Before We Were Yours

Book Review of
Before We Were Yours

Author: Lisa Wingate
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Memphis, 1939. Twelve-year-old Rill Foss and her four younger siblings live a magical life aboard their family’s Mississippi River shantyboat. But when their father must rush their mother to the hospital one stormy night, Rill is left in charge—until strangers arrive in force. Wrenched from all that is familiar and thrown into a Tennessee Children’s Home Society orphanage, the Foss children are assured that they will soon be returned to their parents—but they quickly realize the dark truth. At the mercy of the facility’s cruel director, Rill fights to keep her sisters and brother together in a world of danger and uncertainty.

Aiken, South Carolina, present day. Born into wealth and privilege, Avery Stafford seems to have it all: a successful career as a federal prosecutor, a handsome fiancé, and a lavish wedding on the horizon. But when Avery returns home to help her father weather a health crisis, a chance encounter leaves her with uncomfortable questions and compels her to take a journey through her family’s long-hidden history, on a path that will ultimately lead either to devastation or to redemption.

Based on one of America’s most notorious real-life scandals—in which Georgia Tann, director of a Memphis-based adoption organization, kidnapped and sold poor children to wealthy families all over the country—Lisa Wingate’s riveting, wrenching, and ultimately uplifting tale reminds us how, even though the paths we take can lead to many places, the heart never forgets where we belong.

Lynn's Review

Before We Were Yours
Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate is another book that I almost didn’t read because it got so much attention. But earlier this year I read Tender Roses by the same author, and I loved it. I knew that I wanted to read more books by Lisa Wingate and decided to give Before We Were Yours a try. I now understand why this book as so many four and five star reviews.

This book is one that I can’t stop thinking about. I kept telling my daughter that it was so good that I didn’t want to put it down, but at the same time it was so sad that I wasn’t sure I could keep reading it.

Before We Were Yours is based on the real life story of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society orphanage. I also read and loved the nonfiction version, Before and After, and loved it. It is such a touching story that I will not forget.

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