July 2015 Book Reviews

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All books purchased by clicking the link in our review will give AFTH a small donation from Amazon.com.  If you are interested in purchasing one of the books in our review please consider buying it through our link to amazon.com.

Joy of adoptionChicken Soup for the Soul: The Joy of Adoption: 101 Stories about Forever Families and Meant-to-Be Kids by Amy Newmark & LeAnn Thieman – The book is filled with short stories about the joy of adoption.  It does not talk about the whole process, it does not touch on all the steps, frustrations or pitfalls, it only focuses on the positive aspects of adoption.  This is a good book to help you see the light in adoption, by focusing on the positive aspects, joys and celebration of adoption it doesn’t give you an accurate picture of adoption but it might be a nice gift for someone who is just starting the process, just finished the process or somewhere in between who wants to remember the joy that adoption does bring. It has a strong religious slant as all the Chicken Soup for the Soul books do. amazon.com price (PB) $11.76 (Kindle) $9.99

How I was AdoptedHow I Was Adopted (Mulberry Books) by Joanna Cole – This is a cute childrens book with adorable bright pictures.  This is not only a story about adoption but also about birth, telling the story of how Sam grew in another woman’s uterus and then after she was born was placed for adoption.  Along the way the book asks questions that can spur conversation about a child’s own adoption.  It is a nice way to talk about how everyone’s story is different.  There is a nice mix of diversity in the pages and the story talks about how there are special things that came from her birth parents and special things that she got from her parents.  This book would be a nice addition to any library. amazon.com price (PB) $6.99 (HC) from $.01

Giving up BabyGiving Up Baby: Safe Haven Laws, Motherhood, and Reproductive Justice by Laury Oaks – Laury Oaks is not an advocate of Safe Haven laws.  She looks at them from what she calls a “reproductive rights” perspective. The problem, she feels is that they put the focus solely on the infant and disregard the wellness of the mother.

She thinks that while well-meaning, the laws reinforce the idea that some mothers are “bad” and should give up their children so that “good” parents can raise them.  Oaks believes that a better use of resources would be to invest in programs that lift up disadvantaged mothers. “Safe Haven laws are not the only thing we should be looking at. I think our job as a society is to say, ‘How can we make it so that women and men and extended families aren’t so resource poor?’”

While this is a new perspective it isn’t new to many countries around the world.  Finland gives a “baby box” to all new parents that contains clothes and diapers that the child could use for up to a year, the box itself doubles as a crib. While not a total fix for the problem it certainly helps.

While I am not a fan of Safe Haven laws for other reasons this book gives you a new perspective and an interesting take on a continuing problem.  Is there a way for the government to help new parents find the resources they need to raise their children? Or is there a better way than encouraging women to abandon their children instead of promoting other alternatives? This is a very informative book that could really spark some good discussion and debate. amazon.com price (PB)$21.60 (Kindle) $20.52

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