Books About Birth Families


Adoption Healing: A Path to Recovery--Articles, etc.
by Joe Soll, LCSW
This addition to the Adoption Healing series is a compilation of all the articles that I have been asked to write in the last year, plus more than a half

Adoption Healing: A Path to Recovery for Mothers Who Lost Children to Adoption
by Joe Soll, CSW, and Karen Wilson Buterbaugh
The reader is provided with a description of the immaculate deception imposed on pregnant women and the ensuing tragedy of the loss of their babies to adoption and the profound

Adoption Reunion in the Social Media Age
Edited by Laura Dennis
This anthology gives voice to the wide experiences of adoptees and those who love them; examining the emotional, psychological and logistical effects of adoption reunion. Primarily adult adoptee voices, we

The Adoption Reunion Survival Guide: Preparing Yourself for the Search, Reunion, and Beyond
by Julie Jarrell Bailey and Lynn N. Giddens, M.A.
This book is written by two adoption specialists, one of whom is a reunited birthmother, and draws on the real-life experiences of others to help readers prepare for the emotional

The Adoption Triangle (reissue)
by Arthur D. Sorosky, M.D., Annette Baran, M.S.W., and Reuben Pannor, M.S.W.
A classic and the first to deal with how sealed and open records affect adoptees, birth parents and adoptive parents. Originally published in 1978," ... it is as true and

Adoptionland: From Orphans to Activists
Edited by Janine Myung Ja, Michael Allen Potter, and Allen L. Vance
This anthology begins with personal accounts and then shifts to a bird’s eye view on adoption from domestic, intercountry and transracial adoptees who are now adoptee rights activists. Along with

The Book of Sarahs: A Family in Parts
by Catherine E. McKinley
Catherine McKinley was one of only a few thousand African American and bi-racial children adopted by white couples in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Raised in a small, white

The Child Catchers: Rescue, Trafficking, and the New Gospel of Adoption
by Kathryn Joyce
Adoption has long been enmeshed in the politics of reproductive rights, pitched as a “win-win” compromise in the never-ending abortion debate. But as Kathryn Joyce makes clear in The Child

The Family of Adoption: Completely Revised and Updated
by Joyce Maguire Pavao
Full of wonderful stories that give insight into a wide variety of adoption issues, now revised in light of recent developments, The Family of Adoption is a powerful argument for

The Fifth and Final Name: Memoir of an American Churchill
by Rhonda Noonan
In a family memoir that reads like a detective novel, Rhonda Noonan recounts her thirty-year quest to find the truth of her own background--and what she uncovered will surprise readers

A Ghost at Heart's Edge: Stories and Poems of Adoption
Edited by Susan Ito and Tina Cervin
Sixty short stories and poems reveal the sometimes heartbreaking, often affirming tales of adoption. Written from the point of view of birth parents, adoptive parents, and adoptees, this unique anthology

The Girls Who Went Away: The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade
by Ann Fessler
In this deeply moving and myth-shattering work, Ann Fessler brings out into the open for the first time the astonishing untold history of the million and a half women who

Guide to DNA Testing: How to Identify Ancestors, Confirm Relationships, and Measure Ethnic Ancestry through DNA Testing
by Richard Hill
The price of some powerful new genetic genealogy tests has dropped below $100. Genealogists and adoptees are using them and other DNA tests to identify ancestors, confirm relationships, and measure

Heartlines: The Year I Met My Other Mother
by Susannah McFarlane and Robin Leuba
In 1965, Robin, unmarried and pregnant, comes to Melbourne to give birth and give her baby up for adoption, then returns to Perth to resume her life having never seen

I Wish for You a Beautiful Life: Letters from the Korean Birth Mothers of Ae Ran Won to Their Children
Edited by Sara Dorow
A collection of anonymous letters written by Korean birth mothers to the children they relinquished for adoption. The mothers were helped by the Ae Ran Won agency in Seoul, Korea,

Identical Strangers: A Memoir of Twins Separated and Reunited
by Elyse Schein and Paula Bernstein
Elyse Schein had always known she was adopted, but it wasn’t until her mid-thirties while living in Paris that she searched for her biological mother. What she found instead was

It's Not About You: Understanding Adoptee Search, Reunion, and Open Adoption
Edited by Brooke Randolph, MA, NCC, LMHC
The title of this book can be both inflammatory and comforting; different people need to read it different ways. The reality is that the desire for information has nothing to

Lost and Found: The Adoption Experience (3rd edition)
by Betty Jean Lifton
The first edition of Betty Jean Lifton's Lost and Found advanced the adoption rights movement in this country in 1979, challenging many states' policies of maintaining closed birth records. For

Message from an Unknown Chinese Mother: Stories of Loss and Love
by Xinran (translated from Chinese by Nicky Harman)
Following her internationally bestselling book The Good Women of China, Xinran has written one of the most powerful accounts of the lives of Chinese women. She has gained entrance to

My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me: A Black Woman Discovers Her Family's Nazi Past
by Jennifer Teege and Nikola Sellmair (translated by Carolin Sommer)
This is the extraordinary and moving memoir of a woman who learns that her grandfather was Amon Goeth, the brutal Nazi commandant depicted in Schindler's List. When Jennifer Teege, a

Prison Baby: A Memoir
by Deborah Jiang-Stein
Even at twelve years old Deborah Jiang-Stein, the adopted daughter of a progressive Jewish couple in Seattle, felt like an outsider. Her multiracial features set her apart from her well-intentioned

Reading Adoption: Family and Difference in Fiction and Drama
by Marianne Novy
Explores the ways in which novels and plays portray adoption, probing the cultural fictions that these literary representations have perpetuated. Through careful readings of works by Sophocles, Shakespeare, George Eliot,

Reunions in Spring: Meditations for a Holiday Table--Adoption Search & Families
by Suzanne Gilbert
Reunions in Spring: Meditations for a Holiday Table--Adoption Search & Families is based on civilization's oldest adoption memoir: the book of Exodus. It enjoys a lively retelling every spring through

Reunited: An Investigative Genealogist Unlocks Some of Life's Greatest Family Mysteries
by Pamela Slaton (with Samantha Marshall)
In this poignant and heartwarming narrative, renowned genealogist Pamela Slaton tells the most striking stories from her incredibly successful career of reconnecting adoptees with long-lost birth parents. After a traumatic

Saving Grace: A Story of Adoption
by L.B. Johnson
It started with a piece of paper--a birth certificate, sent to the author's parents long after her birth. There is much history in that piece of paper. For she was

She Named You Donna
by Julie Kerton
It's a January morning in 1976; Julie rips the hospital bracelet from her wrist and throws it across the room. As it lands, she doesn't know that the sound will

Silent Voices
by Carlynne Hershberger
The story of adoption is seldom told from the natural mother's point of view. Eleven full color paintings with narrative poetry tell a story of loss, longing, power, powerlessness, surrender,

Somebody Else's Daughter
by Elizabeth Brundage
In the idyllic Berkshires, at the prestigious Pioneer School, there are dark secrets that threaten to come to light. Willa Golding, a student, has been brought up by her adoptive

Songs of My Families: A Thirty-Seven-Year Odyssey from Korea to America and Back
by Kelly Fern with Brad Fern
In 1971, Lee Myonghi, aged five, was taken from her family and placed in a Korean orphanage. Six months later, she was flown to the United States, where she and

Split at the Root: A Memoir of Love and Lost Identity
by Catana Tully
In this memoir, the author explores questions of race, adoption, and identity, not as the professor of cultural studies she became, but as the Black child of German settlers in

The Swan Garden
by Anne Biggs
The Swan Garden tells the story of a young woman who survives a brutal assault and rape, gives birth in a mother baby home, and the abuse she receives in the Magdalene Laundry.

To Save the Children of Korea: The Cold War Origins of International Adoption
by Arissa H. Oh
To Save the Children of Korea is the first book about the origins and history of international adoption. Although it has become a commonplace practice in the United States, we

Too Afraid To Cry
by Ali Cobby Eckermann
In Too Afraid to Cry, Ali Cobby Eckermann―who was recently awarded the Windham-Campbell Prize, one of the most prestigious literary awards in the world―describes with searing detail the devastating effects of

Two Peas In A Separated Pod: A True Story of Adoption
by Jeannie Lachman and Carole Sanguedolce
Take a journey with two women on the road to discoveries and realizations. Jeannie and Carole write about their lives growing up. Each is unaware of the other. Jeannie is

You Remind Me of Me
by Dan Chaon
You Remind Me of Me begins with a series of separate incidents: In 1977, a little boy is savagely attacked by his mother’s pet Doberman; in 1997 another little boy