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From Barnes & NobleBarnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers
It isn't often that we find a heartrending book about a man trying to balance work and family life. But in his remarkable memoir, journalist Neely Tucker recounts the overwhelming obstacles he and his wife, Vita, faced while trying to adopt an abandoned newborn. Tucker was a foreign correspondent based in Zimbabwe in 1997, when the true extent of the AIDS crisis was just becoming evident. One of its legacies was a huge increase in the number of African orphans and abandoned children (over 10 million) as young parents fell victim to the disease. Neely and Vita volunteer at an orphanage, where they meet the dehydrated, dying Chipo (whose name means "gift"), and they decide to try to adopt her. Their plan, however, is thwarted by a government fiercely opposed to foreign adoptions.
Indifferent bureaucrats refuse the Tuckers' requests for appointments and routinely lose their file. Problems escalate when Robert Mugabe's government begins to arrest journalists for publishing unflattering articles. And Tucker realizes that anything he writes could eliminate his chance to adopt the little girl who has stolen his heart.
An endearing memoir, Love in the Driest Season succeeds as political history, and as a unique exploration of race relations. Ultimately, it will steal readers' hearts. (Winter/Spring 2004 Selection)