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Adopting Kari Grady Grossman

admin | Book Review | Sunday, 03 August 2008

Bones That Float

Bones That Flloat: A Story of Adopting Cambodia sets out to tell the story of Kari Grossman and her husband George, an American couple who, frustrated by their own reproductive limits, begin a journey into the wide and seemingly pointed universe to adopt a needy Cambodian boy living in a Phnom Pen orphanage. It is a powerful tale (as you can guess from simply reading the PR blurbs); An international adoptive mother gains more than the child she prays for, but an entire country, its history, its culture, its utter poverty and its deep-seeded social problems. But this book accomplishes much more than that.

In the world inhabited by Kari Grady Grossman, spirits hover, and visions of a magical, interconnected and immeasurable life-force guides and haunts this earthly existence. It is a beautifully crafted glimpse into the emotional and spiritual tensions that motivate every decision in human experience. What Grossman learns on her long and arduous journey is as ineffable as spirit itself, as fleeting as smoke. She does an outstanding job of describing the indescribable through her loving recreation of the facts (both physical and emotional), painted in broad strokes, until what is left is merely a residue of something seemingly as simple as the meaning of family, but more complex than human language can approach.

As Grossman struggles with matters of conscience, she is fearless in her storytelling. She sends her prayers for a wider understanding out into the universe, seeks in every corner of her own psyche, and remains undaunted when the answers turn out to be more difficult than the questions ever were.

Bones That Float has garnered impressive and well-deserved national attention with the presentation of two prestigious book awards: The Nautilus Book Award and the Independent Publishers Award. But what might be most impressive about Grossman’s e orts is the noble purpose that book’s proceeds go to promote. Because of the ties they have formed with their son’s native land, this couple feels an irrepressible sense of responsibility to the country that placed this human treasure into their hands. She and her husband have consequently created a school for underprivileged children in Cambodia.

The Grady Grossman School is named for her son, Eric Ratanak Grady Grossman. Located in an isolated rural village, the school educates nearly 500 children annually, with the main goals of the school being to give these children a strong primarylevel education, and in the process, to teach them ways to use their environment to sustain themselves without destroying it in the process. It is a book you’ll readily embrace, and a cause you will be inspired to support. Kari and George were recently named “Colorado Parents of the Year” by the Colorado Parent’s Day Council, an a liate of the American Family Coalition.

Bones That Float
is available at the book’s website,, or at your local bookstore, or through various online merchants (though buying direct from the website assures that more funds go to the school). ISBN-13: 978-0-9792493-0-3. It retails for $24.95 Hardcover.

Written By Derek Brou
Aisan Avenue magazine

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