She Is Mine: A War Orphans' Incredible Journey of Survival Info

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Reviews for She Is Mine: A War Orphans' Incredible Journey of Survival:

4

Jan 14, 2015

I have a four-year-old.

I can't imagine him being abandoned, left to fend for himself, desperately following train tracks to try to find his mommy, chewing on roots and grasshoppers to survive, being rejected and persecuted for his ethnic make-up anytime he encounters other people.

I have a seven-year-old daughter. I can't imagine her learning at this tender age "that there was a price for the clothes, food, protection, and the privilege of sitting at the fire" (141).

I really don't like thinking I have a four-year-old.

I can't imagine him being abandoned, left to fend for himself, desperately following train tracks to try to find his mommy, chewing on roots and grasshoppers to survive, being rejected and persecuted for his ethnic make-up anytime he encounters other people.

I have a seven-year-old daughter. I can't imagine her learning at this tender age "that there was a price for the clothes, food, protection, and the privilege of sitting at the fire" (141).

I really don't like thinking about the horrible crimes humans commit against one another, especially when the victims are innocent children. But the truth is, they happen. Stephanie Fast shared her story as a mixed race
American-Korean in the aftermath of the Korean war until she was adopted and came to know acceptance and belonging in a family and ultimately as a child of God.

This was a quick read, I read it in one afternoon, but be warned: it will make your heart hurt and you'll likely be left asking yourself what you can do to help children caught in a similar situation. ...more
5

Sep 10, 2016

Wow, what an excellent book. Thank you, Stephanie, for so openly sharing your story. You tell of such great pain but with equally great hope. Thank you for raising awareness of the needs of orphans.
4

Jan 21, 2019

Im glad I read this. Its a fascinating, horrifying, moving, and ultimately hopeful look into the life of an abandoned Korean orphan.

My main complaint with this book is that it climaxes with Stephanie receiving American citizenship and feeling a sense of belonging like never before. Citizenship in an earthly nation is such an impersonal thing and relatively meaningless, especially compared with adoption by actual people who love you, or citizenship in Gods kingdom, and I wish that had been the I’m glad I read this. It’s a fascinating, horrifying, moving, and ultimately hopeful look into the life of an abandoned Korean orphan.

My main complaint with this book is that it climaxes with Stephanie receiving American citizenship and feeling a sense of belonging like never before. Citizenship in an earthly nation is such an impersonal thing and relatively meaningless, especially compared with adoption by actual people who love you, or citizenship in God’s kingdom, and I wish that had been the focus of ending instead.

I would like to learn more about her experience with her adopted family and her process of bonding and emotional healing, especially since that’s where most of the real work of adopting a child like this would start. It would be helpful for people considering adoption or trying to support friends who are adopting to have a better understanding of that challenging process. Maybe in a future book? ...more
5

Jan 30, 2016

Stephanie Fast's She is Mine is a compelling, unforgettable memoir of a Korean war-orphan.

Her father, whom she never met, was an American soldier. He returned to the U.S. unaware that he was going to be a father. Her mother, ashamed and embarrassed, returned to her family. Initially beloved of her mother, the author was shunned by the rest of the family and shunned by the community in which she spent her early years. Eventually, her mother gave into the family pressure and abandoned her. The Stephanie Fast's She is Mine is a compelling, unforgettable memoir of a Korean war-orphan.

Her father, whom she never met, was an American soldier. He returned to the U.S. unaware that he was going to be a father. Her mother, ashamed and embarrassed, returned to her family. Initially beloved of her mother, the author was shunned by the rest of the family and shunned by the community in which she spent her early years. Eventually, her mother gave into the family pressure and abandoned her. The author was--at the age of four--put on a train and sent away. Told that "an uncle" would welcome her at the end of the line, the truth was she would never see her family again, never find her way back "home."

She had the clothes on her back, and, a day's worth of food. But how can a four-year-old survive on her own? But survive she did. The book chronicles the years--three or four years, I believe--she spent surviving, leading an uncertain, always desperate existence. Sometimes wandering in the country, in the fields; sometimes wandering into villages and cities. Usually her encounters with other people were negative. It went beyond her early-years experience of name-calling and "shunning." She was beaten. She was tortured. She was left to die. And yet. There were a few people who treated her kindly, with grace, who emphatically declared you must survive.

The memoir goes to really dark, really ugly places. I won't lie. Some of what she endured is horrifying and the fact that she was able to survive is a miracle.

She is Mine is ABOUT adoption, about the need for adoption, about how life-changing and amazing adoption can be. It's about adoption-as-redemption and redemption-as-adoption.

For anyone who enjoys nonfiction, this one is a must read. ...more
5

Nov 25, 2014

Given To Me For An Honest Review

She Is Mine: A War Orphan's Incredible Journey of Survival by Stephanie Fast isn't a must read it's a HAVE to read. This book will grab you, have you one the edge of your seat and have your turn page after page, after page and turning more pages. You won't stop until the end. It is about a young Korean girl who falls in love with an American soldier. He returns to America and she is left pregnant. She has her baby and her family are in shock because the baby is Given To Me For An Honest Review

She Is Mine: A War Orphan's Incredible Journey of Survival by Stephanie Fast isn't a must read it's a HAVE to read. This book will grab you, have you one the edge of your seat and have your turn page after page, after page and turning more pages. You won't stop until the end. It is about a young Korean girl who falls in love with an American soldier. He returns to America and she is left pregnant. She has her baby and her family are in shock because the baby is "tougee" - biracial. No one wants anything to do with the child. When the child is four her mother is forced to take her and leave her somewhere, the family no longer wants to have her with them or want to continue to take care of her. So her mother takes her to the train station and abandons her there. Yoon Myoung leaves the station and decides to look for her mother. She travels for several years looking. She suffers horribly. People were very cruel to her. She is "tougee". Will Yoon Myoung find her mother? Will she ever be able to live a better life? Will she know love and trust? The end is very surprising. I loved this book. I gave this book 5 stars but it deserves many, many more. This is one book that would be perfect for your bookshelf and I highly recommend it to everyone. I look forward to more from Stephanie Fast.
...more
5

Apr 03, 2019

Continuing on the theme of refugees, we add the latest book. This was, without a doubt, the most horrifying book Ive ever read; horrifying as in moving you to righteous pity and outrage, not schmut. The story is about an illegitimate Korean child of an American soldier and Korean worker after the Vietnam War who is abandoned by her mother at 5 years old and shunned by her country for her bi-racial identity. The horror she goes through is enough, but if you factor in the fact that she was 5 years Continuing on the theme of refugees, we add the latest book. This was, without a doubt, the most horrifying book I’ve ever read; horrifying as in moving you to righteous pity and outrage, not schmut. The story is about an illegitimate Korean child of an American soldier and Korean worker after the Vietnam War who is abandoned by her mother at 5 years old and shunned by her country for her bi-racial identity. The horror she goes through is enough, but if you factor in the fact that she was 5 years old, the narrative is haunting. Written by the main character (who now lives in Spokane). ...more
5

Nov 27, 2014

Imagine. Imagine that everyone around you treats you differently from others. Imagine that they call you "tougee" and even though you don't understand what the word means, you know how it makes you feel. Imagine that you are abandoned by your family, left on a train...alone. Imagine that you have to make your way in the world and that nobody will help you. Imagine that you have to survive harsh winters, dig up, catch or steal food and make clothes out of straw for warmth. Now imagine that at the Imagine. Imagine that everyone around you treats you differently from others. Imagine that they call you "tougee" and even though you don't understand what the word means, you know how it makes you feel. Imagine that you are abandoned by your family, left on a train...alone. Imagine that you have to make your way in the world and that nobody will help you. Imagine that you have to survive harsh winters, dig up, catch or steal food and make clothes out of straw for warmth. Now imagine that at the start of your journey you are only four years old.


In her new book She is Mine, author Stephanie Fast takes her readers on an emotional roller coaster as she describes in horrifying detail the trying ordeal she endured as a young girl struggling to survive in South Korea following the Korean War. The daughter of an American soldier and an unwed Korean mother, this nameless child is unwanted and unwelcomed not just by her family, but by everyone she meets.

As you read this account, you will not help but become emotionally involved in the story, turning page after page, praying for a good outcome, for someone to take notice. As a parent your heart will ache for this child, for the physical and emotional trauma she suffers and the innocence that is lost. You will shed tears of sorrow as you are reminded of the tender young age of the one suffering. You will want to hold onto your own children tightly and vow again to shield them from all the darkness of this world. As a human being you will be enraged at the countless abuses she endures by total strangers simply because she was born of the wrong parents. Through it all, your soul will give thanks as you see the hand of Providence in the rare kindnesses shown and rejoice as she comes to know the One Who loved her when nobody else did.

In many ways, this book would be at home on a shelf in the “Horror” section of a book store because it is truly a horror story. It is also a story of survival, of living, when it seems impossible. Perhaps, the most compelling (and the most horrifying thing) about it is that it is a true story. It really happened. It still happens today. Ms. Fast writes “At this moment, there are an estimated 143 million orphans throughout the world who have been abandoned or abused. All are crying out or a caring person to deliver them from the hands of their oppressors.”

If you are not prepared to be moved… if you are not prepared to be shaken to the core with abundant emotion, do not read this book. However, if you are willing to open your mind to the plight of millions of children, then pick up this book. Sit down, open it, read it, weep, mourn and prepare to be changed as your mind is made aware not just of tragedy but also of hope that exists all around you.
...more
5

Feb 15, 2018

This is such an important book! The story was gripping and fast-paced. Some parts were hard to read, but this was her reality. The author is brave to tell this story, and I'm so glad she did.
5

Jan 26, 2015

This is the story of a young girl rejected because of her parentage. Her mother is Korean and her father an American G.I. In a country torn apart by war and with a strong cultural emphasis on family and history, little Yoon Myoung is seen as a mistake -- an outcast. Fortunately, God does not judge us by man's standards.

Left to fend for herself at the tender age of four, Yoon Myoung survives by sheer grit, optimism and the unbreakable spirit of a child. But, even the strongest warrior heart can This is the story of a young girl rejected because of her parentage. Her mother is Korean and her father an American G.I. In a country torn apart by war and with a strong cultural emphasis on family and history, little Yoon Myoung is seen as a mistake -- an outcast. Fortunately, God does not judge us by man's standards.

Left to fend for herself at the tender age of four, Yoon Myoung survives by sheer grit, optimism and the unbreakable spirit of a child. But, even the strongest warrior heart can eventually be broken by a cruel and unrelentingly painful life.

Yoon Myoung's life is spared multiple times by what Christians would say were miracles; interventions by a loving God to help this child endure and eventually, thrive.


I'm not gonna lie -- this book is painful to read. As a mother, I found the story tearing at my heart multiple times. I wanted to rail against a bigoted and unfair world that at times, seemed determined to destroy this child. She is starved, abused, rejected, ignored, tortured, and left for dead. She witnesses things no child should have to see.

This book will make you want to *do something* to help the millions of orphans still surviving in our world today. And I think that's a good thing.

Fast's story, told in the third person to give a sense of the commonality of many an orphan's story, will touch your heart and make you think.

Part of me wishes I had never read the book because I am haunted by its images. But a bigger part of me is so glad I read it and had my eyes opened to a real and all-too-common truth in our broken world. Millions of children in this world are surviving in a cruel and unforgiving world. What will we do to help, REALLY HELP, them?

Read this book. It will change you. ...more
5

Dec 21, 2014

This is such a heartwrenching story, and yet it is so full of hope. No one knows the path many in this world walk or have walked. Very few could walk and survive the path Stefanie Fast walked. I am not real familiar with the Korean War since it was many, many years before my time. However, I remember hearing similar stories after the Vietnam War. An American soldier fathers a child with a Korean mother. It is bad enough the mother is left pregnant and unwed, but the baby is mixed which is an This is such a heartwrenching story, and yet it is so full of hope. No one knows the path many in this world walk or have walked. Very few could walk and survive the path Stefanie Fast walked. I am not real familiar with the Korean War since it was many, many years before my time. However, I remember hearing similar stories after the Vietnam War. An American soldier fathers a child with a Korean mother. It is bad enough the mother is left pregnant and unwed, but the baby is mixed which is an absolute taboo. When she is four years old the family has had enough. Her mother takes her to the train station and abandons her. She spends years looking for her mother. The abuse and atrocities she goes through make it a miracle she survived. God looked down on her and had great plans for her. She did survive. This is one of those books you will start and continue to read until you have finished it. You will need your tissues as this will break your heart and the warm it. It made me hurt for every child today who goes through hardships. It makes me appreciate my years growing up and the love I had. I highly recommend this book.
I received a copy to facilitate my review. ...more
3

May 09, 2016

Such a heartbreaking story. It is difficult to accept that people would be so cruel especailly to a young child. At times I had to set it aside because it was just too difficult to read.

I do have a problem with the author filling in the gaps about details she couldnt remember. She states that the reader will be able to discern where the author filled in the gaps. Well, I couldnt discern where/when the author was filling in the gaps (except concerning her mother and father) and that caused my to Such a heartbreaking story. It is difficult to accept that people would be so cruel especailly to a young child. At times I had to set it aside because it was just too difficult to read.

I do have a problem with the author “filling in the gaps” about details she couldn’t remember. She states that the reader will be able to discern where the author “filled in the gaps”. Well, I couldn’t discern where/when the author was “filling” in the gaps (except concerning her mother and father) and that caused my to me question everything else. I am not questioning that the author experienced horrible things that no one, especially a child, should experience just questioning all the details.

Content:
Sex/Nudity: Stephanie is repeatedly raped as well as other young girls, but thankfully the book does not go into details
Profanity/Language: Moderate
Violence/Gore: Severe - horrible acts of violence perpetrated against young Korean orphans
Drugs/Alcohol: mild ...more
3

Feb 15, 2017

This was a book that left me with a word I don't use often. Unbelievable. I have no reason to doubt her story is true. It's simply beyond my scope of experience to imagine how a 4 year-old child survived alone in the world. Survived such personal brutality. Witnessed horrific events. The writing was easy to comprehend and not flowery. Unbelievable. I can't think of another word.
3

Feb 18, 2016

Although an interesting read, sometimes the details were so harsh, I had to set it down. It's somehow different when you realize all these horrible things happened to the smiling person on the back cover of the book. Man's level of inhumanity to their fellow man can be breathtaking. And difficult to hear about.
3

Oct 22, 2018

Not very believable, but a quick interesting read and thankfully not too religious.
5

Feb 20, 2019

I'm thankful

There were places in this book that were hard to read because of what Stephanie had to endure. I shed tears for what she went through but also was thanking God that my South Korean born adopted daughter never was subject to any of this. Thank you Stephanie for being willing to tell your story.
5

Jan 28, 2018

I think this may be the saddest book I have ever read. When I told a friend that she asked why I would read it then....the answer is some things are worth being sad over. That this girl could survive is amazing! That God could reach down and say "she is mine!" To this little girl that no one knew and no one cared about is a amazing testament to His mercy and Grace.
3

Jun 27, 2018

A quick read, which is a good thing. This is a true yet difficult story about a four-year old mixed raced Korean girl abandoned by her birth mother. This child faces unbelievable abuse and yet manages to survive for three years on her own.
5

Aug 28, 2017

Such a powerful story of survival and endurance. At times painfully hard to read and realize what the author endured. And so tragic to know that this story is not an isolated event, it is so prevalent in our world. May we make a difference in our lives for the least of these!
5

Dec 11, 2019

I picked up this book intending to only read a chapter or two while in bed. I didnt put it down until I had finished! Its a heartbreaking story of a very young child and her journey through the ravages of war, abuse, racism, starvation and abandonment, until she finds a loving, welcoming family. I picked up this book intending to only read a chapter or two while in bed. I didn’t put it down until I had finished! It’s a heartbreaking story of a very young child and her journey through the ravages of war, abuse, racism, starvation and abandonment, until she finds a loving, welcoming family. ...more
5

Aug 06, 2018

An emotional read, not for the faint of heart. Some parts were hard to read yet this book remained impossible to put down. Its a story about unthinkable cruelty but also of the resilient nature of the human spirit. Heartbreaking and inspiring all at the same time. An emotional read, not for the faint of heart. Some parts were hard to read yet this book remained impossible to put down. It’s a story about unthinkable cruelty but also of the resilient nature of the human spirit. Heartbreaking and inspiring all at the same time. ...more
5

Aug 13, 2018

Phenomenal

This story is told masterfully, it held my attention all the way through. It needs to be told! I am amazed how Stephanie inspires such hope and faith despite the relentless cruelty she endured. Unbelievably moving. I am blessed through reading this.
3

Apr 12, 2019

For a book that I believe captures the reality of child abuse more effectively I suggest reading: Girl Unbroken by Regina Calcaterra. Though the circumstances are different the emotion is more available than in the story I am reviewing below.

"She Is Mine" is written as a composite of many children's experiences. It is written as though the author herself experienced all of the horrors which she did not. That is not to diminish her experience but to explain why I had trouble accepting much of her For a book that I believe captures the reality of child abuse more effectively I suggest reading: Girl Unbroken by Regina Calcaterra. Though the circumstances are different the emotion is more available than in the story I am reviewing below.

"She Is Mine" is written as a composite of many children's experiences. It is written as though the author herself experienced all of the horrors which she did not. That is not to diminish her experience but to explain why I had trouble accepting much of her story. If you read the introduction you will discover that the author wrote a fictionalized memoir so that it would encompass the horrors that many Korean war orphans suffered. If the reader takes the story details literally in that each and everything she describes happened to HER you will not find the story believable. At the very end of the book, Miss Fast as a child has aged and the story becomes more literal and makes more sense.

I had great difficulty accepting much of the story the way it was told and sections of the story irritated me. If one reads it believing that ALL incidents happened to the author as written, the story is impossible to accept.

Scientifically speaking most humans can survive without any food for about 6 weeks.. Severe symptoms of starvation begin around 35-40 days and death usually occurs at approximately 50 days. As the story is told, it seems unbelievable that she, a mere child of 5 years of age lived alone, without any food what so ever, outside through a bitter cold and snowy Korean winter. Not only that but she had internal and external parasites, rat bites and physical injuries. Therefore, though I have utter compassion for her, it is impossible for me under the described conditions to see how this "kindergarten age child" (Ms Fast) survived as described. Certainly there was poetic license here.

I have utter compassion for child abuse. I detest all forms of child abuse and mean no disrespect to these orphans but had issues with the way the story was told. It's an important story to tell for posterity and it isn't unique to Korea. Tragically, it is replicated all over the world in 3rd world countries. ...more
4

May 08, 2018

I first heard some of Stephanie Fast's story on Focus on the Family several years ago. I met her at an event at which she shared more of her story. Every person has a story and I want to know them. Some stories are more challenging and inspiring. Stephanie's is one of those.

She Is Mine is a war orphan's incredible journey of rejection, abandonment, pain, loss, betrayal, abuse, yet survival and redemption. It's hard to imagine that anyone could survive what Stephanie endured; she would agree I first heard some of Stephanie Fast's story on Focus on the Family several years ago. I met her at an event at which she shared more of her story. Every person has a story and I want to know them. Some stories are more challenging and inspiring. Stephanie's is one of those.

She Is Mine is a war orphan's incredible journey of rejection, abandonment, pain, loss, betrayal, abuse, yet survival and redemption. It's hard to imagine that anyone could survive what Stephanie endured; she would agree with that, yet she also says, "I want to make it clear that in every instance of my life, whether, I knew it or not, there was a greater, higher, wiser power propelling willing hearts to rescue me."

A woman allowed her to sleep in her kitchen, an old grandmother pulled her out of a well, a man saved her from the sure death on a waterwheel, a Swedish nurse found her in a garbage dump, or her parents who adopted her--providential ordinary acts of love and kindness. Along the way she was told, "You must live. Go live."

And she did. This memoir ends with Stephanie becoming a naturalized citizen of the US. She says more of her story is forthcoming. I want to know how healing and restoration came.

The passion of her life is to share her story as a platform for adoption.

Very readable—though painful. Stephanie survives—not somehow, but triumphantly.
...more
5

Apr 15, 2019

I wanted this book to be over when I was about halfway through. I heard Stephanie speak at a concert about a year ago and was broken by the realities that her story spoke of then. When her book was offered for free for kindle I knew I needed to read the rest.

Her life, in the early years, was tragic and heart breaking and real. What is even more heartbreaking is that this story is just one of millions that could be told.

Preparing her as an advocate for foreign and rejected children the world I wanted this book to be over when I was about halfway through. I heard Stephanie speak at a concert about a year ago and was broken by the realities that her story spoke of then. When her book was offered for free for kindle I knew I needed to read the rest.

Her life, in the early years, was tragic and heart breaking and real. What is even more heartbreaking is that this story is just one of millions that could be told.

Preparing her as an advocate for foreign and rejected children the world over.

This book serves as a good reminder, in general, but even more for me of what God is calling me in to. ...more
5

Aug 31, 2017

This was an incredibly sad yet inspiring memoir of a woman who, as a child, lived through some of the worst abuse I have read about in a long time, all based upon her being mixed blood. Inspiring because she survived and has used her story to draw attention to the sufferings of other war orphans. From the publisher: Her father was an American serviceman, her mother a young Korean woman confused by the ravages of war. Abandoned at age four, nameless, homeless, and utterly alone, this child of This was an incredibly sad yet inspiring memoir of a woman who, as a child, lived through some of the worst abuse I have read about in a long time, all based upon her being mixed blood. Inspiring because she survived and has used her story to draw attention to the sufferings of other war orphans. From the publisher: Her father was an American serviceman, her mother a young Korean woman confused by the ravages of war. Abandoned at age four, nameless, homeless, and utterly alone, this child of destiny roamed the bleak, war-ravaged countryside of South Korea for three years and was finally left for dead. But God had other plans. ...more

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