Parents' Guide to

Home at Last

By Jan Carr, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 5+

Fears faced openly when loving dads adopt older boy.

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In this sensitive portrait of a loving and recognizably human family facing very real challenges, an older boy's adopted by two dads and has trouble trusting he won't be yanked from his new home. Author Vera Williams excels at joyously inclusive portraits of hardworking families. (Her classic A Chair for My Mother, still immensely popular, celebrated a girl and single mom struggling after a fire.) Chris Raschka illustrates Home at Last with much the same bright splashes of color that characterized William's own art.

What distinguishes Home at Last is the honest detail, the acknowledgement that there are no easy answers or quick fixes. It takes a year for the dads to adopt. Lester's neediness persists, trying the family, and Daddy Albert, who can be loving and supportive, has a fiery temper. But Williams is deft at the touching detail. When the dads make cocoa for Lester in the wee hours, and when Lester playfully rams his head into Daddy Rich's belly, we know these humans are trying their best to forge a family and are lucky to have found each other.

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