Informational and Inspirational

Do Hard ThingsDo Hard Things: A Teenage Rebellion Against Low Expectations
by Alex and Brett Harris
The go-to book for teens who want to do big things and make a difference. Alex and Brett Harris encourage teens to ignore the culture’s low expectations and do hard things that will impact our world. If you need some inspiration or encouragement (or a kick in the pants!), this is a must read.



Orphan JusticeOrphan Justice: How to Care for Orphans Beyond Adopting
by Johnny Carr
This book delves into the social issues surrounding adoption. Think sex trafficking, HIV/AIDS, abortion, poverty, and more. It’s powerful. I would encourage younger teens to run this by their parents before reading.



Becoming HomeBecoming Home
by Jedd Medefind
Awesome 96 page overview of the orphan crisis, Christian responsibility to the crisis, and how to take action. If you want to read one book to get your feet wet and start learning about the topic, this would be a wonderful place to start. I got a free review copy from CAFO, and I’m so glad they made me aware of it.



Global Orphan Crisis, TheThe Global Orphan Crisis
by Diane Lynn Elliot
This book is statistic overload! If you want to get a good, big picture look at the issues, this should be your go-to book. It’s a little dry at times, but most of the information is interesting and well presented. And it’s not like it’s 300 solid pages of numbers. The author does a good job of exploring the varying issues surrounding orphans’ situations. If you’re serious about wanting to become educated about this topic, you’re going to want to have this book.


Adopt without Debt

Adopt Without Debt: Creative Ways to Cover the Cost of Adoption
by Julie Gumm
Adoptive mom Julie Gumm shares savings, earning, and fundraising tips for funding adoption. This book encourages families not to hold back because of the high costs associated with adopting. The author outlines how normal families can not only pay the fees, but do it debt free. I recommend this book to families considering adoption, already in the process, or individuals wanting to help adoption families.


The Connected Child

The Connected Child: Bring Hope and Healing to Your Adoptive Family
by Karyn B. Purvis
This book explores the reasons behind behaviors displayed by many adopted children. Dr. Karyn Purvis explains how coming from hard places affects children’s brain development and offers practical advice for how to parent children with these struggles. I found this book fascinating to read, even without having any personal experience with what was being discussed. I would recommend this book to any adoptive or perspective adoptive family, as well as to anyone seeking to gain a better understanding of children from hard places.


Successful AdoptionSuccessful Adoption: A Guide for Christian Families
by Natalie Nichols Gillespie
This is a great book to read to gain a foundation of knowledge about the adoption process. This 400 page book covers domestic (both foster and private) and international adoptions. It also contains extensive appendices listing various resources.





Silent Tears

Silent Tears
by Kay Bratt
Follow one woman’s journey to an orphanage in China. Kay Bratt shares her experiences volunteering in a Chinese, government funded institution. She relates her struggle to bring love and care to the children stuck in a dismal, often hopeless life. Her story is sure to be eye opening, even if you’ve already done quite a bit of reading about orphan care.


No Greater LoveNo Greater Love
by Levi Benkert
With his real estate business crumbling around him, Levi Benkert receives a call about children being killed in Ethiopia. Mingi children are killed as part of a tribal superstition that claims the children will bring evil spirits to their tribe if allowed to remain there. They want to know if Levi can help. After a short visit, he knows he has to go back. Read the true story of the Benkerts journey to Ethiopia, and make sure you pack some tissues for the trip.


Kisses from KatieKisses from Katie: A Story of Relentless Love and Redemption
by Katie Davis
Katie Davis was just eighteen years old when she first went to Uganda. The missions trip would change her life. Unable to keep her heart and mind in the states, Katie decided to go back to Uganda for a year, and after that year she knew she couldn’t return to life in American. (Note: I was apprehensive about this book because the synopsis says Katie “disobeyed” her parents in her decision to stay in Uganda. In actuality, her parents encouraged her to complete college but eventually agreed to her desire to remain in Uganda and are her greatest supporters.)


Saving LeviSaving Levi: Left to Die . . . Destined to Live
by Lisa Misraje Bentley
A baby boy abandoned in a field, 70% of his body covered in burns, meets an American family serving as missionaries in China. The Bentleys saw God’s hand in each step of their journey as they became Levi’s advocates and family and watched his story united people from around the world.



Small Town, Big MiracleSmall Town, Big Miracle: How Love Came to the Least of These
by W.C. Martin
In the town of Possum Trot, Texas, the prayers of a pastor and his wife lead them on a journey to adopt four children. Somewhere along the way, their church of around 200 people caught the vision and started their own adoption journeys. This is the story of how their church adopted more than 72 children.



No Longer a SlumdogNo Longer a Slumdog: Bringing Hope to Children in Crisis
by K. P. Yohannan
This book shares the stories of desperate children living in India, where the cast system still sentences many to a life of poverty and vulnerability. The book is written to complement Gospel for Asia’s sponsorship program and sometimes places an emphasis on this effort, but is well worth reading whether or not you plan to sponsor a child.





Red Thread SistersRed Thread Sisters
by Carol Antoinette Peacock
Wen and her best friend, Shu Ling, have a deal. Whoever gets adopted first will find a family for the one left behind. When Wen finds her forever family and travels to America, she discovers her promise will be difficult to keep.




Suggest More

I’m always looking for new books to add to this list. If I missed your favorite orphan/adoption related book (fiction or non-fiction) please contact me and share the title!

Read Reviews

I occasionally write book reviews for the TIO blog. If you’re interested in more books and my opinions about them, check it out.

Leave a comment


  1. Spencer R.

     /  February 25, 2014

    Adopted for Life ( really helped my family as we were preparing for adoption. A great resource for parents thinking about adoption.


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