This book reminded me of one of the books I would have found on my great-grandparents' shelf, mixed in with stories about horses and loyal dogs. (They were mostly my great-Uncle Lonnie's books from his childhood, I later found out.) Reading it was exactly like stepping back in time to when my great-grandparents were beginning their family, and I loved that look back at the time period.
This book details Helen Doss' journey to adopting a dozen children, the majority of whom came from minority backgrounds, all while living on the meager salary her Methodist preacher husband received. Helen takes us from the adoption of her son Donald all the way through moves, sicknesses, house renovations, going back to college, and the final adoption of their last three children.
At one point, Helen mentions being featured in Life magazine with a photo spread. You can read the issue - the family is featured towards the end - through Google Books here
. As I read the article, I thought how amazing it would be for Helen to know that sixty years after the book's publication, someone would be able to pull it up on their computer screen after five minutes' effort, and see her children as they appeared in 1951.
There were a few parts I thought were maybe overly cutesy and probably exaggerated for the sake of humor or the flow of the memoir, but overall, I really enjoyed this sweet look back at a unique family in the 1950s.