Book Review: The Sons of the Family Unfold Through Revealed Secrets
Days away from finalizing the adoption of a boy from a Chinese orphanage, Tony and Tam can’t wait to welcome him home and mend their sometimes fragile marriage. As we take a moment to celebrate their joy, Tam learns that Tony was suddenly taken from her in a tragic accident. As if that wasn’t enough family sadness, Tam learns that Tony’s cousin Mia was with him at the time and also didn’t survive. Once very close, Mia has been estranged from Tony and Tam for years, and Tam doesn’t know why Tony and Mia would have been together on that fateful day.
To add to Tam’s upset, she discovers that she is now the sole guardian of Mia’s five-year-old daughter, Angela. Although Tony and Mia are gone, it seems that the red thread of fate will keep them intertwined in ways Tam hadn’t imagined.
The book alternates between the voices of Tam and Mia. Tam describes her struggles with her mother, her insecurity in her new role as a mother herself, and her questions about Tony and Mia. We get to know Mia through her diaries, which provide insight into the breakup that caused the family to break up and the thread that will bring them together.
There aren’t really any big surprises here, which I thought would happen pretty much, but Butler writes what she knows and the stories of international adoption, found families and heartbreak are written with emotion, but not particularly deeply. This is a light novel of family ups and downs that touches your heart. All in all, an enjoyable read.
Helen Varga is a Library Technician at the Steveston Branch of the Richmond Public Library. She is currently reading the Iona Whishaw mystery series. For other popular reading suggestions, check out the Richmond Public Library website.