Arun really wants to be a big brother. In fact, he really wants to be a big brother to a little sister, especially since the special, Indian holiday of Rakhi is quickly approaching. Rakhi celebrates the special bond between brothers and sisters and Arun wants to share this day with a little sister.
A few months later in early October, Arun learns that his parents are submitting paperwork to adopt a baby girl from India. Arun's dad is from India and will be the one to travel to India to pick up their new addition. The months drag on and along the way we as readers of Bringing Asha Home witness Arun's frustration and excitement that the international adoption process brings to a family. The December referral picture of baby Asha, the March celebration of Arun's birthday, the late Spring call about more delays in the process of paperwork, to the June preparing of the nursery - the international adoption process is related in a very simple, but realistic way that may help other future siblings understand that adoption takes time.
Arun spends his time talking about how his dad will fly to India to pick up Asha and decides to make a special paper airplane as his gift to her. He also spends time with his best friend, Michael and Michael's little sister, Denali and watches how Michael interacts with his baby sister.
This book will make an excellent addition to the adoptive or pre-adoptive parent's book shelf as it may help children understand that there is a long wait for an adoption to be completed. The book also speaks to the excitement and sadness that goes with the long wait of adding to the family through adoption and the impact it may have on waiting siblings.
Bringing Asha Home features soft artwork with subtle colors that convey the emotions of the storyline. There are also a few glossary words found at the beginning of the book with pronunciation of Indian words and an author's note at the end of the book that further explains the Indian holiday Rakhi.
About the Author and Illustrator
Uma Krishnaswami has written several children's books including, The Happiest Tree, Choices, and Monsoon. According to the final author's note at the end of the book, Krishnaswami interviewed several adoptive families as part of her research for writing Bringing Asha Home. She learned of the long wait that goes along with adopting from India and the joy and excitement of finally becoming a forever family. She lives in New Mexico with her husband and son.
Jamel Akib award winning art not only appears in Bringing Asha Home and Monsoon, but also in many museum's and gallery shows in England. He resides in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, England.
Final Thoughts and More Information
Though Bringing Asha Home is primarily about a young family completing an Indian Adoption, I think that Bringing Asha Home is a great book for all adoptive and international adoptive families to own. Bringing Asha Home is also a beautiful book for pre-adoptive families, especially those completing an international adoption, and would make a wonderful adoption gift for a family that is in the process of adopting internationally. It would also be a great gift for the siblings of an adoption or international adoptive family.
Bringing Asha Home is a book that would be appropriate for children ages 4 through 10 with a reading level at grade three.
(Published by Lee & Low Books Inc., New York (2006) ISBN-13: 978-1-58430-259-9