âThe saddest thing is when our stories die with us.â - Lisa Wingate, author of Before We Were Yours
This amazing non-fiction book is a collection of stories from adoptees of the Tennessee Children's Home Society (TCHS) as told to Judy Christie, as well as the origin story of a weekend reunion for TCSH survivors.
Much of America learned about the evils of Georgia Tann and her TCHS by reading the fictional novel Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate. From the 1920s to 1950, Tann took infants, toddlers, and children from poor uneducated families and sold them to families primarily in California and New York who desperately wanted a child but couldn't adopt through traditional channels due to age and other factors.
This book is heartbreaking, challenging, and inspiring as readers learn the origin stories of several adoptees and accounts of their lives with their adoptive parents. The actions led by one ruthless person (Georgia Tann) impacted 5,000 children and countless birth parents, birth siblings and other family members, adoptive parents, adoptive siblings and family members, and generations of families.
I recommend reading Before We Were Yours and additional historical accounts of Tann and the TCHS in conjunction with Before and After.
Judy D. - , reviewed Before and After: The Incredible Real-Life Stories of Orphans Who Survived the Tennessee Children's Home Society on + 388 more book reviews
Before and After by Judy Christie and Lisa Wingate
Before We Were Yours became more than just a bestseller. It became a life changer. It took a real situationâGeorgia Tann and the Tennessee Children's Home Societyâand put fictional faces on the children to tell a story of what could have been. Families are torn apart so this evil woman could profit from it. Commodities to be bought...and returned if they didn't fit right.
Before and After takes it a step further and puts the real faces on the true story. Some with happy endings...many without. This book records those stories from those now-adult children. Many have always known they didn't quite âfit inâ and that something was missing.
This book brings those adults who are able back to Memphis for a reunion. They can meet other âsurvivorsâ and tell their stories. I found it hard to put the book down. In my case, I also needed tissues handy. Georgia Tann was a greedy woman, she didn't care who she destroyed to get rich. Yes, many of the children had good lives...but the cost was high. I highly recommend this book and if you haven't read Before We Were Yours, I suggest reading it first.
**Received a copy from the publisher for an honest review