Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Non-Fiction
Just Add One Chinese Sister: An Adoption Story

Just Add One Chinese Sister: An Adoption Story

Spring 2005 Non-Fiction
Ages: 5 - 8 yrs.
Author: Patricia McMahon
Author: Conor Clarke McCarthy
Illustrator: Karen Jerome
ISBN: 1-56397-989-6
Hardcover Price: $16.95
Using the devise of preparing a scrapbook for the adopted little girl from China, the mother, who narrates in the first person, goes all the way back to the decision to adopt. The family has a son, Conor, but they don't feel complete. They also want a daughter, so they begin the adoption process from China. The mother has kept mementos of this process and explains the significance of the various items and pictures to the child, now older, sitting in her lap. On the far right of each double-page spread are entries from Conor's journal about adopting the little girl he named Claire. From the time the family receives a picture of a worried- looking baby, through the frightening experience for Claire, who was handed to complete strangers, until her first laugh at Conor, the family gradually becomes complete.

With double-page spreads with scattered pictures of events and photographs, the book does have the feeling of a scrapbook. The warm watercolor illustrations lovingly depict the metamorphosis of a child without a family, who lived in a home for children, into a child with a family and a home of her own.

Kemie Nix   ©2005 Parents' Choice
Kemie Nix is Chairman of Children's Literature for Children (CLC), a non-profit, tax-exempt, educational organization dedicated to bringing children and books together. Mrs. Nix, a senior book editor for Parents' Choice, has a remarkable sense of selecting books children love to read.

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