Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

About the book:

Two families, generations apart, are forever changed by a heartbreaking injustice in this poignant novel, inspired by a true story, for readers of Orphan Train and The Nightingale.

Memphis, 1939. Twelve-year-old Rill Foss and her four younger siblings live a magical life aboard their family’s Mississippi River shantyboat. But when their father must rush their mother to the hospital one stormy night, Rill is left in charge—until strangers arrive in force. Wrenched from all that is familiar and thrown into a Tennessee Children’s Home Society orphanage, the Foss children are assured that they will soon be returned to their parents—but they quickly realize that the truth is much darker. At the mercy of the facility’s cruel director, Rill fights to keep her sisters and brother together—in a world of danger and uncertainty.

Aiken, South Carolina, present day. Born into wealth and privilege, Avery Stafford seems to have it all: a successful career as a federal prosecutor, a handsome fiancĂ©, and a lavish wedding on the horizon. But when Avery returns home to help her father weather a health crisis, a chance encounter leaves her with uncomfortable questions—and compels her to take a journey through her family's long-hidden history, on a path that will ultimately lead either to devastation . . . or redemption.

Based on one of America’s most notorious real-life scandals—in which Georgia Tann, director of a Memphis-based adoption organization, kidnapped and sold poor children to wealthy families all over the country—Wingate’s riveting, wrenching, and ultimately uplifting tale reminds us how, even though the paths we take can lead to many places, the heart never forgets where we belong.

About Lisa:

Lisa Wingate is a former journalist, an inspirational speaker, and the bestselling author of more than twenty novels. Her work has won or been nominated for many awards, including the Pat Conroy Southern Book Prize, the Oklahoma Book Award, the Utah Library Award, the Carol Award, the Christy Award, and the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award. Her work was honored by the Americans for More Civility for promoting greater kindness and civility in American life. Lisa and her family live among the tall pines in the Ouichita Mountains.

My Thoughts:

I have been a fan of Ms. Wingate's writing since I picked up one of her first books, and I look forward to the next one. When I saw the cover of her new book show up on Facebook I was immediately pulled to it and I jumped over to NetGalley to request a copy, and I was pleasantly surprised when I was approved. As I began the book I was immediately pulled into the story of the Foss children, and when I found out this story was loosely based on real life historical facts I became enthralled with it. I think I read it in two days. Being adopted this story evoked all my emotions. I cried, laughed, cheered, wanted to throw the book against the wall, thankfully it was on my kindle. I began searching Google for Georgia Tann and was utterly shocked at what I learned about this evil woman who stole children and sold them. I had always wondered how crazy Joan Crawford had been allowed to adopt children and boy did I found out. As I write this I am still experiencing the emotion from this book. I love when a book grips you and just won't let go. I have dreamt about these characters and I found myself praying for them as I read. I hate to jump the gun, but this will probably be my most favored book of 2017. This is a powerful book that will take you back into history, and it is a must read! I can't recommend this book enough!


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