Memoir of an Adopted Boy
PaperbackPaperback with free ebook
224 pages / November 2010 / 9781844676576
July 2020 / 9781789601169
A revelatory true story about adoption, secrets and the need to belong.
When Jeremy Harding was a child, his mother, Maureen, told him he was adopted. She described his natural parents as a Scandinavian sailor and a “little Irish girl” who worked in a grocery. It was only later, as Harding set out to look for traces of his birth mother, that he began to understand who his adoptive mother really was—and the benign make-believe world she built for herself and her little boy. Evoking a magical childhood spent in transit between west London and a decrepit houseboat on the banks of the River Thames, Mother Country is both a detective quest, as Harding searches through the public records for clues about his natural mother, and a rich social history of a lost London from the 1950s. Mother Country is a powerful true story about a man looking for the mother he had never known and finding out how little he understood the one he had grown up with.
“Harding is a conjurer. Give him a long-since
demolished stairwell, and he'll give
you a world—its sound, its smell, the feeling
that you could stumble upon it still.”
“Beautifully written, funny and sad, this
book is simply captivating.”
“Fluid and invigorating ... a delicate and absorbing account of Harding's investigation into the circumstances of his adoption.”
“Harding's story is that of an adopted boy growing up in London, and his decision later to search for his natural mother. Readers get a detailed chronicle of the search and its ramifications, turning up hidden facets of the family Harding thought he knew.”
“An able, imaginative work of kinship and family.”
“Its colorful, insightful revelations about his adoptive parents and compelling discoveries about his birth mother give this slender memoir a special magic and beauty that will grip the reader long after the final page is turned.”