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Publisher's Summary

Ashley Rhodes-Courter spent nine years of her life in 14 different foster homes. As her mother spirals out of control, Ashley is left clinging to an unpredictable, dissolving relationship, all the while getting pulled deeper and deeper into the foster-care system. In this inspiring, unforgettable memoir, Ashley finds the courage to succeed - and in doing so, discovers the power of her own voice.
©2008 Ashley Rhodes-Courter; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

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Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

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  • Overall
  • Annie
  • Boulder Creek, CA, USA
  • 02-03-09

Wow! Haunting, riveting, memorable!

What a bright young girl who was passed from foster home to foster home and happened to be a gifted writer and grow up to tell it all.

If you ever wanted to be in the heart and mind of a child living a life very different from the norm, Ashley provides an articulate recounting. From her early days with her troubled mother to all the stops along the way to adulthood and a family who (finally!) loves her and adopts her, this story is irresistible.

The voice of the young narrator is perfect -- you feel as if Ashley is sitting next to you, wistfully sharing the truths and realities of her unbelievable life.

Highly recommended.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

Been there, done that

This is just one of those stories that breaks your heart, but then puts it back together when you realize that this kid, with every imaginable strike against her, has made something of her life. She is an excellent writer, and although she likely had a ghost writer, I would not be surprised to learn that she did the whole thing on her own. That is the kind of person she is.

Having an adopted daughter who went through a lot of trauma in the foster care system, and having a lot of residual problems because of everything that went on in her young life and with her adoptive parents, this story really struck close to home. So many times I found myself thinking, "Yup, been there done that," "Oh yeh, I sure know how THAT feels," "Uh-huh, you did the right thing," and on and on. I am so happy for Ashley and admire her strength so much. Not being a professional narrator, she did an admirable job of telling her story.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Moving, heart felt and very real.

As a social worker this audio book really hit home. Our children are our future and they sometimes need to be protected. If we are their protectors then we need to make sure that we are doing our job. Ashley is a remarkable young woman and is a reminder of when systems go wrong there ARE people affected. Her, her birth family, her adoptive family and the many of thousands of children in foster care.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Incredible Story

This is a cohesive, well-told, and incredibly lived story. It's hard to believe that the author was so young when she wrote it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Well writte; well read

This was heart wrenching at times. It is hard to believe that in this country we can't seem to do more to keep our children from such horrific treatment. The author seemed to keep herself together despite the poor care, disappointments, etc.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Excellent Listen

This is an excellent audiobook. Heartbreaking though!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

Three Little Words

This book reveals the truth about most foster care issues that most choose to ignore. I hope that this book and the many voices trying to shed light on this broken system, will indeed start the healing process of the system and lives.

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  • Story

An Amazing Story

Being a foster parent and in the process of adoption myself, it made things & actions more understandable.
An amazing story of strength, struggles and finally prevailing love . Couldn't put this story down !

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  • Story

Important look into the foster care system

This is a straightforward narrative about the author's life, born to a mother who did not have her act together, entered a foster care system that was at best, negligent, and at worst, malignant, until she was adopted. Ashley's resilience comes through her narrative. Most of the foster parents she dealt with were reasonably kind, one couple was vicious and brutal, and the foster system was irresponsible, lazy and dreadful. She ended up in an orphanage that did a good job, although her description of "shopping" prospective parents is depressing. Ashley was lucky enough to be adopted by two kind and also well-off people, who encouraged her to follow her fight-back instincts. The whole book makes you think people should have to get a license to parent, and that the licensing bureau cannot be managed by state government.

Ashley narrates her story herself. She is an ok reader, but an actress would have made for a more pleasant listen.

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  • Story

If you ever knew or were a foster child

A true look into the life of one foster child's journey. Tragic with an inspiring victory. What an advocate she became.
Ashley provides a child's insight into abandonment and abuse. Tragically, the foster system is overburdened and broken. Let this boy ok change how you see youth in crisis.