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Mommy Far, Mommy Near

An Adoption Story

By Carol Antoinette Peacock

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Reviewer: Allison Martin

Mommy Far, Mommy Near - An Adoption Story is a wonderful book for parents to share with their children to explore adoption together. A young Asian girl of elementary school age learns that being adopted means having two mothers - one remaining in China and one "here". Carol Peacock's deft writing and Shawn Brownell's soft illustrations convey a tenderness that is heartwarming, even as Mommy Far, Mommy Near raises emotional and crucial issues around adoption, abandonment, and differences.

Elizabeth does cartwheels, makes popcorn and climbs trees - she is also an adoptee from China with a Caucasian mother and father. Seeing a Chinese family on the playground, talking about their dog's "adoption", and pretend calls on the phone to her birthmother, are some of the experiences in which she starts to understand about her own adoption. Through it all Elizabeth and her mother have a close bond with rituals of endearment which cement their warm relationship.

While this book is written for children adopted from China - for example, the one child policy is used to "explain" Elizabeth's adoption - parents can use this book for discussion of adoption from other Asian countries. The issues and experiences are universal. This is a touching book - be prepared for tears in your eyes when you read it.

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