Monday, January 22, 2007

A Brief Chapter in My Impossible Life

Reinhardt, Dana. 2006. A BRIEF CHAPTER IN MY IMPOSSIBLE LIFE. New York: Random House. ISBN 0385746989 [Suggested Grade Levels 9-12]

Simone’s life is that of a typical teenager. She has a crush on a great guy who, of course, spends all of his time with a girl he claims is just a friend. Her best friend has a boyfriend that consumes all of her time and thoughts. Her younger brother, a freshman at the same school, is growing up and growing cooler than she is. But one difference between Simone’s life and other teenagers is the fact that she is adopted. Her parents never kept her adoption a secret, but it is not something Simone has ever dwelt on. Though she looks different than her parents and brother, they are her family and she is content in this family. However, a call from her birth mother Rivka forces Simone to address the issue of her adoption and whether or not she wants to meet the woman who gave her up sixteen years ago.

What follows is a period of Simone’s life in which she learns about love, trust, acceptance, and what it means to be a daughter; a time that causes her to question her atheistic views and ponder faith and the existence of God. Simone’s openness and honesty about everything from the mundane to life-changing decisions makes her accessible to readers. Dana Reinhardt beautifully captures the heart and essence of this teenage girl.

Simone’s birth mother Rivka is Jewish and throughout the book Simone learns more about Jewish customs and traditions. Encourage readers to pick a religion they are unfamiliar with and learn more about the religion.

Other novels about adoption:
Bongiorno, Patti. TANGLED HEARTS. ISBN 0971581916
Casselman, Grace. A WALK IN THE PARK. ISBN 1894917197

By Mary D. Buckalo

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