When we were considering adoption, way back in 2014, I devoured as many books as I could possibly find on the subject. I wanted to go into the whole process with my eyes wide open, knowing as much as I could. So I read blogs online, ordered vast quantities of books off the internet and was never without my Kindle in my hand. So…I was well prepared?? Actually, it turns out that adoption is NOTHING like the books I read. They were useful, but full of how to’s and wherefore’s and whatabout’s. Which is all very interesting, but told me nothing about what I was about to experience. Fast forward 3 years. The kids have been home for almost 2 years, and in all that time I’ve yet to read one book which mimicked my story…until now! Over on Twitter I recently came across a fantastic author – Emma Sutton – an adopter who was in the process of writing her new book – And Then There Were Four. Having read snippets of her book on her blog nibblesandbubbles.co.uk I felt as though I was reading from a kindred spirit. So when Emma announced that her book had been published, I knew I had to read it!
Oh my goodness – And Then There Were Four is a seriously brilliant, hilarious, heartbreaking, soul warming book!! I devoured it in one day and have since gone back and reread several chapters. Emma’s story is not only her story, but mine and hundreds of others. She weaves the story brilliantly – taking us back to when she and her husband made the decision to adopt, right though to the difficulties and joys of bringing the children home! I really enjoyed the background story, but the parts that resonated with me the most were Emma’s early days of having the children at home. The difficulties she faced, the sense of despair and the desperation for it to all work out. The raw feelings of the children preferring one parent over the other, and the total confusion as to how to fix it!
I so very vividly remember desperately waiting for Paul to come home from work so I could hand over parental responsibility and just go and cry in the bedroom. I’d thought it was just me! I’d thought I was the only one struggling to entertain 2 small children over a long summer holiday. I genuinely remember thinking that I wasn’t cut out to be a mother – I couldn’t do it! But it turns out – it wasn’t just me! Oh how I wish I had had And Then There Were Four to read back then. Even now, when things are really settled in our household and I know how to be ‘mummy’ I loved the feeling of ‘I’m not alone!’. Emma’s totally honest and heart rendering account of her first few months is raw, incredibly truthful and doesn’t pull any punches.
If you are considering adoption – read this book!!! It’ll give you a true to life account of what to expect, will make you laugh and wonder, and will prepare you brilliantly!
If you have just adopted – I know you are tired! I know that you don’t think you have any more room in your brain to read – I’ve been there. But I promise you – this book will make you feel 100% better. You’ll no longer feel alone and suddenly life will feel so much more normal!
If you adopted a while ago – read this book! Remember those days when life was so so so incredibly hard? When putting one foot in front of the other was almost an impossibility? It’s lovely to be out of those days, but it’s also just as lovely to remember how far we have come. And Then There Were Four will help you do that along with some laughs and a few tears!
But the biggest one? The person I feel should read this the most?? Friends and family of people who are adopting! Please, please, please read this book. It’ll give you the most incredible insight into what your loved ones are going through. And no, they won’t be able to tell you this themselves, because to be honest they are in survival mode – but please read it, digest it and understand it. Your loved ones will so very much appreciate that you ‘get it’!
I genuinely believe that And Then There Were Four should be required reading for all prospective adopters and their families. It’s beautifully written, easy to read and understand, unputdownable, but most of all – it’s honest and true. I loved it with every ounce of my being and won’t hesitate to recommend it to everyone I ever meet!
Read it! You won’t regret it!!
Disclaimer: I wasn’t asked to review this book in anyway. I just loved it so much that I wanted others to know about it. If you want to buy it, the Kindle edition is currently for sale on Amazon.