Penny Parkes, 2021
Anna Wilson is a professional housesitter. She steps into people’s lives watching their houses, pets and occasionally their neighbors.
All she really wants is a home of her own. One filled with love and laughter and happy memories. She grew up in foster care so she doesn’t have a baseline to tell her how to find her own happily ever after. She has some wonderful friends who are trying very hard to help her find a home.
Since she grew up in foster care, she always envied her friends and their carefree secure lives. Those friends did become Anna’s family by choice, but she is still stuck in her nomadic lifestyle. She doesn’t even realize that she is looking for answers and wanting to put down roots until one of her good friends helps her understand her feelings.
As she moves around, she makes friends that seem like they could become family, but will she let them in?
I was raised in a home that took in foster children, so this book resonated with me. Usually I don’t like books about foster care because it includes abuse stories. Most of the books I’ve tried to read about foster care are true stories. Since this one is a novel, it left out the worst details of why Anna was in foster care. I’m not sure why I don’t like reading about that all, but it is just too depressing having seen it up close and personal.
Since we have two children now I can so easily see how a broken home could have a very negative impact on our family. I am so thankful for our culture and how nurturing it is for children.
But I digress. The book was very good and Anna did find some answers before the book was over. I would like to know what your thoughts are on foster care in general and stories with abuse in particular? Which books have you liked? I’m certainly not promising to read them, but I am curious about your books!
4 responses to “Home”
Perhaps I’m an ostrich but I don’t care to read books about abuse. If it’s a real life happening to one of my real life friends I can help them, but I want my reading to be for relaxation. And abuse details are not relaxing.
There are no details in this one. It only talks about her being in foster care and you know some things went on that shouldn’t have, but no details. It talks a lot about the people she chose as her family and how they helped her in her adult life. It was a good story.
Since spending a year taking care of Navajo children, foster care & how trauma affects the brain are both things that highly interest me. We live in a county with most foster kiddos cared for out of county due to not enough foster homes. (I think last September there were only 2 kids cared for in the county & 80 plus out of county.) Foster care with the goal of reunification seems like a high calling. Now is not the season for us & who knows, it may never be.
Do you really want my long list of books? 😉 I guess I read a lot of your book suggestions so it’s only fair to share some of them…
One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt
The Chestry Oak by Kate Seredy
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson is also on my foster (goodreads) list. I think I need to read it again because I don’t remember why it’s there.
And here’s one to avoid if you don’t like to read about trauma…The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog by Bruce Perry. But it is also beautiful because it tells how healing can & does happen with the right people & circumstances.
Joni, thank you for that list! Some of them look very interesting. I think your problem of not having enough foster parents is a universal one. We were with a family last night who have been foster parents for decades. They are in their 60s and have a 4-month-old baby girl right now. Talk about ambition. I’m 20 years younger than that and think it looks daunting.