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The Pink Bonnet: True Colors: Historical Stories of American Crime

(True Colors)

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  180 ratings  ·  150 reviews
A Desperate Mother Searches for Her Child
Step into True Colors -- a new series of Historical Stories of Romance and American Crime

Widowed in Memphis during 1932, Cecile Dowd is struggling to provide for her three-year-old daughter. Unwittingly trusting a neighbor puts little Millie Mae into the clutches of Georgia Tann, corrupt Memphis Tennessee Children’s Home Society di
Paperback, 256 pages
Published June 1st 2019 by Barbour Books
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4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  180 ratings  ·  150 reviews

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Valerity (Val)
This is the second in a series of historical romance/mystery books, with the first one I read being The White City. The Pink Bonnet is set in the time of The Depression 1932 and centers on a young widow Cecile and her three-year-old Millie Mae. Struggling to support them, Cecile leaves Millie with a neighbor while she looks for full-time employment, but when she returns to pick her up Millie is gone. She’s been taken to the Tennessee Children’s Home Society as some part of an adoption situation. ...more
May 12, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
I love the premise of this series in basing stories upon true crimes. The Pink Bonnet is the second one in the series. I was previously exposed to the crimes of Georgia Tann through a novel by Lisa Wingate. Simply horrendous what happened to children and families at the hands of one woman over decades. While the crime itself is fascinating, I found some details of the fictional story line to not be fully plausible. Overall, it was a good novel and I look forward to the next in the series.

My grat
Carla Johnson-Hicks
This book is part of the True Colors series of Historical Crimes written by different authors. This is the story of Georgia Tann, the Director of the Tennessee Children's Home Society in the 1930s. I had previous read a book about this despicable time and crime, but this was a very different story. In this book, three year old Millie Dowd is signed over to Georgia Tann by a neighbour who is babysitting her while her mother is out looking for a better job. Cecile is a single mom, barely making en ...more
Debra Slonek
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019-reads
In Memphis Tennessee, during 1933, Cecile has already suffered great loss and is struggling to stay afloat. A nightmare begins as she loses what is most precious to her, 3 year old Millie. As she tries to locate and reclaim Millie, she uncovers an evil network of epic proportions. The currency in this evil network is stolen children.

The director of an adoption agency, Georgia Tann, enjoys the power she has over others and is always busy making others miserable. Pretty sure she has liquid evil ru
Having read Lisa Wingate's book, Before We Were Yours, I was familiar with the abhorrent story of Georgia Tann and the Tennessee Children's Home Society. This story is written from the perspective of one mother whose child was taken and who is fighting to find her child. I read this story in a long, late night because I couldn't put it down. It is very much a plot-driven book. Cecile and Percy, a lawyer for Georgia Tann who definitely feels there is something rotten in Denmark, join forces to fi ...more
Victoria Goodbrand
May 23, 2019 marked it as to-read
i can’t even. this author totally copied Lisa Wingate’s “Before We Were Yours”. 😠😭
i’m still maybe going to read it.
just to compare. 👀
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Heartbreaking! Georgia Tann, corrupt Memphis Tennessee Children’s Home Society director, destroyed many families. This true crime is so shocking! Once you begin reading, you won't want to stop.

I borrowed a copy from my local library. All views expressed are my honest opinion.
Paula Shreckhise
The Pink Bonnet by Liz Tolsma is the second book in the series True Colors, Historical Stories of American Crime by Barbour Publishing.
Liz Tolsma has captured the flavor of 1933 Memphis, Tennessee and has built a story around the scandal that rocked many people’s lives. She has brought to life the despicable acts of the infamous Georgia Tann of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society.
This book is like watching an old black and white Film Noir, complete with a shiny black Cadillac limousine and a
4.5 stars

When I first heard about this series, True Colors: Historical Stories of American Crime, I was intrigued. When I started reading The Pink Bonnet, I was immediately captivated by this riveting story of the ugly crime that affected so many families for so many years. While Cecile Down and Percy Vance are fictional characters, their story reflects the heartache that was inflicted by Georgia Vance and the corrupt politicians that were complicit with the Tennessee Children's Home Society. Va
Maureen Timerman
Apr 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
This book plays hard on your emotions, sadness, anger, and wanting revenge, and all because of what a powerful woman does to families and children. In her time in Tennessee she is suspected of stealing over 5000 children, and when I think of the loss to the parents, grandparents, siblings and extended family, so many hurting people, and all for greed.
This is a fictional account, but it could be so true, and there are several real people named here, and they are all complacent and are fine with d
Jun 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
After finishing Liz Tolsma’s “The Pink Bonnet”, book two in the True Colors series, my opinions are mixed. This story needs and deserves to be told, and yet the grimness of it is oppressive, truly making it difficult fodder. Prior to this novel, I knew of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society by name only, so this story was shockingly enlightening. As with so many appalling events throughout history, this one seems incredulous in its scope and longevity. Targeting victims who were poor and vulne ...more
First sentence: "Momma, Momma, watch me."

Premise/plot: Love true crime stories? Love historical fiction? Enjoy Christian fiction? The Pink Bonnet is the second book in the True Colors series published by Barbour Books. Each book in the series focuses on an American crime. The Pink Bonnet focuses on the case of Georgia Tann and the Tennessee Children's Home Society.

Cecile Dowd is a widow struggling to raise her three year old daughter, Millie. But even on the hardest days, Cecile would never, eve
Yvette (bookworlder)
The Pink Bonnet by Liz Tolsma is the second book in a new multi-author series from Barbour Books, True Colors: Historical Stories of Romance and American Crime, that weaves true crime into a new work of Historical Fiction. Set in 1933, this story centers around the notorious Georgia Tann who trafficked children through her role as the director of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society.

Cecilia Dowd learns first hand that Georgia Tann will use any means necessary to acquire children to sell in her
May 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Pink Bonnet is a gripping story that kept the pages turning and tugged at my emotions. This fictional historical book is based on the horrendous crime of Georgia Tann in Memphis, Tennessee when she ran an adoption agency. She obtained children by kidnapping or having birth parents sign papers when they did not understand they were terminating their rights.

Liz Tolsma brought Cecile Dowd, a young widow, story to life with the kidnapping of her child Millie, after a neighbor forged her name on
Susan F
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc
The Pink Bonnet is the story of the lives ruined by Georgia Tann. Tann ran the Tennesse Children's home from 1924 to 1950. During that time, she stole thousands of children and sold them off to the highest bidder. This story is a fictional representation of what that was like for one mom - Cecile Dowd. Cecile was a widow doing her best to raise her daughter, Millie, on her own. Thanks to a nosey neighbor, Tann found out about their situation and took Millie.

I have read other novels about Tann an
May 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arcs
This is the second book in the True Colors series by Barbour Books. These are Historical Christian romance history lessons. They take real events and weave them into a story that we can all relate to.

This is a story I think we can all relate to even if we don’t have children. A woman goes out one day to try and find a better job and leaves her small child with an elderly neighbor. When she returns home the neighbor has signed away her rights to the child and give her to the Memphis Tennessee Chi
Karen R
Mar 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"...there was nothing like a mother’s love, other than God’s love for His own children. Fierce. Determined. Protective."

Memphis, Tennessee in 1933 was a dangerous place for young children, especially those from poor families. This well-written tale based on the true crimes of Georgia Tann and her Tennessee Children's Home Society was heart wrenching, yet not without hope.

The determination of Cecile to find her missing daughter was amazing. I like how the author parallels that to God's love for
Susan Snodgrass
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Pink Bonnet is a fictionalized account of the infamous Georgia Tann, who ran the Tennessee Children's Home and destroyed an incredible number of lives. From the late 1920s to 1950, Tann stole, kidnapped and took by any means necessary thousands and thousands of children from poor families and sold them to those who wanted children, mostly wealthy parents, some she sold cheaply to farmers for slave labor. It was an incredible time in our history. I am pretty sure that no parent ever found and ...more
Best In Suspense - Kelly Underwood
The Pink Bonnet is part of a series of true crimes stories. Set in the 1930’s, the novel portrays the scandal with the Tennessee Children’s Home Society and Georgia Tann. Based on a true story, Tann ran an adoption scam and was kidnapping children and selling them to the highest bidder. The story focuses on Cecile Dowd, who’s daughter was given up for adoption without her consent. She hunts down her daughter with the help of attorney Percy Vance, while no one believes that Tann would do such hei ...more
Jun 01, 2019 rated it liked it
This is the second in the True Colors series, novels of historical American crime. This one deals with a woman who ran an adoption agency in Tennessee from 1924 to 1950. It is estimated she kidnapped five thousand children and sold them to the highest bidder. Tolsma did a good job of imagining Cecile, whose child was taken deceptively in 1933 and then adopted out. We see the length a mother would go to find her daughter.

There is lots of suspense in this novel as Cecile teams up with a fellow. I
Jun 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2019
This book is a bit different from the other historical fiction I’ve read by Liz Tolsma. It involves the true crimes committed by a Georgia Tann in abducting children and selling them to the highest bidder between 1924-1950 in Tennessee and focuses on one fictional young widow who loses her three year old daughter to Ms. Tann in 1933. Cecile is barely getting by after the death of her husband but loves her daughter Millie and does her best to care for her. Millie, at three years of age, is rambun ...more
Mar 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an awesome book!! The author makes you feel like you are there. You can feel all of the emotions and see the scenes play out in your mind. Once you start reading, you can't put it down. If you are looking for book that will keep you on the edge of your seat, grab this book!! I highly recommend this book to everyone who loves christian historical fiction. Thank you Barbour Publishing via NetGalley for the ARC copy of this book. This is my honest opinion.
Kivalina Gwynn
Mar 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Cecile is a good Mom . She is doing her best with 3 year old Millie Mae . Husband has died and money is tight. She leaves her little girl with a old neighbor lady just for a short time to find a better paying job. This is the biggest mistake of her life. Along comes the Mean Miss Tann... You will need to read as I do now want to spoil it.
I got this book for a honest review from Netgally. Honestly, I loved it. Honestly I been searching about this since
.Oh what a sad thing..
May 12, 2019 rated it liked it
While I was excited to read this, I was a little disappointed because it took a long time to draw me in. I had a really hard time getting into this book and had a hard time sticking with it. I liked the concept of this story. I found the secondary characters a bit more fascinating. I am looking forward to reading more of this series.

I was given a complimentary copy of this ebook from the author, but was not required to write a review. The thoughts and comments are my own.
Chautona Havig
Jun 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
What Happens When You Explore the Ugly Side of “Adoption?”
Written with careful attention to historical detail, The Pink Bonnet does more than chronicle a young mother’s desperate search for her child. It also shows a subtle picture of God’s relentless pursuit of His own children, ready to rescue each one from Satan’s clutches.

If it sounds cruel to compare Georgia Tann to Satan, well… you’ve got to read the book.

Lord Acton’s words about absolute power corrupting absolutely shows in the way Tolsma
Kaitlyn Krispense
Jun 18, 2019 rated it it was ok
I wanted to push three stars. but as I sat here trying to think of why I liked it . . . I found few reasons somehow?

Don't get me wrong - it was a good book, as far as content goes. There wasn't really anything that should cause a lower rating. Except for the fact that I just . . . didn't really like it. I wanted to. I tried. But sometimes there's just those books that you can't like. This was one of them.

First of all, it never really caught my interest. But of course, being a review copy, I had
Jun 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: celebratelit
The Pink Bonnet is a riveting novel of faith that grabbed me from the first page and held my attention throughout. It is based on a real woman who plotted crimes similar to those in this tale. It is at once heartbreaking and intriguing, most characters are appealing, and the type of crimes committed part of a terrible crime spree spanning almost 30 years of the early 1900’s in and around Memphis, Tennessee. I appreciate the author sharing some of the historical background and who the real-life c ...more
Sandra "Jeanz"
Mar 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, netgalley
The first thing that caught my interest about this book was the cover, the stark dark background, the homemade looking wooden rocking crib. The only colour on the cover being the pink bonnet which plays an important part in this story. I think the cover definitely does its job by pulling you in making you want to know where the child is and what has happened. The blurb then goes on catching and pulling you in more, which consequently pushes you into having a grave concern for the child who
Lorrea - WhatChaReadin'?
Cecile Dowd is a single mother, just trying to keep life together in 1933 for her and her three year old daughter Millie. Cecile is a widow and it's the great depression. Without her husband, it's difficult to always control Millie's behavior and make sure there is enough food on the table. Cecile decides she needs to get another job to help make things easier. While she goes out looking, she leaves Millie with a neighbor. When she returns to pick up Millie at the end of the day, Millie is gone. ...more
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Liz Tolsma has lived in Wisconsin most of her life, and she now resides next to a farm field with her husband, their son, and their two daughters. All of their children have been adopted internationally and one has special needs. Her novella, Under His Wings, appeared in the New York Times bestselling collection, A Log Cabin Christmas. Her debut novel, Snow on the Tulips, released in August of 201 ...more

Other books in the series

True Colors (5 books)
  • The White City (True Colors)
  • The Yellow Lantern: True Colors: Historical Stories of American Crime
  • The Gray Chamber
  • The Blue Cloak (True Colors)