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Before We Were Yours (2017)
(Book)

Call Number MARKETPLACE/FICTION/WINGATE,L


Available
(47 holds on 27 copies)
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Published: New York : Ballantine Books, [2017]
Edition:  First edition
Description:  342 pages ; 24 cm
ISBN/ISSN: 9780425284681, 0425284689,
Language:  English


"Two families, generations apart, are forever changed by a heartbreaking injustice in this poignant novel, inspired by a true story, for readers of Orphan Train and The Nightingale. 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 fiance, 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"--

"Memphis, Tennessee, 1936. The five Foss children find their lives changed forever when their parents leave them alone on the family shantyboat one stormy night. Rill Foss, just twelve years old, must protect her four younger siblings as they are wrenched from their home on the Mississippi and thrown into the care of the infamous Georgia Tann, director of the Tennessee Children's Home Society. South Carolina, Present Day. Avery Stafford has lived a charmed life. Loving daughter to her father, a U.S. Senator, she has a promising career as an assistant D.A. in Baltimore and is engaged to her best friend. But when Avery comes home to help her father weather a health crisis and a political attack, a chance encounter with a stranger leaves her deeply shaken. Avery's decision to learn more about the woman's life will take her on a journey through her family's long-hidden history"--

Related Searches:
Brothers and sisters -- Fiction.
Orphanages -- Fiction.
Domestic fiction.
Historical fiction.
Fiction.
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Before We Were Yours

Lisa Wingate’s novel Before We Were Yours teaches us about one of America's real-life scandals. Georgia Tann was the director of a Memphis-based adoption organization, who kidnapped and sold poor children to wealthy families all over the country. In the year 1939, Rill Foss is a twelve-year-old river gypsy who lives on a Mississippi River shanty boat with her parents and four younger siblings. When an emergency takes their parents to the hospital, strangers take the children from their world and place them into an orphanage.

Throughout this story, a tale is told about the wealthy, politically savvy Stafford family. It is through the work of Avery Stafford, the daughter of a senator and granddaughter of a woman suffering the effects of Alzheimer’s that the story is woven together with Rill’s story. The chapters alternate between Rill's telling and Avery’s resolve to find out what it was that drove her grandmother to be so secretive. As Avery discovers the truth, the story of the Flosses is uncovered.

The author takes an almost unthinkable chapter in our nation’s history and tells a story of most compelling power. That someone like Georgia Tann and her Memphis Tennessee Children’s Home Society could actually exist is shocking. Countless lives of children were affected, stealing their pasts and changing their futures.

Before We Were Yours is a gripping story about two families, and the secrets that surround them. Beautifully told, this novel will stay with you long after the last page.
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