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Preview — No Biking in the House Without a Helmet by Melissa Fay Greene
No Biking in the House Without a Helmet
The Joyous, Honest, and Compulsively Readable Account of a Great, Loving, Not-Uncomplicated, and Ever-Expanding Family
“This is my twenty-first year in elementary school,” the story begins. “For twenty-one years, I’ve carried in cupcakes, enclosed checks, and provided emergency phone numbers.”
The award-winning author Melissa Fay Greene and her husband, Don Samuel, an attorn...more
Greene had four biological children, and then got i ...more
Greene is a great non-fiction writer. Her style is easy to read and enjoyable. I liked the way in which she mixed family anecdotes with her personal journey of international adoption and larger i ...more
It's not a reason I understand, but that seemed to be her overriding concern.
This book is a rambling memoir of her trip through the adoption process, and while she has a few attachment struggles (which brought back some painful/sad memories for me), s ...more
No Biking in the House concerns the path one family took, pursuing multiple international adoptions as their children grew up and moved out ...more
The five star material includes her stellar descriptions of the adoption process for each child - the emotions involved with adoption and the humorous moments (I laughed out loud many times). I was also really moved by the one son who spent a lot of time in Ethiopia and devoted many months to just playing with the kids in various orp ...more
Melissa Fay Greene is a non-fiction journalist of repute, but this is more of a personal story of how and she and her family adopted 5 children from overseas. The beginning of the book is slower and more sombre, as she researches intercountry adoption and discusses the terrible effects of post-institutionalism on children. Anyone my age (40s) must surely remember the opening of those wicked wic ...more
There were many reasons to like the book. The first several chapters were laugh-out-loud funny. Then the mood changed greatly as the author and her husband began searching for a child to adopt, and then another and more from various third-world countries. Melissa Greene also introduces other families who have also adopted as they have. She writes well and with sensitivity and honesty of her family's experiences in their expansion.
Page 131, she gives a very interesting ...more
I'm the oldest of 10 children in an adoptive, mixed-race family. Greene has 4 birth children and 5 adopted children, and this memoir details how her family came together and the adoption stories of each child, along with stories of daily life in her family. Obviously this was deeply personal for me so it was wonderful to read such a familiar story that very few people understand. However, the book was also very well-written, engaging and fu ...more
As their 4 biological children get older and start leaving for college, Melissa and her husband Donny start adopting children from outside the U.S. In total, they adopt 5 children, giving them a total of 9 children.
I enjoyed it. It wasn’t quite as linear as I would have liked, but that’s really my only complaint. (The adoptions of the kids ...more
Although the reader's own experience (or lack of experience) with large families and/or the international adoption process would provide very different frameworks fo ...more
First, I had almost no trouble keeping track of who was who. That's hard, when you're writing about nine kids and two adults (and various friends and relatives and acquaintances). It helps, of course, that the characters are gradually introduced; the story is chronological, charting Greene's forays first into biological parenthood and then, tentatively, into adoption. Also interesting to see how differently the kids adapted, depending largely, it would app ...more
adopted boys from Ethiopia, and met Green at an Ethiopian Cultural Heritage Camp.
I’ve been wanting to read something of hers for a while and finally got my hands on
this book while we were visiting Ben and Heather in Kansas this summer. I knew I
liked her immediately as our own little (five kids!) family love things like
rollerblading in the house…
Greene and her husband had four children of their own when they bega ...more
Gotta love this woman, gotta read her book. Smart, witty, warm—in person and in print. Gr ...more
This book is hilarious. And anyone who is a parent, adopted or otherwise, would love this one! Melissa has a very unique and totally honest way of looking at parenting that had me going, "Yup! OMG, yup!!! LOL!"
The parts where she details her various children meeting birth parents was very ...more
The Samuels (Don is a criminal defense attorney, Melissa a writer) had four children, and ...more
Most of the book had me laughing--hard. Melissa has a way of phrasing things that can ...more