My rating: 4 of 5 stars
4 stars! Cover love!!!!
BEFORE WE WERE YOURS by LISA WINGATE is a heartbreaking, interesting, and a powerful Historical Fiction novel that was enlightening to read. This story was inspired by actual true life events about the Tennessee Children’s Home Society that was based in Memphis and the director Georgia Tann. This Memphis-based adoption organization was absolutely horrific in the way that they treated and exploited these children.
We thought that LISA WINGATE did a wonderful job at shedding light onto this story of how these children were exploited and of course, it was very heartbreaking and shocking to read about. Some of us didn’t even know that this horror even existed and went on for so long. Our heart broke for the children, parents and for the adoptive parents as well. Although, this story was based on true life stories the actual children that were portrayed in this novel were fictional.
LISA WINGATE delivers a well-researched and emotional story here with alternate timelines, one from the past which was told by a young girl named Rill who was taken from her parents along with her brother and three sisters and were brought to this horrible place. The present day story was told to us by an adult woman named Avery who is in search of learning the truth about her Grandmother’s past.
Out of the two storylines a few of us enjoyed the present day one a little bit more as we didn’t connect as much to the characters from the past story as we did to the present day ones. The children that were in this horror home they all seemed to blur together and we felt like we never really got to know them. We absolutely felt for the children in a whole though but all the horror just blended together. We felt we could see Rill’s grief but we couldn’t feel her grief. We could see that she wanted to go home to her parents but really couldn’t feel her desperation. Some of us thought LISA WINGATE spent a little too much time on that and it created too much drama for some of us. For the others they really enjoyed both stories. We absolutely loved how the two stories came together in the end though.
Brenda and I read BEFORE WE WERE YOURS with four of our Traveling Sisters and we were split on how we felt about this one with some of us loving it much more. For Brenda and I we were split as well with me enjoying it somewhat more than what she did. Most of us agree this was our favorite kind of historical fiction however for a couple of us things didn’t quite work out as well for them.
To sum it all up it was an engrossing, moving, heart-wrenching, and ultimately uplifting tale that has definitely left us with a lasting impression. Would recommend!