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Reviewed by Amanda Rofe for Readers' Favorite
Another Place Called Home: Surviving Foster Care by Susan DuMond is a memoir of the author's experience of foster care at The Susquehanna Valley Children's Home from the age of eleven until she left to go to college at the age of 18. This is a portrait of the inhospitable and harsh regime of life in a foster home where children were constantly reminded that they had been abandoned and were somehow less worthy. Bullying from the other children and the often cruel treatment from the adults in charge was something to be endured. There was no safe place to run. The hope of being placed with a family was tempered by the ordeal of finding yet another place called home. Today, there are over 400,000 children in foster care on any given day in the USA. It is a sobering statistic.
Another Place Called Home is a sensitive and honest portrayal of the teenage life of one child who slipped into the foster care system at the beginning of her teenage years. Susan DuMond writes a compelling and poignant account of the uncertainty, the poverty, and the poor future that she, and thousands like her, faced in foster care. I admired Susan's strength and quiet ambition to get a college education despite the difficulties, including being labelled a 'home girl', very much a demeaning moniker. This was a touching and heartfelt story, allowing readers to share a very difficult life journey and better understand those left to the mercy of the foster care system. It is also a timely reminder of the vulnerability of children in foster care and may go some way to ensuring that the mistakes of the past will not be repeated in the future.