American Family

Jon Galluccio, Author, Michael Galluccio, Author, Michael Galluccio, Joint Author
Jon Galluccio, Author, Michael Galluccio, Author, Michael Galluccio, Joint Author St. Martin's Press $24.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-312-26123-8
Reviewed on: 02/01/2001
Release date: 02/01/2001
Paperback - 288 pages - 978-0-312-28887-7
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Written by two gay men whose court challenge helped rewrite New Jersey law to allow joint adoption by unmarried couples, this moving, often funny and sometimes quite poignant memoir explores the emotional, psychological and legal battles that gay couples (and unmarried heterosexual couples) often face when dealing with issues of foster care, adoption and social intolerance. In 1995, Michael Galluccio and Jon Holden, who had been partners for 16 years, became foster parents to Adam, an HIV+ infant who was also addicted to heroin, cocaine and alcohol. After they nursed him through his first years, their desire to adopt him was thwarted by state law that did not allow gay (and unmarried straight) couples to co-adopt. The story of how they won their case is only one thread of this engrossing story, for during this time the Galluccios (Jon changed his last name so that their son would have a single name ) also took into foster care and then adopted another at-risk infant as well as that child's 18-year-old sister, who was pregnant. By the end of the book, the Gallucios have become the parents of three children and grandfathers to one. Concurrently, Jon, who was himself adopted, tells the story of his search for his biological mother. Written in a direct, compelling style, the Galluccios' story offers an engaging glimpse into the increasingly complex institution of the family, and should appeal to those who have been touched by adoption, as well as to gay and lesbian readers. (Feb.)
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