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Mistaken Identity: Two Families, One Survivor, Unwavering Hope | [Don Van Ryn, Susie Van Ryn, Colleen Cerak, Whitney Cerak, Newell Cerak]

Mistaken Identity: Two Families, One Survivor, Unwavering Hope

The story begins as Colleen and Newell Cerak first learn the doubtful, then shocking news that their daughter, buried five weeks earlier, is still alive. Forming a backdrop to the reunion are the faces of the Van Ryn family, strangers to the Ceraks, who are just coming to terms with the harsh reality that the girl whose bedside they have been posted at for five weeks is not their daughter after all - and that their own daughter, Laura, has already been buried under the name of Whitney Cerak.
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Publisher's Summary

Part 1: Reunion or Farewell?
The story begins as Colleen and Newell Cerak first learn the doubtful, then shocking news that their daughter, buried five weeks earlier, may still be alive. It continues with Colleen's drive to the hospital with the dental records, amidst desperate calls to Newell, overseas on a mission, and finally the reunion. Forming a backdrop to the reunion are the faces of the Van Ryn family, strangers to the Ceraks, who are just coming to terms with the harsh reality that the girl whose bedside they have been posted at for five weeks is not their daughter after all - and that their own daughter, Laura, has already been buried under the name of Whitney Cerak.

Part 2: Five Weeks or a Lifetime?
Part 2 begins the night of the accident and continues up through "Laura's" arrival in the emergency room. The rest of this section centers upon the five weeks when the Ceraks believed their daughter to be dead, and the Van Ryns cared for a girl that was not their own. Woven into these chapters are the back stories of both families and their daughters, including the key questions of how each of these individuals reached a point at which they could respond to this tragedy as they did. A strong element of this story is how the families came to faith and how that faith developed to the point where they could trust God through the unthinkable. The characters all take on full dimensions in this part, and listeners will identify with and feel a strong affection for them. In this section, both families are still separated, traveling down two different arcs. These arcs come together in the night first described in chapter one. Finally, this section will explore the unfolding drama of the Van Ryn's growing doubts that the girl in the hospital is their daughter.

©2008 Don Van Ryn, Susie Van Ryn, Colleen Cerak, Whitney Cerak, Newell Cerak; (P)2008 Simon and Schuster, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (70 )
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4.6 (24 )
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4.4 (24 )
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  •  
    Amanda Galesburg, MI United States 10-06-08
    Amanda Galesburg, MI United States 10-06-08 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    33
    4
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    "Great book!"

    I have listened to this book numerous times. Being from Michigan this story was in the news quite a bit. Both of these families have great amounts of strength and courage. I have and would again recommend this book to my friends.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rhonda North Versailles, PA, USA 04-24-09
    Rhonda North Versailles, PA, USA 04-24-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great"

    This book was very compelling. I watched the 60 minutes report on this and just had to get the book/audiobook on this story. It was very well written.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kim Texarkana, TX, USA 04-06-08
    Kim Texarkana, TX, USA 04-06-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Mistaken Identity"

    this was a great book. I can't imagine this happening to anyone. my prayer are with those who still need them.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Beverly Canyon, TX, USA 07-24-10
    Beverly Canyon, TX, USA 07-24-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good Christian Values ..."

    This is an excellent audio book! What beautiful people both families are. What deep love for God that walks the walk and doesn't just talk the talk. Very moving and touching! Excellent choice!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Val B. Sigler ohio 01-03-09
    Val B. Sigler ohio 01-03-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "sad but wonderful story"

    unreal what happens to these families, but the strong faith they have is wonderful! i must hear story.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marian La Palma, CA, United States 07-18-14
    Marian La Palma, CA, United States 07-18-14

    Avid listener ! Sucker for romance and memoirs

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    "Worth a credit !! One of my fave !!"

    Love the story .. A heartwarming and touching story about family . I just find it odd that their own parents didn't recognize their own daughter ..

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rebecca Rockville, IN, United States 02-04-13
    Rebecca Rockville, IN, United States 02-04-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Awesome book!!!!!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, it is nice to listen to a book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    That all are Christians. All the love!!


    What about Lillian Thayer’s performance did you like?

    She has a wonderful voice!!!


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    I don't know anything about this.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A Lady from Missouri Missouri 10-02-11
    A Lady from Missouri Missouri 10-02-11 Member Since 2009

    Me

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    "Really, REALLY good!"

    This book was much better than I expected. I really really liked it and have also researched many of the news articles of the time. I love the way the families did it together. God bless them all!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Audrey Marlton, NJ, USA 12-30-08
    Audrey Marlton, NJ, USA 12-30-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    21
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    "Life is what you make it"

    Amazing story with a strong religious overtone much needed by the families involved but perhaps not what the listener bargained for.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
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