Book Reviews of The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade

The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade
The Girls Who Went Away The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v Wade
Author: Ann Fessler
ISBN-13: 9781594200946
ISBN-10: 1594200947
Publication Date: 5/4/2006
Pages: 352
Rating:
  • Currently 4.4/5 Stars.
 37

4.4 stars, based on 37 ratings
Publisher: Penguin Press HC, The
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

8 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on + 336 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
VERY good book! I searched for this a few years ago after seeing a review in BookPage and was amazed at what these women were forced to go through. Fessler did an amazing job at driving home what these women went through and I am so happy I took the time to read it. I'd definitely recommend for anyone interested in adoption, the right of women, etc.
reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on + 39 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
---- Warning: person opinions included. No offense intended, I'm just puzzled. ----

Very interesting book, but I'm still puzzled about the title. The stories about women who surrendered children for adoption, feeling they had no other choice, were very sad and I learned a lot about their experiences and feelings. But I'm not sure what it has to do with Roe v. Wade. The book doesn't discuss abortion, except to say that it wasn't an option for most women during the time period written about. I can't imagine that anyone would feel that abortion is a better choice for many of the young women in the book. Most were well along in the pregnancy before they admitted to themselves or their families that they were pregnant. Others, who at first expected to keep their babies and get married, would not have considered abortion. Many were Catholic and ended up at Catholic maternity homes. Even if abortion had been legal back then I can't imagine many of them would have chosen it as an option. Or is the idea that after Roe v. Wade these young women who were convinced by their parents, doctors & priests to surrender their baby for adoption, would have been convinced to have an abortion instead?

Is the premise that once abortion became legal these unwed, young women would have had abortions instead of adoptions and saved themselves from the years of grief that they experienced? If that's the assumption, I want to see the book about how some women experience years of grief, guilt and pain due to the decision to have an abortion in the years since Roe v. Wade. I guess I'm feeling that the title suggests that Roe v. Wade offered a better solution and I just don't believe that is true. Still, it's a fascinating book that I am glad I took the time to read. I very much agree with many of the women's suggestions that young moms can be good moms if they are given the support that they need to do so.
reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on + 384 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
For those of us of "a certain age" this book is an emotional roller coaster.we all knew someone who was sent away and returned a few months later being told to forget about the baby. they had no choice,they were told what to do.that was give up the baby for adoption and never speak of it again.
for those of us younger,this book will describe and appall you. you only know the life choices available today.
i believe this book would have been better served if the editor had used their red pen more as it became a little repatative near the end.
reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on + 25 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
A very interesting book-I look at adoption in a whole different light now.
reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on
Helpful Score: 1
True stories about the women who were forced to give up babies for adoption prior to legalized abortion. It tells of the pain they suffered, the hopes of being reunited, and emotions of finding their child years later.
The author did a wonderful job of framing the stories by detailing a social or cultural aspect of giving a child up.

Should be required reading for any woman under the age of 40.
reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on + 66 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Eye opening account of what many young women went through before Roe v Wade
reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on
Helpful Score: 1
I absolutely loved and enjoyed this book, from front to cover - and it's hard for me to stay interested in a book. I read it over the course of about 3 months and every time I picked it back up, I got back into it.

The author did an extraordinary job of researching, personal stories and just the way society was back then - which lead to millions of adoptions all because of pressure... Amazing book - I suggest this to every one - including my husband :)

PS: THIS BOOK HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH ABORTION (OR ROE VS. WADE DEBATE)
reviewed The Girls Who Went Away : The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe v. Wade on + 4 more book reviews
One of the best nonfiction books I've ever read.