Discovering Mom

Young Adult - Coming of Age
293 Pages
Reviewed on 07/27/2023
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

I'm a fiction writer based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and thus far I've written five novels. What inspired me to write my latest book, "Discovering Mom?" Well... like my main character, Daniel, I too was adopted at birth—though I’m part Italian instead of Native American—and I wanted to write about what it's like to grow up being different than your brothers and sisters and all your schoolmates. I also thought it'd be nice for Daniel to find a kindred spirit, so I created Jasmine who proves to be every bit his equal as they search for more like-minded people, including his birth mother. On top of everything else, I wanted to write something more whimsical and less dark than my last story—something that will hopefully appeal to a broader audience despite my quirky sense of humor.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Discovering Mom is a work of fiction in the coming-of-age, interpersonal drama, and nostalgic writing subgenres. It is best suited to the general young adult and adult reading audiences and contains only mild adult references and language. Penned by author Bryan Foreman, the story takes place during the 1970s in the USA, where we meet an adopted youngster, Daniel. Fitting in has never been easy for this biracial kid, but as he begins to shift from boyhood into a young man, he meets a fellow student with similar identity issues who encourages him to get in touch with his biological family. So begins a compelling family drama filled with adventure and heart.

Author Bryan Foreman has crafted a really worthwhile and emotionally fascinating tale that was so easy to get into, yet hard to let go of. I got very invested in Daniel and related to him immensely, stuck as he was with the door closed on a whole section of his life and heritage that he was dying to learn more about. I enjoyed the process of discovery, and the pacing of the novel reflects these many new twists whilst also giving us plenty of time to appreciate the growth along the way. Mary’s story was also a powerful plot-line running alongside that of her son, and the feeling of the novel overall really celebrates the best of the 1970s and the liberating movements around identity and freedom that were born in that era. Overall, Discovering Mom is a must-read for fans of emotionally charged fiction, with plenty of highs and lows along the way.

Pikasho Deka

Discovering Mom is a young adult coming-of-age novel by Bryan Foreman. Set in the 1970s, the book follows the story of a thirteen-year-old boy named Daniel Bennett. Daniel was in seventh grade when he and his sister Susan learned that they were adopted. Growing up with a love of Western movies, Daniel was proud of his half-Comanche heritage and eager for the opportunity to meet with his birth parents. With his adoptive parents' marriage seemingly on the brink of collapse, Daniel found comfort in the company of his best friend, his classmate Jasmine, whose own parents were going through a rough patch. After discovering his birth mother Karen's whereabouts, Daniel and Jasmine embarked on a daring trip to California in search of her. But things did not go according to plan, and Daniel and Jasmine must escape the clutches of a religious cult.

A coming-of-age tale filled with heart and humor, Discovering Mom breaks your heart, makes you smile, but most of all keeps you glued to the pages with a seamless blend of drama and intrigue. Bryan Foreman perfectly captures the angst and agency of being a teenager who feels like an outsider wherever he goes. The narrative glides past at an even pace, leading to an effortless reading experience from start to finish. Foreman shines in crafting well-realized characters who feel human and relatable. Daniel is a conflicted young boy searching for something to hold on to as his parents' marriage breaks down before his eyes. As a reader, you sympathize with Daniel and Jasmine's plight. The plot also throws a couple of curved balls your way to keep you on your toes. A moving story that I highly recommend.

Rabia Tanveer

Discovering Mom by Bryan Foreman is the coming-of-age story of Daniel as he retraces his roots. Set in the 1970s, the story follows Daniel as he struggles to discover who he is. The 13-year-old boy was adopted but never felt at home. School was hell until Jasmine Thornhill arrived. From fighting bullies to gaining courage, Jasmine and Daniel did everything together. Daniel got in touch with his birth mother after being prompted by Jasmine, and suddenly, he wanted to be with her. So, they did exactly what you would expect teenagers to do. They left their homes to look for Daniel's mother Karen. Would the two friends find Karen, or will they be lost forever?

Discovering Mom was exactly what I was expecting to be. It was the story of two teenagers thinking with their hearts and paying no attention to their heads as they journeyed to the San Francisco Bay Area to find Karen. Daniel was confused and vulnerable at the same time. He wanted to belong but was not getting that from his adoptive parents. Jasmine was the best. He could finally relate to someone, feel comfortable, and not feel stupid about it. Daniel's situation made me feel sad. While Mary was journeying to discover herself, Daniel was craving a mother's affection. Karen was ready to reconnect, but was she prepared to be a mother? The narrative style was perfect for the story. The descriptions were not heartbreaking, but they were enough to make you feel Daniel's confusion and pain. Jasmine was a breath of fresh air that Daniel desperately needed. I loved their dynamic and how they supported each other through everything. Author Bryan Foreman ensured his readers would love this story, and I certainly did.