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Snowflakes: A Flurry of Adoption Stories

Edited by Teresa Kelleher, with Katie Flake and Paul Kelleher-Smith $20; Tender Loving Communications

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 Adopted children, their siblings and friends, parents, grandparents, and family members share their points of view on adoption, family, and relationships in this satisfying collection of essays.

The book is divided into four sections: stories by young adoptees; teens’ stories; stories for new and prospective parents; and stories from families who successfully adopted older children and children with special needs. Children of all ages, adopted domestically and from abroad, as infants and as older kids, share a range of experiences, from meeting new siblings to missing birth family. Six-year-old Gayla, from Russia, embraces her new life within hours of arriving home in New York, and describes her early family life as empty and neglectful. Her mom, Leslie, says, “It is so easy to forget that she isn’t my own flesh and blood.”

The adoptees’ points of view—the soul of Snowflakes—offer glimpses of lives before, during, and after adoption. The stories they tell, and the advice they offer, resonate. Loss, anger, sadness, vigilance, fear, joy—these themes are most powerful when they are expressed by children.

During my childhood, adoption, and the time before my parents and sister adopted me, was never really talked about. We were a family, and, for the most part, we were happy. But I grew up with many unanswered questions. Would more adoption conversations—and a resource like Snowflakes—have changed that? I believe so.

This is a powerful read for anyone touched by adoption. Try sharing a story or two with your child. Your voice, and the voice of these adoptees, will let her know that she’s not alone.

Reviewed by JUDY FRIST (a pseudonym), an adult adoptee residing in Connecticut.

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