- N. N. Light
I Must Have Wandered is a Best Books of '22 pick #creativenonfiction #memoir #giveaway
Title: I Must Have Wandered: An Adopted Air Force Daughter Recalls
Author: Mary Ellen Gambutti
Genre: Memoir/Creative Nonfiction
In this vivid hybrid memoir--a lyrical collage of vignettes, vintage and contemporary correspondence and photos--the author illuminates her Post-World War II SC birth, relinquishment, adoption by a military service couple. Through the turbulent 1960s, she defines and defies the barriers to identity set by adoption law, her father's Air Force Intelligence career, family transience, and religious fervency. At forty, she begins to gather fragments of her biological heritage in this heartfelt story of loss, a quest, recovery of self, and reunion.
“...I’ve dreamed of phantoms — others. I am here. Where are you? None of my adoptive family members are like me in face or feature. I tell my playground friends, “They aren’t my real parents. I have another mother.” Not this mother. Another one. I hear myself tell them, and as I do, I deepen my thoughts. I ruminate, through this filter of myth, miracle, and mystery, a notion that I appeared from nowhere. In my teens, I would daydream that a sister or a brother — real family — would pass me in a department store, and we would recognize each other. In Sears, by the popcorn machine, I see a girl who looks like me. I stare at her. I look away. Does she recognize me? Does anyone see me?...”
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The e-book is on sale through the New Year for $2.99 at most digital vendors, and at Smashwords End-of-Year sale, for $1.49.
What makes your featured book a must-read?
"Gambutti narrates the complicated journey to restoring her identity after adoption...readers will be enlightened by Gambutti's portrayal of an adoptee's pervasive feelings of loss, impermanence, and abandonment. The book will be of special interest to adoptees, but all readers will benefit from the wisdom of her experience, and her devout pursuit of self-knowledge."-- Self-Publishing Review
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Mary Ellen’s has a lyrical writing style, with topics as diverse as her adoption by a military couple, her 1950s and ‘60s childhood, her search and discovery of her biological family, her gardening career, and her survival of a hemorrhagic stroke at age fifty-eight. Her personal essays are published in many literary journals. She and her husband live in Delaware with their rescued senior chihuahua, and a tiny toy poodle puppy.
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