Title: Intimate Strangers
Author: Anne M. Strick
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Romance
Published on: January 5th 2011
Purchase: Amazon (Paperback) | Amazon (Kindle) | B&N
This wonderful book is the first to focus on one aspect of man’s inhumanity to child that has crossed my path many times: that confusing world of adoptions. Anne M. Strick artfully sets up parallel adoption scenarios that immerse the readers in the very heart of the characters – birth parents, adoptive parents, and most importantly, the hearts of children themselves. With this book, she gives us the impetus to legally, practically and morally move to fulfill for our children the promise of the Pledge of Allegiance – “With Liberty and Justice for All!” Heart-catching, suspense, hot tears and hot sex.
Intimate Strangers is the kind of book that doesn’t let you go, even after you’ve finished reading. It grabs you and pulls you in, and lingers on in your mind longer after you’ve turned that final page. At least, it felt that way to me. The problems Intimate Strangers puts on the map have a special meaning to me as well. The book is about adoption, and how sometimes adoptions can go wrong, especially when after x amount of years the biological parents decide they want the child back, and go to court. This can result in tearing away the child from the only home he/she’s known for many years, and can be stressful and even traumatizing. As is frowned upon in this novel, often the court rules in favor of the biological parents, ruling that genes and DNA mean more than living somewhere for many years, and being loved and taken care of by adoptive parents.
I wanted to read this book primarily because I’m adopted myself. I spend my entire childhood not knowing my biological parents, and in retrospect, I’m glad for that. They weren’t bad people, but they couldn’t keep their act together long enough to raise a child. They stumbled from problem into problem, and I’m glad they never got it in their minds to want me back. When my parents eventually told me I was adopted, I was eighteen years old. I went to search for my biological parents because I was curious – I wanted to know why they had given me away. The moment I found them though, the answer was pretty obvious. They were unfit to raise children. I’m glad they made the decision to give me up for adoption, and I love my parents as much as any daughter can love her parents.
Now you probably understand why this book speaks to my heart. If my biological parents had ever tried to get me back, that would’ve been desastrous. In this book, the same happens to a little boy named Timmy. After spending years not caring for him, his biological Dad suddenly gets his act together and files for custody. Georgie and Dru, owners of an adoption center helping both adults interested in adopting a child, and pregnant women who’d like to give their child up for adoption, get involved in the case and want to help out.
Meanwhile, the two women learn a lot about themselves and each other. They’ve been friends since university, but never really shared much besides the usual information. They’re both very secretive about their past. But as the story unfolds, they need to come clear, or their friendship will perish.
This book was an emotional read for me, and I imagine it’ll be like that for many people who pick it up and decide to read it. Intimate Strangers is a plea for justice for the most innocent and helpless among us. Don’t give children back to parents who can’t raise them. Don’t tear them away from the only home they’ve ever known. Don’t bring children back to parents who may abuse them. Instead of protecting the parents’ rights, start protecting the children.