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on June 25, 2000
Those of us who are fortunate enough to raise a Chinese child must read this well-written book. There are scads of adoption books that tell one how to adopt a child, or the story of a particular adoption journey. This title includes that information but adds important data not included in other adoption books.
Using scholarly and other reliable print resources, the author presents an accurate (as far as we in the West know) description of WHY Chinese girls are abandoned in such great numbers. She outlines the horrifying reasons behind the one-child policy in China, discusses how the law is enforced or not enforced in various Chinese regions, and the cultural preference for boys. More importantly, the book includes some information on the grief felt by those parents forced to abandon a daughter.
When our daughters from China are older, they will almost certainly want to know why they were abandoned. This title cannot speak to all individual circumstances, but it certainly clearly explains the social, demographic and economic pressures that force child abandonment.
N.B. the author takes pains to outline why, in China, abandonment is an adoption plan.
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VINE VOICEon May 8, 2001
Karin Evans has done a great service by writing this book. While it is an invaluable resource to present and future adoptive parents of Chinese children, it is also an important reminder for everyone of the situation in China that has lead to the abandonment of countless baby girls.
Evan's story is tremendously moving, although she never resorts to gimmicky heartstring pulling. She tells the barefaced truth about Chinese adoption, complete with the anxiety, frustration, confusion and utter joy that accompanies the process. She also very intelligently outlines the underlying factors that enable Americans to adopt Chinese babies in the first place. While never accusing or pointing a finger, she thoughtfully presents well-researched information about China's one-child policy and the cultural preference for male children, and discusses government attempts to curb population. She explores the anguish experienced by Chinese birth parents who must give up their children in hope of giving them a better life, and she is respectful of the painful decisions these parents are forced to make. In addition, Anchee Min's brief preface is haunting. Lost Daughters of China is not only for those considering Chinese adoption, but for anyone interested in child welfare and/or Chinese social policy.
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on September 28, 2000
I do not give five star ratings lightly. This book is a gem. As other reviewers have mentioned, this book is part Chinese adoption "how to" and part travel diary. Both those sections are admirably done, but I treasure this book because Karen Evans presents a succinct summary of the causative factors of child abandonment in China.
I would strongly recommend that anyone who has adopted from China or may adopt in the future read this book, for the sake of your daughter. Ideally, adopted children should have some contact with their biological parents. This isn't possible for our Chinese daughters. They will almost definitely want to know why they were abandoned. Evan's book explains the subordinate position of women in Chinese society, the factors that drive the need of Chinese parents for a son, and the origins of the one-child policy and how it works (or doesn't work.)
In addition, _Lost Daughters of China_ will educate anyone with an interest in the status of women in the world.
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on May 31, 2000
As the grandmother of an adopted Chinese four year old, I treasure this book for the evocative way the author told of her feelings about her journey to China to get her daughter, so much like my own daughter's story, so much like my own feelings. In addition to the emotional pull of the story, however, is the intelligent approach explaining this socio-cultural phenomenon. Evans' research is thorough, bringing together many facets of a complicated situation. She is an advocate for parents and their daughters, whether the parents are American or Chinese.
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on September 8, 2005
How can you sum up the importance of this book except to say that as one who has a beautiful adopted daughter from China, the author and I have walked the same path, asked ourselves the same questions and feel the same joys and pains that go with the successes of adopting. A story beautifully told that helps us all understand the life of our daughters before they came to us, why they were available for us and how to answer so many of the questions that we have and what our daughters will be asking. I tip my hat to a job well done amid many tears. Thank you for putting into words what so many of us cannot.
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on October 6, 2000
This informational book is recommended to anyone considering the adoption of a Chinese girl. The morals, ethics and emotions involved in such adoptions are illustrated by the author as she relates her experience with the process. Karin Evans addresses the questions that all adoptive parents have, and then brings to the fore many considerations that are unique to the adoption of abandoned girls from China. A good resource for those beginning to think about adopting in China. Recommended reading for adoptive parents of Chinese girls who are are preparing for their daughter's questions about their native land and the reasons behind their abandonment.
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on November 17, 2014
This book is a wonderful portrait of the Chinese adoption experience from the inside out for the "lost daughters". As an adoptive parent of a Chinese daughter it was particularly powerful for me. Prior to her adoption I had a very different view of the biological mothers and fathers who gave up these special children; after I experienced the process and was in China, I realized what a sacrifice this is for them, how devastating and shattering it is for them. Reading about this experience through their eyes as Ms Evans has written so impactfully, really changes your perspective. Getting a better understanding on generations of the devaluation of females and how its impact is still felt today is something that Westerners have so little experience with, even those who have participated in this process. As a mother of biological children and an adopted child I think every day of the parents of our daughter and what it meant for them to give her up, initially and every day of their lives and also how I will best convey this to her with each passing year of her life. There are no simple explanations and this is no simple task. This book illustrates this like no other I've read to date.
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on April 20, 2006
This book was an excellent resource. I am a year away from beginning the adoption process and this book convinced me that a Chinese adoption was a perfect fit. Evans is honest and up front in this book. It also has historical information on China's social policies that have led to the abandonment of so many little girls.
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on May 21, 2005
As a mother of a toddler and an infant, I rarely have free time to curl up with a good book. But since I am exploring adopting from China, I decided to read as much as possible on the subject. I was definitely not disappointed with this book. I read it from cover to cover in 3 days during my sons' naps. I was enthralled by Karin Evans' descriptions of the sights, sounds and smells of China during her visit to pick up her daughter. The information she presents regarding China's one-child policy is both educational and heart-wrenching. She explores adoption from her point of view as well as the child's and birthmother's sides, which I found compelling. This is a "must read" for anyone considering adoption from China.
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on March 9, 2006
This book is a fairly quick read and gives you a foundation on the culture if you are considering adopting from China. After reading this book, I was even more determined to adopt a child from China.
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