of many ages and adults alike. A portion of the proceeds of the sale of this book will go to Paul’s Kids, a Vietnamese orphanage charity. You can purchase your own lovely copy of Red in the Flower Bed from Amazon.com for $11.65.
What books, poems or websites have helped you and your family understand and explore the topic of adoption? We would love to hear your recommendations.