|For all foster children, adopted children,
and those who care for them
by Gabrielle Israelievitch, PhD
illustrations by Juliana Neufeld
A kitten named Littleprints has a confusing and sometimes scary life at home, though sometimes it's not so bad and sometimes it's even fun. One thing that's certain is that he never knows what to expect. Suddenly one day he is taken away from everyone and everything familiar. Like his siblings, he is taken from his home to live with strangers. For one reason then another, he is moved again and again. At one point, when he encounters one of his sisters, he tells her sadly: "I don't even remember what our parents smell like."
In Where's Home?, the author explores the feelings of children who have witnessed violence, experienced abuse or neglect, and have been taken from their homes. These children don't know how to think about what has happened to them. Where's Home? offers a way for them and for their foster or adoptive parents to think about very difficult issues. Adults and children alike will feel Littleprints' sadness, loss, fear, and confusion. This story is ultimately a story of hope. It will encourage empathy and understanding in all readers.
(While this story can be enjoyed for independent reading at the grade 3 level, the author strongly encourages that it be read aloud and shared over a number of sittings for children ages 5-12.)
64 pp, 18 drawings. Perfect-bound paperback $19.95.
20 Short Chapters:
- Littleprints Is Born
- Too Many Cats
- Between Snore and Slam
- Dream Floes
- The Marble
- The Wink
- About the Mice
- What the Mice Saw
- The Day the Bears Came
- The Longest Day in the World
- Strange New Faces
- The Club
- Then One Day
- The Cool Cats
- Little Prince
- The Fight
- Littleprints Reviews Things
- Speak, Dreams
- And There You May Be
Gabrielle Israelievitch, RSW, PhD, is a practicing child psychotherapist, visual artist, and writer. Previously, she was a teacher of deaf children. Her most recent publication is "Hiding and Seeking and Being Found: Reflections on the hide-and-seek game in the clinical playroom" (Journal of Infant, Child, and Adolescent Psychotherapy, 2008).
Juliana Neufeld, is an award-winning illustrator based in
Toronto. She is a regular contributor to The Globe and Mail.
Gabrielle Israelievitch has masterfully portrayed the complexities of family, government and interpersonal dynamics as she explores the often uncomfortable world of child abuse, foster care and adoption in "Where's Home?" Through the journey of Littleprints, a kitten born into a crowded and unstable family, she has created an epic, yet simple story that will resonate with children and adults on a similar path. I highly recommend this story to professionals, therapists, foster and adoptive parents, and of course, those children who, through no fault of their own, must navigate the frightening and lonely world of family violence and separation. In their hands, "Where's Home?" will provide a substantial measure of comfort.
—RITA L. SORONEN, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,
DAVE THOMAS FOUNDATION FOR ADOPTION
During childhood, almost every child will know another child who lives in a place other than
the home where he was born. Perhaps there was a divorce. Perhaps the family moved. Perhaps, even,
there was violence, drug or alcohol abuse, child neglect or child abuse, that forced outside authorities
to come and take the youngster away. Gabrielle Israelievitch gives us a storybook about this kind of “taken away” child, couched in
the metaphorical terms of kittenhood. The book and its wonderful illustrations spark empathy from
non-traumatized youngsters, teaching them kindness, understanding and care for peers. It sparks context
and correction in traumatized or neglected kids, helping them come to grips with their own
like stories. In all of us—the parent who reads to a child, the professional who works with a child,
or the child himself, whatever the circumstances—it gives a huge dose of hope.
I liked it a lot!
—LENORE C. TERR, MD,
CHILD TRAUMA SPECIALIST / AUTHOR, MAGICAL MOMENTS OF CHANGE
“Where’s Home?” is about a special kitten and his simple and complex, gentle and profound
story. It is a story for children (and their parents) who have experienced sadness and loss, fear and
confusion. It is also a story of hope—of movements toward a safe and joyful life that may be attained
through the resourcefulness of the mind and the comfort of special others.
I strongly recommend this book for foster and adopted children and those who care for them.
—DANIEL HUGHES, PhD,
CHILD TRAUMA & ATTACHMENT SPECIALIST / AUTHOR, BUILDING THE BONDS OF ATTACHMENT