No Matter What: A Foster Care Tale
Grace is determined to find Josh a home, a place he can finally feel he belongs. She carries the tearful squirrel on her wings to visit the pelicans, porcupines, and kangaroos. When one of the kangaroos suggests he must learn to climb, Grace soars Josh over to where the leopards reside. When they discover his intense fear of the dark, they taunt him relentlessly. In his angst, he vows, “I’ll crack them before they crack me.” While they lay in deep slumber, he mischievously paints designs on their coats. When, at last, Grace introduces him to the elephants, he learns that unconditional love and acceptance are possible and that having a family is an invaluable gift.
Josh Shipp’s heartwarming book parallels his own story as a child through the lives of these precious, and at times hilarious, creatures. Even some of the names of the characters match those of people from his own life. The squirrel represents him as a child, and the two forgiving and compassionate elephants depict his foster parents, Rodney and Christine Weisenmaier, whom he refers to as “the strong, immovable, and loving family that pulled me out of my own rushing river.” This narrative is a remarkable contribution to literature for young children. It’s unique and reflective of the lives of youth who grow up not having a place to call home. It sends a beautiful message of hope to those who may yearn for it the most.
|Josh Shipp with David Tieche
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