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Message from an Unknown Chinese Mother: Stories of Loss and Love Hardcover – Mar 1 2010

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Hardcover, Mar 1 2010
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Chatto & Windus (March 1 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0701184027
  • ISBN-13: 978-0701184025
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 1.9 x 24.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 381 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #628,971 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


"This is an extraordinary book told with generosity and warmth by a brilliant storyteller" -- Hilary Spurling Financial Times "Xinran rages against the system and gives voice to adoptive mothers overseas who have rescued young Chinese girls and desolate birth mothers who grieve and feel guilt for the loss of their daughters" -- Iain Finlayson The Times "One would have to have a heart of stone not to be moved" Economist "No bleaker picture exists of the fate of Chinese female infants...than Message from an Unknown Chinese Mother" Spectator "Harrowing and heartbreaking yet important tales" SHE Magazine --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Born in Beijing in 1958, XINRAN was a journalist and radio presenter in China. In 1997 she moved to London, where she wrote her bestselling book The Good Women of China. Since then she has written a regular column for the Guardian, appeared frequently on radio and TV and published Sky Burial, What the Chinese Don't Eat, a novel (Miss Chopsticks), and a groundbreaking work of oral history, China Witness. Her charity, The Mothers' Bridge of Love, was founded to help disadvantaged Chinese children and to build a bridge of understanding between the West and China.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kelliinportland on June 18 2010
Format: Hardcover
As a mom to a 2 year old from China, I have not had time to read more than one page at a sitting since she came home almost a year and a half ago. But I could not put this book down and finished it in just a few days. If she had gone to bed earlier and I didn't have to go to work the next day, I would have finished it the same day/evening I started it. I am already wanting to read it a second time.

A MUST READ for any family who plans to or has adopted from China. It gives great cultural perspective to gain a better understanding of the vast array of possibilities of how and why our children may have come into orphanage care. I truly cannot believe that someone could read this and NOT feel compassion towards their child's birth family, if they didn't already. While some of the stories are not shocking to me (based on having already done much reading on the subject of child abandonment and orphanage care in China), the information is more personal and a very good balance to other text. It's a must have in your library if you are a family with a child from China.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Louise Jolly TOP 100 REVIEWER on June 15 2011
Format: Hardcover
Any family thinking about adopting a child from China, MUST read this book! It lays out the laws of adoption, gives extremely credible cultural perspective and gives a compassionate voice to and for the many Chinese women who, heartbreakingly, were forced to abandon or place their beloved children in orphanages.

Xinran does an incredible job at addressing the unimaginable heartache and pain millions of Chinese mothers suffered as they were pressured to abandon their children in the street, leave their crying infant on the steps of a run-down and inadequate orphanage, and even kill their own child!

Unfortunately, these are the realities of China and for every mother there who has lost a child, they carry unbelievable and undeniable pain, anguish, torment, and suffering that at times, drives them to commit suicide.

This is an emotional book that you MUST read! As a non-Chinese mother, this incredible book evoked emotions deep into my soul and awakening feelings I didn't even know I had. My heart truly goes out to the millions of Chinese mothers and daughters everywhere who don't know each other or who wait to someday to meet again on some plane.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John L on April 9 2011
Format: Hardcover
Xinran's story is very close to home. I am the proud grandparent of a beautiful, intelligent and very happy adopted girl from the Xian area. She has been with us for 6 1/2 years and was 10 months old when my daughter and her husband brought her home to Canada. She knows her history and has a map of China in her room highlighting the area she is from. I suspect that one day she will instigate a search for her birth mother and Xinran's Foundation may be the starting point. Our whole family will provide loving support for her journey.Message from an Unknown Chinese Mother: Stories of Loss and Love
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