Friday, December 31, 2010

The Handmaden review

The Handmaden
December 30, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed

by Kelly

"Red in the Flower Bed" by Andrea Nepa is a touching and beautifully crafted children's book on the topic of interracial adoption.

The story follows a little seed from the beginning of it's journey of uncertainty to the end where it becomes a flower with positive nurturing and care. The seed is an analogy for the child who is to be adopted and gives a gentle explanation for the adoptive child who may wonder why.

The illustrations are very simple yet emotive. The book would suit not only an interracially adoptive family but any adoptive family.

I am a great supporter of adoption and I lament the fact that the adoption process is made so difficult and sometimes inaccessible for so many. The author is an adoptive parent herself which is quite obvious as this is a book written from the heart.

You can learn more about Andrea Nepa or purchase her book here.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Putting Words Down on Paper interview

Putting Words Down on Paper
December 29, 2010

Ten Questions with Andrea Nepa
by Susanne Drazic

Andrea Nepa is the mother of an adopted Vietnamese daughter named Leah. In 2001, Adoptions from the Heart assisted with the international adoption. Andrea dedicated her book, Red in the Flower Bed, to her daughter: "For my dear Leah, whose journey in her young life has already taken her to far away and unexpected places." In 2006, Leah was diagnosed with cancer. She is currently in remission. Andrea lives with Leah and her husband, David, in Haddonfield, New Jersey. She is a registered dietitian for the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

1. Hi Andrea. Could you you tell us a little about yourself?

I grew up in NH and now live in NJ. I still miss the beautiful fall foliage and snow at Christmas from living in New England. I am married with a 9 year old daughter. We have a dog and two cats. I am very close with the cats, but the dog is new, so I am still learning to communicate with him. My hobbies include playing the flute and ice skating. I play music in an ensemble, and recently started taking ice dancing lessons. I work as a clinical nutritionist at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

2. Describe your desk/workspace.

My desk probably looks chaotic, but I know where everything is (most of the time). At work I have several piles on my desk. One pile is for daily/immediate tasks, one for next week's work, another for long term projects and another for other things (such as reading research articles) when I get time for it. So I am quite organized, although you wouldn't know it by looking .

3. Do you have a favorite quote?

My favorite quote is: "The wise learn more from the foolish than the foolish do from the wise." I think this was from a fortune cookie.

4. If you could have coffee with anyone (living or dead, real or fictional), who would it be and why?

If I had the opportunity to have a coffee chat with anyone, it would probably be Laura Ingalls Wilder. I am fascinated by life as she describes it from her time period. I would love to ask her questions about how she survived living as secluded as her family did at times, and how they managed by making/growing/hunting almost everything they owned and ate, with no modern medicine, indoor plumbing, etc. She had the ability to describe the beauty of life with beautiful words, and took joy in the nature around her.

5. What are your top three favorite books and why?

There are so many great books that I don't know that I could narrow it down to three. Some of my favorite books are: Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden (the storyline is captivating and so well put together and life in Japan during that time is fascinating too); Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier (great story you can't stop reading); Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (the storyline is so intricate and well designed and the characters are well defined with great dialogue; interesting insight into how life was among the upper class in England during that time period); The Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency series by Alexander McCall Smith (great fun to read; quirky characters in an African setting; interesting mysteries); all James Herriott books (his true stories about life as a country vet can be hilarious, and his insight into human and animal behavior is awesome) and of course the Little House on the Prairie series.

6. Do you write full-time or part-time?

I occasionally write professionally for work, but I have only written the one children's story.

7. What are your current marketing strategies for Red in the Flower Bed: an Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption?

I have participated in several online blogs targeted to adoptive parents.

8. Could you share about any current writing projects?

No writing projects at the moment!

9. What would be the best way for readers to contact you?

Through my publisher, Tribute Books.

10. Is there anything else you'd like to share?

I was inspired to write Red in the Flower Bed because I feel so fortunate to have my daughter through adoption, and because she would ask questions about her adoption that we were unable to answer because her birth history is unknown. I did it out of love for her, and was especially motivated to write it after she survived a life-threatening illness at the age of five.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Sober Catholic review

Sober Catholic
December 28, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed
by Paul S.

This month I’ve been asked by Tribute Books to review “Red in the Flower Bed” by Andrea Nepa. It is a nice illustrated children’s story about interracial adoption.

At first I wasn’t going to do it as I couldn’t figure out how it might apply to the purpose of this blog, that of recovering from addictions, but then I remembered one of my favorite lines from AA’s “Big Book”:

“We are people who normally would not mix.”

Just as in 12 Step Meetings we quickly learn to look past obvious differences to hear and accept the message that the person has to offer, we learn from this nice little book that “We have a complete rainbow” when we accept others into our family, even though they are different from us. That difference within a unity can be a strength if we acknowledge, accept and cherish our differences as something that makes the whole community greater.

It is a lovely book and nicely introduces interracial acceptance to wee little kiddies.

MotherLode review

December 28, 2010

Review: "Red in the Flower Bed" by Andrea Nepa
by Grace Krispy

"Red in the Flower Bed" by Andrea Nepa is a children's book that tells the tale of interracial adoption by using the analogy of a flower seed. There is no room for the little poppy seed to grow up with the other poppy flowers, so the wind takes it along until it finds a suitable place with room and love for the seed to grow. The seed grows into a lovely red poppy, adding a new color to the flower garden.

Told in rhyme with colorful picture accompaniment, this story will appeal to children (and adults) of all ages. Children reading this story will likely not relate it to the idea of interracial adoption, but that leaves room for interpretations of all kinds. As a result, I think this book will appeal to all types of situations. This book has the potential to open up conversations between parent and child about differences and how those differences make each of us special.

The pictures are simple and engaging. They add context to the simple rhyme. The rhyme changes cadence from verse to verse, which gives it a very artistic feel, but may make reading it aloud a bit awkward the first time. Altogether, a lovely book and a recommended read.

4.5 /5 stars

Read an excerpt of the book here.

Available from Tribute Books and also on Amazon

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Book Bee review

The Book Bee
December 27, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed
by Sarah Duncan

Beautiful written story about interracial adoption, told through the eyes of a little seed. This is the journey of a little seed that finds itself in a strange flower bed. This seed eventually becomes a green plate then a beautiful poppy. Even though this little poppy is different than all the other flowers it is accepted and welcomed into the family.
Heart warming story which gives the message that it is ok to be different. This book talks about adoption in a manner that children will understand. This book is beautifully illustrated and ideal for adoptive parents to explain adoption to the kids.

Putting Words Down on Paper review

Putting Words Down on Paper
December 27, 2010

A Review of Red in the Flower Bed
by Susanne Drazic

Red in the Flower Bed: An Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption

written and illustrated by
Andrea Nepa

Tribute Books

Hardcover - $12.95
Ebook - $4.95
Kindle - $2.99
iPad - $4.99
Nook - $4.95
Google - $3.79

My review:

Red in the Flower Bed is a wonderful story about interracial adoption. It is beautifully told through the journey of a little seed that finds it's way into a flower bed. The seed first grows into a green plant. As it continues to grow, it finally becomes a beautiful red poppy flower. Although it is different from the other flowers, it is welcomed into the garden family. The poppy flower is where it is meant to be.

Red in the Flower Bed talks about adoption in a loving way that children will find comforting and easily understood. The illustrated pages have a unique look, as if they were all done by hand. This book would make a wonderful gift for newly adoptive parents. I think that this is a book that parents will want to share with their children.

Proud Book Nerd review

Proud Book Nerd
December 26, 2010

Review: Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa
by Heather McBride

Red in the Flower BedMy Thoughts: This is an absolutely GORGEOUS book! The illustrations are just beautiful. They are very scrapbook-like, and vibrant. Again, just fabulously GORGEOUS. This book isn’t just visibly appealing, as the story is very sweet, too. I absolutely loved it!

My Rating: 5 stars

Source: Received as part of a blog tour promotion on Tribute Books. (Tribute Books can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.)

Andrea Nepa can be found on Facebook.

More Information: To learn more about Red in the Flower Bed, check out the Web site for the book HERE. Read an excerpt from the book HERE, or watch the trailer:

Read It: Get your own copy HERE.

Nayu's Reading Corner review

Nayu's Reading Corner
December 25, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa
by Jessica Pitcairn

A tale of belonging, uses flowers as a metaphor for adoption

I hadn't read any picture books about adoption, so I jumped at the chance to review this. The illustrations are cheerful, providing a warm feeling to the story. They are deceptively simple, and have a real sense of texture. The message behind the pictures and the story is very important. Adopted children may be chosen by their adoptive parents, but they are loved deeply and very much wanted. Whatever their background, the new family opens them with welcome arms. The adopted child may be of a different race, but that doesn't matter. Skin colour doesn't matter. Being with different flowers doesn't matter. The symbolic poppy is where it belongs - it has helped create a rainbow of colours. Inter-racial adoption adds an extra bundle of energy to a family. Who they are as a person matters infinitely more than what they look like.

Final conclusion
A sweet way of explaining to adopted children how special and loved they are by their new family.

Here's a photo of Andrea with her adopted daughter Leah, to whom she dedicated this book. review
December 25, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed, by Andrea Nepa

by C.F. Mathews

Red in the Flower Bed,written and illustrated by Andrea Nepa

Andrea Nepa dedicates this book to her adoptive Vietnamese daughter. She is writing about what she lives. Red in the Flower Bed is a delightful children’s book about interracial adoption. Adoption is always a pro-life message of hope and possibilities.

Nepa uses the concept of a flower garden to illustrate how those who are different from one another in some ways, can live and love together as a family. Though interracial families are not the average, this book shows that these families are beautiful and should be respected. Red in the Flower Bed can help an adopted child to appreciate the uniqueness of such a family and help the child to process his or her situation emotionally. Its a great book for any child, to learn to appreciate the beauty and dignity of interracial families and adoption. The illustrations are delicate and colorful.

Andrea Nepa lives in New Jersey and works as a dietitian at a children’s hospital. Here is her website:

Tribute Books is a 6 year-old publishing company, started byNicole Langan, a young entrepreneur from Pennsylvania. They accept new manuscripts-instructions are on the website. Topics and types of books include: children’s books, history, historical fiction, humor, photo books, poetry, reference, relationships, religion and sports. They also provide opportunities for fundraising. Here’s the link:

Thursday, December 23, 2010

4 the Love of Books review

4 the Love of Books
December 23, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa
by Abi Buening

I am really sorry to Andrea and Tribute books for being late on this book review posting. I guess the holiday season has just gotten the better of me this week. I thank Tribute books for the opportunity to have reviewed this cute rhyming book with the theme of interracial adoption. The pictures are bright and cheery. It is a short quick sing song book with a very wonderful message. This is a charming message using the poppy seed as the illustration throughout the book. Nepa's book will help a child better understand what adoption truly means.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers review

Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers
December 22, 2010

Blog Tour: Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa

by Gina

Welcome everyone!

It's another day here at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers which means it's time to spotlight another great bookish find. Today we play host to a blog tour courtesy of Nicole at Tribute Books that spotlights a topic that we don't necessarily hear about every day but it impacts the lives of many round the world. In a word....ADOPTION.

Perhaps you know someone that has been adopted or were adopted yourself, the revelation of this news to you may have been hard to understand at first and yet with time you hopefully came to terms with what it truly means. You were loved so much not only by ONE parent or set of parents that made the hard choice of setting you on a path for a better life, but by TWO. You were/are special and are part of a family by more than blood but by CHOICE. Today's blog tour guest and book of choice is...

An Illustrated Children's Story About Interracial Adoption

This is the story of one seeds journey from creation to life and the time it took to find a place to call home. The flower imagery used is beautiful, poetic and rather easy to relate to making this not only a great story to share but a great tool to help explain adoption to inquiring young minds. The child is the seed, the garden flowers the adopting family. While separate they are equally beautiful, but together...they create a masterpiece in color, contrast, and love.

I love how the illustrations mimic an arts and crafts project, or even a scrapbook. Seriously...they have the visible texture of construction paper and fabric, gauze and ribbon, all placed with care to make an image pertinent to that particular point in the story. It may even spark the imagination of those that read the story to create a memory book of their own.

I'm actually rather surprised I haven't seen more books like these. I mean honestly, adoption can be a hard subject to broach and though I'm not speaking from personal experience (unless you count my furry kids), it is there for all to see on TV, in movies, and bookish renditions available to the public. Now I know what you're thinking...those aren't real. Well, whether real as in actual life or real as in acting they still portray the truth in some form and if it's that hard in the land of make believe to come to terms with this sort revelation, can you imagine having the news simply sprung on you as a child of any age? As with anything, the reaction you see all depends on the person or persons involved, but with a good support system in place, it can only help to cushion any impact felt. The gentle nature of this shared tale could certainly serve as one of those cushions of support while working as a means of introducing the concept of adoption in a most positive and loving light.

All in all, a wonderful book for readers young and young at heart with a message of love and acceptance, family and hope. Whether adoption is something that has impacted you personally or is merely a curiosity, this story is certainly one I'd consider sharing with those near to my heart. Want to find out more? To view an excerpt from the book, simply click here.

This book is currently available through the Tribute Books website. More information on this title as well as their full catalog can be found online via the same site, as well as their Facebook page, or Twitter feed. A brief look at the author of this touching story....

Andrea Nepa Bio:
Andrea Nepa is the mother of an adopted Vietnamese daughter named Leah. In 2001, Adoptions from the Heart assisted with the international adoption. Andrea dedicated her book to her daughter: "For my dear Leah, whose journey in her young life has already taken her to far away and unexpected places." In 2006, Leah was diagnosed with cancer. She is currently in remission. Andrea lives with Leah and her husband, David, in Haddonfield, New Jersey. She is a registered dietitian for the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

You can also find the author online via the book's official website, or her Facebook page. Special thanks to Nicole at Tribute Books for both the review copy and chance to host this tour. (THANKS!) Be sure to check out their site for more great bookish finds for all ages and interests.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Children's & Teens' Book Connection review

The Children's & Teens' Book Connection
December 21, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa

by Cheryl Malandrinos

A beautifully told, rhyming story of interracial adoption awaits you in Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa.

The story of adoption is told using nature’s beauty. A poppy lets her seeds go east and west to where they will find their best home. One seed lands in a garden patch and the flowers are thrilled to have her, waiting to see what the tiny seed will turn into. When she finally blooms into a pretty red poppy, she knows she has found her family and she complements them perfectly.

Nepa is the adoptive mother of a young Vietnamese girl named Leah. The book is dedicated to her daughter, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2006. Leah’s cancer is currently in remission.

This lyrical story captures the essence of adoption in a new and unique way. Red in the Flower Bed shares the feelings of both adoptive parents and their children in a symbolic fashion, and its unusual artwork will catch the eye of young and old alike.

This would make a lovely gift for families blessed by adoption. The book can be purchased from the publisher’s website at

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa is an excellent addition to the offerings at Tribute Books. I will be on the lookout for more by this author. You can read an excerpt from this book at:

Book web site:

Andrea Nepa Facebook:!/profile.php?id=1664060822

Tribute Books website:

Tribute Books Facebook:

Tribute Books Twitter:

Rating: :) :) :) :) :)

  • Publisher: Tribute Books
  • ISBN: 9780981461991
  • SRP: $12.95

Monday, December 20, 2010

Passionate Children's Servant review

Passionate Children's Servant
December 20, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed - Book Review
by Theresa Haskins

I selected this book to review for personal reasons; I, too, was adopted! Although our family was not interracial, I think the word adoption stirs up feelings of exclusion and rejection by many. To me, the word means “SPECIAL”. I remember asking my mother (the woman that raised me-she EARNED the honored title of Mother) WHEN she told me I was adopted; she said, “When I rocked you as an infant.” I asked her if she thought my natural mother ever thought about me; she said, “OF COURSE, especially on your birthday.” I also remember asking her if she HATED my natural mother, like I did; she said, “Oh no, I am truly grateful and thankful for your mother. She loved you so much, knowing she couldn’t provide for you, gave you away so someone else could; someone like me and your daddy!” For some reason, that made sense to me. I adored my mother and had an enormous amount of respect for her; so if that’s what she thought, I would think that too! Forever!

My sister was different; being adopted was difficult for her to accept. Although I have no idea if she asked my mother the questions I did, it was apparent she was bothered by the fact and never wanted anyone to know. Honestly, I didn’t care one bit; as a matter of fact, I was PROUD of it! I remember visioning my parents walking through a grocery store meat market – checking out all the little babies – and PICKING ME! I thought I must have been an adorable little girl and I MUST have been irresistible!

My dream is that every child would feel the way I did! And in my opinion, this little illustrated book sends that message, loud and clear! And if you’re a Christian (like me), there is NO DOUBT God placed US right where He intended us to be; in HIS rainbow! WE ARE VERY SPECIAL AND LOVED!

The Missionary Mama review

The Missionary Mama
December 19, 2010

Book Review and Giveaway

by Melissa Gill

Hello! Welcome to The Missionary Mama, today's stop on a the blog tour for the adorable children's book, Red in the Flower Bed: An Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption by Andrea Nepa.

Andrea Nepa and her daughter, Leah
Andrea Nepa is the mother of an adopted Vietnamese daughter named Leah. In 2001, Adoptions from the Heart assisted with the international adoption. Andrea dedicated her book to her daughter: "For my dear Leah, whose journey in her young life has already taken her to far away and unexpected places." In 2006, Leah was diagnosed with cancer. She is currently in remission. Andrea lives with Leah and her husband, David, in Haddonfield, New Jersey. She is a registered dietitian for the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

"The journey of adoption is beautifully depicted with the comforting imagery of a poppy flower who is welcomed into a garden family. It is a charming story of "seeds" being planted in the perfect place - exactly where they belong. Children and adults will enjoy this simple yet meaningful story and homespun illustrations. The book's loving approach helps children to understand adoption. Andrea Nepa has captured the essence of adoption and family, and has illustrated it beautifully with images and poetry that even a small child can comprehend and enjoy."

You can find Andrea Nepa on Facebook.

Buy the book.
You can read an excerpt here.

Thank you to Tribute Books for asking us to be a part of the book tour!

While you're here be sure to enter our hand drawn Christmas card giveaway!

Click here to enter! A winner will be picked tomorrow!

The One True Faith review

The One True Faith
December 18, 2010

Finding the Right Place

by Faith Flaherty

You know how some books are written for one age, yet have a deeper meaning for adults to enjoy? Think of fantasy writers like Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. Such is Red in the Flower Bed, by Andrea Nepa.No where in Red in the Flower Bed is God mentioned. But I picture the adult reading this book to an adoptive child, automatically seeing God's fingers in everything that happens to the little poppy seed that grows up to be a beautiful red poppy.

In fact, in the beginning, I can see why a child hearing:
Good-bye little one,
You will me missed you know
but this is no place for you to grow.
would wish he were living with another family. !!!!! Don't laugh. That happened to me. As a child, my friend told me that her mother had told her that she may not have grown in her belly like most babies, but she had grown in her heart. I thought that was so beautiful. So I went home and asked my mother if I had grown in her heart. She, not knowing where I was coming from, told me not to be silly, that I was grown from her belly. I really was bummed.

Red in the Flower Bed
is a beautiful story. The story of a flower seed traveling to just the right place, is perfect for a child's understanding. A pre-schooler will love the rhyme, pictures, and story. A child in the primary grades would be able to understand their parent's explanation of God's Divine plan working in the life of this little poppy seed.

You can purchase Red in the Flower Bed, at Tribute Books. I definitely recommend it for adopted children. The author, Andrea Nepa, wrote the book for her daughter. It's perfect for interracial families, like the author's, but everyone will enjoy it. Even adults, like me.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Manga Maniac Cafe review

Manga Maniac Cafe
December 17, 2010

A Look at Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa

by Julie Opipari

Red in the Flower Bed tells the story of a little poppy seed that is sent on a journey to find a new home. The land is too arid for the seed to bloom, so the poppy flower sends her away and the seed sails away on the wind to find a better place to take root. When she sails over a flower bed in a garden, the wind lets her go, releasing her to the earth so she can flourish in the more welcoming environment. As she blossoms into a beautiful red poppy flower, the other flowers in the garden welcome her and the bright splash of color she adds to their lives.

I love the textures of this book. The pages are created with cut-outs and vivid backgrounds that provide a visually arresting book. The narrative is told through rhyme, which isn’t my favorite form of prose, but it works well in the context of this book. The sentences are short and soft, following along as the seed travels to her new home and embracing the diversity of her new family. I liked that the book’s message is subtle, allowing for a wider audience.

Author Andrea Nepa wrote Red in the Flower Bed after adopting her daughter, Leah, from Vietnam.

For an excerpt of the book, click here.

Review materials provided by Tribute Books

The True Book Addict review

The True Book Addict
December 17, 2010

Book Tour: Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa
by Michelle Miller

Red in the Flower Bed is a book written to help children understand adoption, specifically interracial adoption. The seed cannot thrive and survive next to its "mother" so she sends it in the wind to find a place where it can. Eventually, the seed finds a place amongst other flowers, not of its species, but it fits in none the less. The wording is simple, but poetic and would be easy enough even for small children to understand. The illustrations are also simple, but no less beautiful. I recommend this picture book...not only for adopted children, but for all children. It really is a good story showing that it's okay to be different and that you can still fit in.

Tic Toc review

Tic Toc
December 17, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa
by Leslie Wright

Red in the Flower Bed is a insightful and whimsical children’s book creating a fun read with the singsong type of rhyme that makes for an engaging reading process. Andrea Nepa has risen to the challenge of making the confusing and unsettling process of adoption into a story of search and discovery. In a more difficult setting where the adoption is interracial, she has found just the perfect way to help an child feel comfortable in a new place surrounded with differences. This would be insightful with any adoption and not limited to interracial, I believe there is always a bit of that feeling, of not belonging, and this book, takes that difference and shows how all parts make a whole. The story, beginning with the seed being directed and finding just the best and most special place to grow, shows a love and a welcoming that is difficult to miss. The beauty of the new color coming up in a bed full of other colors all different and unique blending into a rainbow shows how each entity is of itself unique and yet a part of the whole, creating a family. I felt the book had a light and genuine touch, making a difficult theme beautiful. You will be charmed by the prose, and the beauty of the concept is well illustrated with beautiful colors and themes, sure to capture the imagination.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Susan Heim on Parenting review

Susan Heim on Parenting
December 16, 2010

Children's Book Review: Red in the Flower Bed, by Andrea Nepa
by Susan Heim

In Red in the Flower Bed: An Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption, by Andrea Nepa, a little poppy seed cannot flourish where she is born because the soil is dry, so the mother flower makes the decision to let the wind carry the seed away to a land where she’ll be able to grow better. The little seed heads west until she lands in a lovely garden of flowers, where she is welcomed warmly by the other flowers, even though she soon begins to grow into a flower that the others don’t recognize. But the red poppy rejoices because she has found a family, and all the flowers make a beautiful and harmonious rainbow of colors!

At first, children reading Red in the Flower Bed may see this book as a sweet story about a seed that grows into a flower, but adults can guide them into realizing that this story is really a metaphor for adopting a child, especially from a different country or race. This story can jumpstart a conversation with any child, adopted or not, about what it means to be adopted, the possible reasons for adoption, and the emotions that are felt by all parties involved in the adoption process.

Spiritual Woman review

Spiritual Woman
December 16, 2010

Book Review: Red in the Flower Bed

by Patrice Fagnant-MacArthur

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa is a children's picture book about interracial adoption. Truly, though, it is a simple beautiful book about not belonging, being different, and finding a place to fit in which could be used in many different situations. It tells of a poppy seed carried by the wind. The seed finds itself in a distant flower bed, filled with roses, marigolds, and violets. The poppy flower grows in the fertile soil and helps complete the perfect rainbow of color. The poppy is exactly where it belongs.

Andrea Nepa is the mother of an adopted Vietnamese daughter named Leah. In 2001, Adoptions from the Heart assisted with the international adoption. Andrea dedicated her book to her daughter: "For my dear Leah, whose journey in her young life has already taken her to far away and unexpected places." In 2006, Leah was diagnosed with cancer. She is currently in remission. Andrea lives with Leah and her husband, David, in Haddonfield, New Jersey. She is a registered dietitian for the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

To find out more, please visit

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Voices for Life review

Voices for Life
December 15, 2010

Book Review: Red in the Flower Bed
by Melanie Small and Tina Mahar

"One day, a seed dropped
From a poppy flower
Onto the earth below.
But it was too dry,
And the poppy began to cry:
“Good-bye little one.
You will be missed you know,
but this is no place for you to grow.”

So she let the wind carry the seed
From east to west
Until they found a place
That was best."

Red in the Flower Bed, is a loving and delightful story written by an adoptive parent, for her daughter. Through poetry and colorful artwork, follow a tiny poppy seed's journey to a new garden bed, where she is nurtured and blossoms into the beautiful flower she was meant to be. Strong and vibrant, she completes her family's garden. Without the beauty of the red poppy flower gracing the other flowers, the garden just wouldn't be the same.

We highly recommend this book for young children to help them understand the meaning of adoption. Parents can snuggle up with there child and share this book in the comfort of a parents' arms. Red in the Flower Bed gently explains the gift of adoption, how much a child is loved even from the moment they were born, and that they are exactly where they are meant to be.

To order your copy, click here. A portion of the purchase will benefit Paul's Kids: Vietnam Children's Charity (

Flying Off the Shelves review

Flying Off the Shelves
December 15, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed

by Beth Sherrard-Maurin

Red In The Flower Bed
By: Andrea Nepa [Website, Facebook]
Paperback: 28 pages
Publisher: Tribute Books (2008) [Facebook]
ISBN: 978-0981461991 (0981461999)
Genre: Children, Education, Adoption
Reading level: Ages 4-8
To Buy from Tribute Books and Amazon
A portion of the book's proceeds benefits Paul's Kids.

The first thing I noticed about this book is the beautiful simplicity of the images. As I started to read my heart absolutely melted. Andrea Nepa did a wonderful job at explaining adoption without actually going into confusing detail. I really appreciated that because I have no background on this topic or how it can be for parents and children. I also love how the poppy (child) found their place in a diverse garden (family) who was happy to welcome her.

Another good thing about this book is that it lends itself to parents or teachers for arts and crafts. I think having an application in the classroom or in the home as a project is important because it helps bring the subject into reality for kids. As a project I would suggest have the kids make flowers of themselves (parents or teachers too!) and bring them all together so the diversity can be seen and appreciated. Overall, I give this book a four and mark it as a must read for adopted children.

Favorite Page
This is the page that best represented this book and the idea behind the book for me.

Cynthia's Attic review

Cynthia's Attic
December 15, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed
by Mary Cunningham

Red In The Flower Bed is a beautifully written and illustrated story about the power of international adoption.

A lone seed, dropped into an inhospitable environment is followed until it reaches a perfect, fertile flower bed where it adds to the beautiful colors of the rainbow.

A perfect book for adoptive families or those considering international or local adoption.

Buy links:
Tribute Books
Book web site

Andrea Nepa Facebook
Tribute Books website
Tribute Books Facebook

Mary Cunningham Books

Palace of Twelve Pillars review

Palace of Twelve Pillars
December 14, 2010

Book Review: Red in the Flower Bed

by Christina Weigand

This is a lovely story for children depicting interracial adoption through the use of metaphor and creative illustrations. Ms. Nepa has done an outstanding job of bringing the message of adoption, interracial or otherwise to the eyes of the children. Besides making them aware that such a thing exists, she also with her unique storytelling ability has explained and reassured those living in that situation along with those that live and play with them.

Adults and children are all well served to read this story and share it with others to get out the message of interracial adoption and all the good things that come with it. We are all flowers in God’s garden and tolerance and acceptance of all the flowers is a lesson that is well learned and Ms. Nepa very succinctly teaches the lesson with this book.

Ms. Nepa gets a five star rating from this reader.

God Bless


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Winterpast Family review

Winterpast Family
December 14, 2010

Book Review - Red in the Flower Bed

by Luanne Mellish

Red in the Flower Bed is a delightfully written and illustrated book that teaches small children about adoption. Author Andrea Nepa has captured in this small tome the beauty of adoption and the beauty of family, using simple language and vibrantly colored pictures to tell the story of a flower seed who finds her way "home" to a new family, where each flower's difference adds to the beauty of the whole bed. A charming story!

Hope. Dreams. Life... Love review

Hope. Dreams. Life... Love
December 14, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed
by Elaine Cantrell

During the month of December my characters have taken over my blog. Elizabeth Lane heroine of Return Engagement is in charge, and her cousin, Nikki Lane, the heroine of The Best Selling Toy Of The Season is her helper.

Nikki: What are you reading, Elizabeth? I’ve spoken to you twice now.

Elizabeth: Oh, sorry. Look at this little book, Nikki.

Nikki: (Looking at the book cover) Red In The Flower Bed. What’s it about?

Elizabeth: It’s so cool! The book is written by Andrea Nepa who adopted a Vietnamese girl called Leah. In 2001, Adoptions from the Heart assisted with the international adoption. Andrea dedicated her book to her daughter: "For my dear Leah, whose journey in her young life has already taken her to far away and unexpected places." In 2006, Leah was diagnosed with cancer, but she is currently in remission. Andrea lives with Leah and her husband, David, in Haddonfield, New Jersey. She’s a registered dietitian for the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

Nikki: Oh thank goodness the little girl is okay!

Elizabeth: You’re right! The book is lovely. Ms. Nepa compares adoption to a poppy seed which is sent away by the poppy flower so that it can grow and thrive in a new garden, and in that new garden the red poppy completes the garden and becomes the red centerpiece.

Nikki: It would make a nice gift for anyone who’s adopted or ever considered adoption. Can we read an excerpt for it?

Elizabeth: Yes, you can read that at

Nikki: That’s awesome! Do you have a link where we can buy the book?

Elizabeth: Sure do. Go to

Nikki: Do you have other links for the book?

Elizabeth: Yes, here they are.

Book web site:

Andrea Nepa Facebook:!/profile.php?id=1664060822

Tribute Books website:

Tribute Books Facebook: Archbald-PA/Tribute-Books/ 171628704176

Tribute Books Twitter: TributeBooks

Nikki: Thanks for sharing the book with me, Elizabeth. It’s really very heartwarming.

Elizabeth: Any time, Nikki. Readers, do check it out. You won’t be disappointed.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Melanie's Musings review

Melanie's Musings
December 13, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Nepa
by Melanie

Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea NepaAdoption is an issue that is very close to my heart, so when Tribute books offered me the chance to be a part of the blog tour for Red in the Flower Bed I was very excited. This is my first review of a children’s book, but I don’t think it will be my last!

This book is a story about interracial adoption. It’s nicely done, and it made me smile. However, for children I think the metaphors would have to be explained before they could fully understand what the storyline means. I know that I would have needed it explained if I had read this book while being its target age group.

The illustrations were quite pretty and added a lot to the story. This is a book I would definitely recommend to all. I think it would help adopted children understand a completely life altering event in their lives, and I also think it would give other children a basic understanding of the process as well.

Writings from the Tub review

Writings from the Tub
December 13, 2010

Blog Tour: Red in the Flower Bed - Andrea Nepa
by Carly Bennett

Here at Writing from the Tub I do like to try and be diverse as possible with the books I read and review, though my preferences are firmly rooted in contemporary YA I always like to try new things and broaden my horizons. Red in the Flower Bed is definitely not my typical pick but I’m so glad Tribute approached me to be part of the blog tour as I fell in love with the story Nepa tells in her book.

Red in the Flower Bed is short but very, very sweet and you won’t be able to make it through without breaking into a soppy smile, I promise. I’m not adopted myself but I imagine younger adopted children who are going through a confusing time could take great comfort in this story.

The imagery used is great – accessible to both adults and children and the writing is superb, simple enough that it isn’t daunting at all for young readers but complicated enough that the language doesn’t come across as patronizing. This is a great book that could be shared with the whole family and I really did enjoy it, perfect for lifting my mood on this horrible grey day!

Plot: 5/5
Writing: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Cover: 3/5 Total: 16/20 (B+)

The Freebie Junkie review

The Freebie Junkie
December 13, 2010

Book Review: Red in the Flower Bed: An Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption
by Angela Walker

We're blessed with two biological children but I always think if at some point in our lives whether we can adopt. If we were not able to have children of our own there would be no doubt that I would adopt although I know from friends adoption is a long, expensive and draining drawn out process but definitely with wonderful experience and outcome after all said and done.

When Tribute Books approached me to review Red in the Flower Bed, I said yes immediately as this would be a book that I could read with my children. Red in the Flower Bed by Andrea Napa is an illustrated story book about interracial adoption. The journey of adoption is beautifully depicted with the comforting imagery of a poppy flower seed who is sent to a new place to flourish and is welcomed into a garden family of other flowers. We enjoyed this simple yet meaningful story with homespun complementary illustrations. I took the time to explain the words and the pictures since it is written in way that there is not a direct link to interracial adoption as such. You can take this story to new levels depending on your home situation and age of your children.


Purchase Red in the Flower Bed here for $11.65 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25.

Saving Obsession review

Saving Obsession
December 12, 2010

Red in the Flower Bed Children's Book on Interracial Adoption: A Review
by Micael Givens

"Red in the Flower Bed" by Andrea Nepa is a darling story about interracial adoption. When I first learned that I was going to be able to do this review I immediately thought of my friend Meghan, her sister Emily and their family's story of adoption from Africa. With that I began to read.

"Red in the Flower Bed" is the journey of a poppy seed traveling far from home but landing exactly where she needed to be. This story is perfect for those families who have had the blessing to adopt. It handles what can be a difficult topic for some, in a very gentle, loving way.

The images and illustrations are brilliant. I love its bright colors too.

I also think that just from the human point of view, this story is great to show children, adopted or not, that we can all be different but be happy together all the same. I highly recommend this book for anyone with kids, but especially those who have gone through the adoption process.

You can read a little snippet from the book, purchase directly from Tribute Books, or purchase on Amazon.