Are you working with adopted children, thinking about adopting or already done so? If so, this book is like having a good and knowledgeable adoption worker on your bookshelf. It does not assume prior knowledge so can at times be simplistic but that makes it accessible to all.
The opening chapters set the scene with introductions to different concepts birth families, handling and getting information and adopters’ feelings. It goes on to cover how to address difficult histories, memories, siblings, foster and step-parent adoption. A chapter on tracing birthparents covers this emotive topic in a sensitive and practical way. I found the quotes from adopters and children powerful and there were good illustrations of the different stages of the process.
The reader can pick and choose a topic without having to read it from cover to cover, and I found this really useful with the chapters that weren’t relevant to me but which had interesting information. The “What is A Parent?” section was useful and could be adapted to help all young children understand their changing situations.
The “useful books section” is invaluable, with a synopsis for each entry so you can decide if it will be of benefit. Having a list of useful organisations completes the resources in this very accessible book. Every one considering adoption should read this.
Merle Fletcher is an adopter and social work tutor, University of Huddersfield