My brother gave me a gift certificate to Amazon.com and since I couldn't find this book in my library or the virtual library catelogue, I ordered it. I received it yesterday and began reading. I think it will take me a very long time to complete this book. Don't get me wrong - it's well written and very informative. It is written by an American who volunteered in a Chinese orphanage. The first thing the author depicts is the story of a woman who is faced with the hardest decision I can ever imagine making - keep her daughter or leave her where she will be found and brought to the orphanage thereby hopefully insuring she has food and shelter. This part of the book made my heart hurt. It is impossible to know why each child's birthparents were unable to raise them. I have my ideas about Jess's birthparents' reasons based on the little information I have but I will never know for certain. While reading, my heart hurt for the mother and for the innocent baby. It is a decision I cannot imagine having to make. I only read another chapter after that which dealt with their move to China. I am usually a fast reader but I think this is a book that, while I want to finish it, I will be going to and leaving off and on until completion.
An American volunteer in a Chinese orphanage learns to pull from the hidden strength within her to improve conditions for the children. If you have ever wondered what day to day life is like in a Chinese orphanage, this will tell it. If you have ever wondered what it is like to love a child so deeply, even though they aren't yours, this will tell it. If you have ever wondered what it would be like to move to a third-world country, this will tell it.