Two Voices, One Story
This is the true story of a girl called Amy and the English “mother” who adopted her from an institute in China when she was just a baby.
It’s a story about love, family and identity; and the unbreakable bond between mother and daughter.
When Amy came to be adopted in 1999, China’s then notorious one-child policy had given rise to a generation of missing girls. Amy was one of them, destined to life in an orphanage if she was lucky enough to survive. That is, until she was adopted by a loving British couple who were desperate to give her the home she deserved; Elaine and Lee.
In this moving autobiography, Amy and Elaine chart their own personal experiences of their shared adoption story. Theirs is not a political account, but one which is open about the challenges of adopting a child from a foreign country and the long journey that follows; from China to the UK and from infancy through to adolescence, as Amy and her new family learn and grow together.
Now a bright and ambitious young woman on the eve of her eighteenth birthday, Amy is braced for an exciting journey into adulthood, one which her proud mother is delighted to be able to share.
Two Voices, One Story is a frank but uplifting account of the complex adoption process and the profound relationship between a mother and her adopted child.
What does TWG think?
What intrigued me about this story at first, was the title and the blurb (believe it or not, yes, I actually read a blurb). The adoption process is something I don’t have much knowledge about, but then again, I haven’t needed to know anything as I have never gone through it myself. However, Amy and Elaine have. Amy was born in 1999, China. A time where the severity of the outcome due to having more than one child, was incredibly high. There were only a certain amount of options for baby Amy to choose from, except she wouldn’t have any choice in the matter, seeing as she was too little to decide anything apart from eating and sleeping. Orphanage? Death? Adoption? What a predicament to be in at the start of your life. The time where you should be surrounded by people who love you instead of being faced with 2/3 uncertainties (whether you’re aware of them or not). Very sad.
Amy and Elaine have shared their own personal story from adoption, to the present moment. Both women get to have their say and explain things from their own points of views, as the chapters switch between them both. It’s a very lovely account of a mothers love towards her daughter and the obvious joy of being able to adopt Amy, creating a safe haven for their new family.
But, despite the interesting facts behind adoption and how turbulent that time can be for everyone involved, the only other thing to keep my interest was where Amy was born and the history behind that at the time. I couldn’t quite see made this book stand out from the others in a similar genre. I do understand how the family must have been over the moon to adopt their long-awaited child, after losing their biological child, don’t get me wrong. But why a book? Is this going to encourage every single adoptee to write a book about the love their new parents gave them? Isn’t loving your child part and parcel of being a parent? I couldn’t fathom the constant justification of their mother/daughter relationship.
However, even though I had a few reservations, I did enjoy reading about the processes they went through, especially given how hard it must have been to relive their own heart breaking moment before they adopted Amy. Amy and Elaine’s story highlights how important it is to be one hundred percent sure about adopting. It is a life long commitment. The child(ren) are not an object you can return for a refund if they turn out differently to what you thought. Elaine, especially, reiterates how you need to fully committed to the process and the child, as well as being open-minded about the future and what questions your new addition to the family, may bring to the table. I admire Elaine’s strength. I admire Elaine for adopting Amy and pretty much saving her life.
‘Two Voices, One Story’ opened my eyes to the topic of adoption and exactly how much joy it can bring if it’s handled correctly, and lovingly.
Thank you Authoright.