This review is by my daughter Payton Schuck, age 12.
The Little Red Stocking by Tina Dine is a lovely addition to anyone’s adoption library. The Little Red Stocking is about adoption and infertility. It features a man, woman and cat and their journey waiting to adopt a child. Their journey, I think, is similar to my parent’s story.
The couple in this story always wanted a baby but they couldn’t have one. The story is told in the third person. The parents in The Little Red Stocking love each other but feel like something, or someone is missing. Then one day while the wife is out shopping at a market she finds a little red velvet stocking. She thinks it is just what they needed. She shows it to her husband and together they write down little hopes and dreams for a baby. They put the slips of paper in the red stocking each day.
They hang the stocking on the fireplace mantle and together they start to feel a sense of hope. The stocking itself is kind of like a Christmas stocking and the notes inside are a little like a wish list. The husband writes: “Come to us little one and I will place your little hand in mine and I will never let you go.” The wife writes similar messages. After about one year of this, the husband finds it too painful and tells the wife to put the stocking away. One day the stocking gets lost. The man and woman are incredibly sad because the stocking now holds all the wishes of their family also. They want the stocking back. The phone rings and someone finally finds it. The couple meets the woman who found the stocking and she tells them she has read all the wishes inside.
The woman who found the stocking is pregnant. She tells them she wants to make their wishes come true.
I like the book because it is sweet and a bit of a tearjerker. This is a good book for any adoptee. It would be good to read on days when you are feeling like nobody wanted you because you’re birth parents gave you away. When you have the negative thoughts about not being wanted, Little Red Stocking can help because it shows how much adopted children are wanted. The couple in this book really hope with all their heart to make their family into three. Eventually their wish comes true.
The illustrations by Jaded Dragon Studios are cute. Little Red Stocking $14.95 in the US by Mascot Books, $16.95 in Canada. I give this book $$$$ out of $$$$$.
Note from me – Paula: This book deals well with the emotions of infertility and the devastating sadness and grief that accompanies the diagnosis. I like that Payton thinks it is a good resource for adoptees when feeling like they are unwanted. That feeling is a normal part of the adoption experience. I found the illustrations to be simple and I wasn’t crazy about them. I find the story requires a huge amount of suspension of disbelief. Adoption is rarely quite this tidy in the end. But the level of detail and emotion here is very compelling. I have never seen the infertility experience featured in a children’s book and it’s refreshing to read here.
My daughter is enjoying The Little Red Stocking and I welcome all the tools available to help explain and interpret her adoption experience. I received a copy of this book in order to facilitate review.
For me it’s $$$ out of $$$$$.