Before We Were Yours

Before We Were Yours

A Novel

Book - 2017
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Born into a world of wealth and privilege, Avery Stafford seems to have it all. A loving daughter to her father, a U.S. Senator, with her own ambitious career as a lawyer and a handsome fiancé waiting for her in Baltimore, she has lived a charmed life. But when Avery returns to Aiken to help her father weather a health crisis and a political attack, a chance encounter with May Bonher, an elderly woman she's never met before, leaves Avery deeply shaken. Avery's decision to learn more about May's life will take her on a journey through her family's long-hidden history, illuminating the heart of Avery's story. Based on the true story of a system of orphanages that was ultimately deemed responsible for the kidnapping and selling of thousands of children in illegal adoptions, in this story Wingate has created a riveting, heart-wrenching read.
Publisher: New York :, Ballantine Books,, [2017]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ♭2017
ISBN: 9780425284681
0425284689
Characteristics: 342 pages

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c
crazy_librarian
Dec 04, 2019

Before we were yours is a well written fiction book about a disturbing event in US history. The characters were real and the book left me wanting to know more. I found myself researching the actual events in history. Few books pull me in and leave me wanting to know more.

a
ArleneR_0
Nov 22, 2019

This was such a great book...very well written...had a hard time putting the book down.

mazinwhistler Oct 29, 2019

So I will be honest that the cover of this book did not appeal to me at all (I think it is the font that title is in) and for this reason I nearly didn't bother with it but a colleague had recommended it so I decided to give it a go. And, boy I am so glad I did. This book is amazing! Wingate has a delightful way with words and the story, whilst fiction is based on her research regarding the topic. If you are in for a tearjerker this is the book for you!

FPL_John Oct 28, 2019

This was a very moving book. Although fiction, it's based on actual events. From the beginning you think you know what's going on, but as the book proceeds you realize that there is much more going on than you realize. This is a chapter in our history that doesn't make it into the textbooks, but I was fascinated. I had no idea that all these things had happened. The book is well written and the story is engrossing.

e
ednabw
Oct 21, 2019

Years ago, our book club read a book about children that were taken from women and families who were arrested as dissidents in Argentina during the 1970s and 1980s and given to childless military or wealthy pro-government couples. We were all horrified. Now, we know that even without a “militant” or fascist government, this was going on in the U.S. which makes it more shocking because it happened right under our noses and, with the approval of so many active community elders. Lisa Wingate writes a heartbreaking but valuable story about an ugly part of our culture and community. Excellent book discussion book.

j
janetkabatoff
Sep 23, 2019

Great story. Four children living on a shanty boat are taken from their parents and put into an orphanage to be sold to rich clients. Abuse and tearing family apart. Current times cross paths with the past.

s
susan_findlay
Sep 04, 2019

This book reminded me of The House Girl. So much so that I had to go and look it up to check if they were written by the same author. They're not.

Both books alternate chapters between a really compelling story from the past and a modern day character who is somehow tied to the historical story. In both cases, the modern day character adds very little to the overall story apart from making you wish you could get to the next chapter already to get back to the good parts.

I liked this book, but I'd have liked it more without so much intrusion from the present.

t
theat
Aug 28, 2019

A simply fantastic novel. The writer (Lisa Wingate) moves the story between past and present, creating great story tension so you can hardly wait to get from one to the other and to try and figure out the connections between the two time periods. It's a story, both sad and uplifting at the same time with so many nooks and crannies of left out story, that it feels all the more real. Nothing in real life ever works out completely. There are always so many unresolved issues -as is true with this novel. I read tons of mysteries and thrillers - this story will hold your attention with the best of them.

p
PDBurt
Aug 13, 2019

The story looked good but wasn't; too much back and forth between past and present.

t
Tica77
Jul 22, 2019

This novel is a gem. Based on the true story of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society and it’s wicked director Georgia Tann, the fictitious characters created by the author come to life in a story of love, challenge and family secrets. Alternating between present day and 1939, you gradually discover how Avery Stafford, born and raised in a family of wealth and politics, discovers who her great-grandparents were. You also learn about the life on Shantyboats on the Mississippi and one of the families living aboard the Arcadia. The author also makes the reader aware that in some prominent families, the truth is not always sought out. The main protagonist, Rill Foss, is an endearing character. Excellent book.

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Quotes

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XueyingMou
Jun 17, 2019

"No matter how much we may love the melody of a bygone day or imagine the song of a future one, we must dance within the music of today, or we will always be out of step, stumbling around in something that doesn't suit the moment."

c
cknightkc
Oct 12, 2018

“We plan our days, but we don’t control them.” - p. 95

c
cknightkc
Oct 12, 2018

“The argument ends where all arguments do—on the altar of compromise.” - p. 255

c
cknightkc
Oct 12, 2018

“I learned that you need not be born into a family to be loved by one.” - p. 314

c
cknightkc
Oct 12, 2018

“A woman’s past need not predict her future. She can dance to new music if she
chooses. Her own music. - p. 317

ArapahoeMaryA Jun 13, 2017

I clench my teeth so hard the pain travels all the way to the top of my head. I'm glad for it - it's just a little ache and I know where it comes from. I can stop it anytime I want. The one in my heart is way bigger. I can't fix it no matter how hard I try. It scares me so much that I can't even breathe.

"…the love of sisters needs no words. It does not depend on memories, or mementos or proof. It runs as deep as a heartbeat; it is as ever present as a pulse.

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Mya614
Jan 20, 2018

Mya614 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

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BRUCE PILCHER
Sep 26, 2017

BRUCE PILCHER thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

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