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A Thousand Voices

by Lisa Wingate

      Lisa Wingate is one of my favorite authors and she did not disappoint me with her newest book A Thousand Voices.

A Thousand Voices is both heartbreaking and full of joy. Lisa Wingate writes powerfully and with great wisdom and insight. Her writing is sharp and observant, every page is filled with human emotion. A Thousand Voices is a truly touching story. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I highly recommend it to others.

Dell Jordan is adopted by Karen and James Sommerfield when she's twelve years old. Suddenly she has the family she has always longed for. Her birth mother was a drug addict who died from a drug overdose, and Dell's life had been full of trauma. But now she has a new life in Kansas City with James and Karen, and an education from an arts high school so she can pursue her love of music. Dell has buried her past and continues to try and forget it ever happened.

After graduating from high school Dell traveled to Europe for a year in a student musical exchange orchestra, and then went on to the Ukraine for a term of teaching English and Music in a mission project for orphaned children. Dell's time there was over way too soon and it was time for her to return home, college was waiting.

There is a part of Dell that not even her loving adoptive family can penetrate. She continues to feel unsettled and restless, as if there's somewhere else she needs to be. Her past stands between her and everything else. Even after spending two years wandering the world trying to find herself, she still feels lost. She has a family, a home, and college to look forward to. But that emptiness inside her continues to grow larger by the day. She needs to find answers to the old memories that still haunt her, the insecurities that still plague her and the unanswered questions she has about her heritage.

Dell heads to the Choctaw Nation Offices in Oklahoma to search for her birth records. She hopes to locate her biological father, Thomas Clay. Along the way she meets the Reid family (also of the Choctaw tribe) and feels an instant bond with them. She becomes fast friends with Shasta Williams and begins to develop a relationship with Shasta's older brother, Jace Reid.

After encountering several disappointments along the way Dell finds much more in Oklahoma than she ever imagined possible. She finally gets those long awaited answers to the questions she has had for such a long time. She discovers which direction she wants her life to take now. As Dell leaves the Choctaw Council to return to Kansas City, life is suddenly full, gone is the emptiness; her life is now full of new things, new dreams, new hope.

The Book

NAL Accent/Penguin Group USA
July 3, 2007
978-0-451-22129-2 / 0-41-2129-X
Fiction / General
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The Reviewer

Connie Harris
Reviewed 2007
© 2006