- Bringing Adam Home: The Abduction That Changed America by Les Standiford - I picked this book up on a whim when I saw it on a display at the library. I am too young to remember Adam Walsh's abduction personally, but growing up with America's Most Wanted, I was fascinated with the case. I did not realize until I read this book that Adam Walsh was actually only 3 months or so older than me. That made the story hit home that much more. This book is an attempt to explain how the investigation went so wrong for so many years and how it was finally solved. After it was revealed a few years ago that the suspect that appeared and was dismissed in the early 80s actually DID do the crime and that no new evidence came to light, people were skeptical. What the book explains is that the evidence was not new, but had not been noticed during the original investigation. I found the book interesting, but frustrating on several levels.The crucial piece of evidence is mentioned at the end of the book, but it is not revealed what that evidence is for several pages (for dramatic effect, I suppose). The problem with that is that the crucial piece of evidence is included in the photographs in the middle of the book so I already knew about it by that point in the book. Also, it is repeatedly mentioned that the Adam Walsh case changed America. Not only do we now have Code Adam alerts in stores (when a child is missing within a store), but parents no longer allow their children to play outside alone and distrust strangers. The author implies that these are good changes, and glosses over the fact that only 200 children per year are taken by strangers. Of course this number sounds scary - but how many millions of children live in this country? Most kidnappings (and abuse) are by people the child and family knows and trusts. (This all reminds me of Free Range Kids by Lenore Skenazy, which I reviewed some time ago.) I also read several reviews that the book was dry and too procedural or was too free with scintillating details (it's about a child murder - what did they expect?), but I didn't find it dry at all. I don't think this book is for everyone, though, and there were several times they hair on my arms stood up. Read with caution (suggested for older teens and up if anyone younger is reading this).
Library Books I Picked Up This Week:
- Nurtureshock: New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman
- Radical Homemakers: Reclaiming Domesticity from a Consumer Culture by Shannon Hayes
- No Plot? No Problem: A Low-Stress, High-Velocity Guide to Writing a Novel by Chris Baty
- Bringing Adam Home: The Abduction That Changed America by Les Standiford