Finding Chika
" Mitch Albom has done it again with this moving memoir of love and loss. You can’t help but fall for Chika. A page-turner that will no doubt become a classic.” --Mary Karr, author of The Liars’ Club and The Art of Memoir From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Tuesdays With Morrie comes Mitch Albom’s most personal story to date: an intimate and heartwarming memoir about what it means to be a family and the young Haitian orphan whose short life would forever change his heart.  Chika Jeune was born three days before the devastating earthquake that decimated Haiti in 2010. She spent her infancy in a landscape of extreme poverty, and when her mother died giving birth to a baby brother, Chika was brought to The Have Faith Haiti Orphanage that Albom operates in Port Au Prince. With no children of their own, the forty-plus children who live, play, and go to school at the orphanage have become family to Mitch and his wife, Janine. Chika’s arrival makes a quick impression. Brave and self-assured, even as a three-year-old, she delights the other kids and teachers. But at age five, Chika is suddenly diagnosed with something a doctor there says, “No one in Haiti can help you with.” Mitch and Janine bring Chika to Detroit, hopeful that American medical care can soon return her to her homeland. Instead, Chika becomes a permanent part of their household, and their lives, as they embark on a two-year, around-the-world journey to find a cure. As Chika’s boundless optimism and humor teach Mitch the joys of caring for a child, he learns that a relationship built on love, no matter what blows it takes, can never be lost. Told in hindsight, and through illuminating conversations with Chika herself, this is Albom at his most poignant and vulnerable. Finding Chika is a celebration of a girl, her adoptive guardians, and the incredible bond they formed—a devastatingly beautiful portrait of what it means to be a family, regardless of how it is made.

Finding Chika Details

TitleFinding Chika
Author
ReleaseNov 5th, 2019
PublisherHarper
Rating
GenreNonfiction, Autobiography, Memoir, Biography, Audiobook

Finding Chika Review

  • Kloe
    January 1, 1970
    Mitch Albom is going to have a new book and no one here except me on goodreads is hyped for it ??!
  • Cheri
    January 1, 1970
    ”Hopelessness can be contagious. But hope can be, too, and there is no medicine to match it. Chika’s believing in us helped us believe in ourselves.” In the late 90s, a friend gave me a copy of Mitch Albom’s “Tuesdays With Morrie,” and when I saw that he had another new memoir coming out, I knew I wanted to read this one, and put my name on the list at my library.The lessons he learned with Morrie, an old professor, are very different from the ones he learns from Chika, a young girl whose life ”Hopelessness can be contagious. But hope can be, too, and there is no medicine to match it. Chika’s believing in us helped us believe in ourselves.” In the late 90s, a friend gave me a copy of Mitch Albom’s “Tuesdays With Morrie,” and when I saw that he had another new memoir coming out, I knew I wanted to read this one, and put my name on the list at my library.The lessons he learned with Morrie, an old professor, are very different from the ones he learns from Chika, a young girl whose life is marked with difficulty even before her birth, which was three days before the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, and what years she spent with her mother before her mother’s death in childbirth were marked by desperate poverty. A young girl that is brought to an orphanage when her mother dies giving birth to her baby brother, where Albom meets Chika on one of his regular trips to Haiti at the orphanage he runs there – The Have Faith Haiti Orphanage in Port Au Prince.When it is brought to his attention that Chika needs medical attention that isn’t available in Haiti, he brings her to their home, hoping to find a cure for this girl that has stolen his heart. ”Chika died last spring, when the trees in our yard were beginning to bud, as they are budding now, as it is spring again. Her absence left us without breath, or sleep, or appetite, and my wife and I stared straight ahead for long stretches until someone spoke to snap us out of it.” Eventually, life begins to return to a more somber ‘normal’ for Albom and his wife. Life has to go on, as do the living. The slow process of grief can’t be rushed along. As husband and wife, with many of their memories of life with Chika intertwined, grief is a shared, but also a solitary process. In his grief, eventually, Chika begins to appear to Albom, moments of conversations urging him through the process, urging him to share his story. Their story. Sharing the lessons that she taught him. ”"I remember times you and I were walking and, without prompting, you reached out and took my hand, your little fingers sliding into mine. I would like to tell you how that felt, but it is too big for words" This is his story, their story, of the years they spent together, acknowledging the gift that those years were, for she will forever occupy a place in their hearts. And, yes, it has heartbreaking moments, but it also is heartwarming, tender and inspiring. We live, we love, and in the end, we become Real. “ Real isn’t how you are made …It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but really loves you, then you become Real.” -- The Velveteen Rabbit by Susan Gabriel Many thanks, once again, to the Public Library system, and the many Librarians that manage, organize and keep it running, for the loan of this book!
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  • Linden
    January 1, 1970
    Author Mitch Albom and his wife Janine run an orphanage in Haiti, and they received a call that one of their favorite children, 5 year old Chika, had something very wrong. The only MRI machine in Haiti identified a brain mass, so they brought Chika to Michigan to see if they could get treatment for her. She had a rare incurable brain tumor which attacks young children, but they tried everything, including extended stays in Germany for an experimental treatment. The book was very Author Mitch Albom and his wife Janine run an orphanage in Haiti, and they received a call that one of their favorite children, 5 year old Chika, had something very wrong. The only MRI machine in Haiti identified a brain mass, so they brought Chika to Michigan to see if they could get treatment for her. She had a rare incurable brain tumor which attacks young children, but they tried everything, including extended stays in Germany for an experimental treatment. The book was very thought-provoking, because I wondered how far I would go to try and save my child. Would I keep seeking a cure, as they did, despite the fact that most doctors told them that it was hopeless? Would I keep looking, even while the child was bedridden with a feeding tube? Or would I have put her on hospice care with minimal intervention? Who can say? Have some tissues handy as you read this one.
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  • Kim Fox
    January 1, 1970
    So many feelings about this book. I knew after the first chapter that I would not be able to put it down. I finished it in just under six hours. The way @mitchalbom tells a story ,is what propelled me through this book. And this one will resonate with everyone! I don't like to write a synopsis in my reviews, so I will just say this... You will learn something about yourself when you read this book. It will touch your heart and yes, have tissues ready! I received this ebook from Edelweiss for my So many feelings about this book. I knew after the first chapter that I would not be able to put it down. I finished it in just under six hours. The way @mitchalbom tells a story ,is what propelled me through this book. And this one will resonate with everyone! I don't like to write a synopsis in my reviews, so I will just say this... You will learn something about yourself when you read this book. It will touch your heart and yes, have tissues ready! I received this ebook from Edelweiss for my honest review.
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  • Swetha Amit
    January 1, 1970
    Families are made not necessarily by birth but by unexpected circumstances.‘Finding Chika’ emphasizes this fact and much more.After Tuesdays with Morrie, author Mitch Albom returns with yet another memoir that tugs the strings of your heart.Chika is a young orphan who was born 3 days before the Haiti earthquake in 2010. After losing her mother to death, Chika is admitted to Have Faith Haiti orphanage, which Mitch Albom operates in Port-au-Prince. Mitch and his wife Janine have no children of Families are made not necessarily by birth but by unexpected circumstances.‘Finding Chika’ emphasizes this fact and much more.After Tuesdays with Morrie, author Mitch Albom returns with yet another memoir that tugs the strings of your heart.Chika is a young orphan who was born 3 days before the Haiti earthquake in 2010. After losing her mother to death, Chika is admitted to Have Faith Haiti orphanage, which Mitch Albom operates in Port-au-Prince. Mitch and his wife Janine have no children of their own so they treat the children in their orphanage as their family.When Chika arrives, she wins hearts quickly with her confidence and curiosity. At the age of five, she is diagonosed with a tumour. She is brought to America for better medical care and slowly becomes a vital part of Mitch’s family. The book goes on to describe the 2 year ordeal of trying to find a cure for Chika’s rare condition. Through a tumultuous journey of laughter and tears, Mitch and Janine learn the importance of family, love and parenting.Poignant, heartwarming and bittersweet, Mitch traces his rapport with Chika, her fighter spirit and how it changed his life. He refers to Tuesday’s with Morrie in one section of the book, drawing parallels to his learnings from his favorite professor to his current learnings from Chika.He describes his musings on faith, belief, acceptance and belonging. The author showcases his vulnerable side while penning down about Chika. The little girl manages to win the hearts of the readers with her display of surety and maturity. It reminds one of the little girl’s character from R Balki’s film and the Amitabh Bachchan starrer ‘Cheeni Kum’.Finding Chika is a remarkable read which is bound to leave you moist eyed.Felt especially blessed to read this on thanksgiving day.
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  • Karen
    January 1, 1970
    Every book I have read by Albom I have thoroughly enjoyed, and this one is no exception. More than anything, I really liked how he described his little family, and discussed what makes up a family.
  • Jec
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you so much to NETGALLEY for providing me with this most wonderful book.This is a touching tribute to a child who capture the heart and soul of author Mitch Albom and his wife Janine. You will laugh...you will cry...but you will never forget the story of this very special family. Mr. Albom is honest and pulls no punches in his feelings and experiences in relating the story of how their little family came to be. The story is told in a very unique manner which makes this book a joy to read. Thank you so much to NETGALLEY for providing me with this most wonderful book.This is a touching tribute to a child who capture the heart and soul of author Mitch Albom and his wife Janine. You will laugh...you will cry...but you will never forget the story of this very special family. Mr. Albom is honest and pulls no punches in his feelings and experiences in relating the story of how their little family came to be. The story is told in a very unique manner which makes this book a joy to read. A very special journey that should not be missed.
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  • Elizabeth
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to HarperCollins Publishers and NetGalley for an Advance Reader Copy in exchange for my honest review.Touching tribute to Chitka, whom the author and his wife rescued from a Haitian orphanage so she could receive better medical care in the United States. I loved Chitka’s spirit! I will think of her when things are tough. I was a bit confused at times if the author was imagining Chitka’s presence or if they were true memories. My favorite book by this author remains Tuesdays with Morrie.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Last night I saw Mitch Albom and he spoke about Chika. It was one of the most beautiful and humbling experiences of my life. Reading this book, so very personal to him and relevant to us all, is an experience I recommend. It is short, to the point, and beautifully expressed. What he and his wife did for Chika, what Chika gave them, and what he does for the Haitian orphanage since 2010 is just the work of an angel. Mitch finished with words that really moved me and I hope I'm saying them as he Last night I saw Mitch Albom and he spoke about Chika. It was one of the most beautiful and humbling experiences of my life. Reading this book, so very personal to him and relevant to us all, is an experience I recommend. It is short, to the point, and beautifully expressed. What he and his wife did for Chika, what Chika gave them, and what he does for the Haitian orphanage since 2010 is just the work of an angel. Mitch finished with words that really moved me and I hope I'm saying them as he did. "It is only when someone you love dies that you understand what it means to have lived." All profits from his book go to the orphanage so buy it..it's a great way to help the forgotten children of the world. ☮
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  • Heather Scott Partington
    January 1, 1970
    Mitch Albom’s latest memoir is a sentimental story of a life transformed. Would you expect anything else?Albom’s "Finding Chika" (Harper, 256 pp., out of four stars) details the author’s relationship with a young girl, Chika Jeune, whom he met at the Have Faith Haiti Mission and Orphanage in Port-au-Prince, which Albom directs and visits regularly. Chika, born only days after the 2010 Haitian earthquake, was surrendered by family several years later when her mother died in childbirth with her Mitch Albom’s latest memoir is a sentimental story of a life transformed. Would you expect anything else?Albom’s "Finding Chika" (Harper, 256 pp., ★★½ out of four stars) details the author’s relationship with a young girl, Chika Jeune, whom he met at the Have Faith Haiti Mission and Orphanage in Port-au-Prince, which Albom directs and visits regularly. Chika, born only days after the 2010 Haitian earthquake, was surrendered by family several years later when her mother died in childbirth with her brother...Read the rest of this review at USA Today.
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  • Rich Paz
    January 1, 1970
    Well done, Mr. Albom. I would have given this book 6 stars. This is the best book you've written so far and I love all your books. And this book really tells me who you are, sincere and authentic. I can't wait for your next book. Congrats and thanks for sharing.
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  • Linda B.
    January 1, 1970
    Beautiful story! Beautiful story! 💔❤️
  • C.J. Pacheco Agosto
    January 1, 1970
    A heartbreaking story that everyone should read, specially those who have, plan to or care for our precious little children. Chika was someone special to Albom and changed his life the same way they change our lives.
  • LiteraryMarie
    January 1, 1970
    For years, Mitch Albom has graced us with fictional stories that made us think. Characters that stuck in our minds. Wisdom and quotes to last a lifetime. Finally, the bestselling author shares his own true story. The memoir is heartbreaking, joyful, sad yet full of life. Finding Chika is about a little girl, an earthquake, and the making of a family.Chika is a young Haitian orphan born three days before the record-breaking devastating earthquake in 2010. By divine design (my words, not his), For years, Mitch Albom has graced us with fictional stories that made us think. Characters that stuck in our minds. Wisdom and quotes to last a lifetime. Finally, the bestselling author shares his own true story. The memoir is heartbreaking, joyful, sad yet full of life. Finding Chika is about a little girl, an earthquake, and the making of a family.Chika is a young Haitian orphan born three days before the record-breaking devastating earthquake in 2010. By divine design (my words, not his), Chika was placed at The Have Faith Haiti Mission Orphanage that Mitch Albom operates in Port au Prince. With no children of their own, the children of the orphanage have become family to Mitch and his wife, Janine. So when Chika is diagnosed with an illness that cannot be cured in Haiti, Mitch and Janine bring Chika and a mountain of hope back home to Detroit. And so begins a two-year-journey literally around the world to find a cure and healing.The book is told in brilliant hindsight narrative with conversations/visions between Mitch and Chika. Through the pages, readers can feel their special bond, the unconditional love, the struggles of healthcare, the lengths family go to help one another and the celebration of life. The words are so descriptive that I could hear Chika's voice as if she were in the room with me. I could feel Mitch and Janine's desperation to find healing no matter the expense. Finding Chika has easily earned a spot in my Top Books of 2019. So well done!Happy Pub Day, Mitch Albom! Finding Chika is available today.LiteraryMarie
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  • Teri
    January 1, 1970
    So touching. Heartbreaking and heartwarming. A true lesson in loving and caring. While this story is very sad and tugs at your heart, there is also humor and hope. If you believe! Reading this I also discovered that Chika was treated by the same radiology oncologist that my Mom was treated by at Beaumont Hospital. Dr. Peter Chen. My Mom is now 98.
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  • Chris
    January 1, 1970
    There’s hardly a writer around who tugs at the heart like Mitch Albom. He rose to fame with “Tuesdays with Morrie,” (1997). After a string of stirring titles, Mitch shines again with “Finding Chika, a Little Girl, and Earthquake, and the Making of a Family,” a slim memoir about a Haitian orphan Mitch and his wife Janine take in.Unable to have children, the Albom’s new family of three sadly isn’t long lived—Chika died of a brain tumor at age seven, two years after Albom took her from the There’s hardly a writer around who tugs at the heart like Mitch Albom. He rose to fame with “Tuesdays with Morrie,” (1997). After a string of stirring titles, Mitch shines again with “Finding Chika, a Little Girl, and Earthquake, and the Making of a Family,” a slim memoir about a Haitian orphan Mitch and his wife Janine take in.Unable to have children, the Albom’s new family of three sadly isn’t long lived—Chika died of a brain tumor at age seven, two years after Albom took her from the orphanage he runs in Haiti for medical treatment in the States. Mitch and Janine had no idea what was in store for them when Chika was diagnosed with stage four DIPG, a rare, stealthy cancer that gradually stole the girl’s motor skills and led to her death in April 2017. To tell his story, Mitch calls upon Chika’s spirit, an apparition of the child appearing to him a year after she passed, on the day of his father’s funeral as Mitch sits in front of his computer, unable to write. At Chika’s urging his fingers take to the keyboard—the result an account so poignant as to reduce readers to tears.Chika was only seven when she lost her battle with cancer. She was born in 2010, just days before an earthquake hit Haiti killing hundreds of thousands. Chika’s mother lived through the disaster but later died in childbirth—Chika ended up at an orphanage in Port-au-Prince that Mitch began operating the year of the earthquake. He’d regularly visit and met Chika, a precocious girl who developed troubling symptoms—her face drooped, her gait was uneven. The girl needed treatment unavailable in Haiti, so Mitch and Janine, residents of Michigan, took her to a hospital in Detroit, where the ominous diagnosis was delivered. “Finding Chika” highlights Mitch’s reminisces of the good times the little family enjoyed, the joy that Chika instilled in others with her sweet smile, funny songs and quips, and the wisdom and courage she displayed in her short life. Black and white photos put a face to Chika’s name and further enhance this loving tribute.
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  • Jann Dieringer
    January 1, 1970
    Loved this story. Recommend listening to the audible version because you can here Chika’s voice.
  • Ellyn
    January 1, 1970
    From the minute I opened this book, my heart opened too. The love that Mitch Albom and his wife had and will always have for Chika, from the minute they met her until the day she passed, will warm your heart. His lessons are like gifts that keep giving. This will be added to my collection of Mitch Albom books to cherish and read again.
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  • Barbara
    January 1, 1970
    Great book! The love of parents whether biological or not is the love of all. To care for a child so sick must be a tough road to go down. What a tear jerker! To me it was saying how hard and long it is to grieve for someone. Sometimes it is hard to let them go. Very much worth reading!
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  • Jena Henry
    January 1, 1970
    I am blessed to have had the opportunity to read this book prior to its release on November 5, 2019. To all the fans of Mitch Albom, and who isn’t a fan-his books have collectively sold more than 40 million copies- I can assure you that this non-fiction book is Mr. Albom at his best. The book is subtitled “a little girl, an earthquake and the making of a family”. The little girl is Chika, a three year old child who was orphaned in the devastating earthquake in Haiti in 2010. As a result, Chika I am blessed to have had the opportunity to read this book prior to its release on November 5, 2019. To all the fans of Mitch Albom, and who isn’t a fan-his books have collectively sold more than 40 million copies- I can assure you that this non-fiction book is Mr. Albom at his best. The book is subtitled “a little girl, an earthquake and the making of a family”. The little girl is Chika, a three year old child who was orphaned in the devastating earthquake in Haiti in 2010. As a result, Chika came to live in the Haitian orphanage run by the author. “Though she be but little, she is fierce.” Chika’s vibrant and assertive personality made her a favorite. When she was five, she developed some devastating symptoms and so Mr. Albom brought her back to America for treatment. Chika’s prognosis was grim, but that is not the real story of this book. The real story is how “Mr. Mitch”, “Miss Janine” and Chika created a family. In his simple, clear, open way, the author shares how the love for a child changed his life for the better. He saw that a family can be created from a variety of materials and God’s love shines through children. Filled with faith, inspiration, and hope, this lovely book will take you away from your everyday concerns and have you thinking about life, love and the big picture. If you cry easily, this book will wrench you from the start. But I don’t think Chika would want you to be sad. She would want you to live and have fun and tell people that you love them. Many thanks to NetGalley, and HarperCollins Publishers for a digital review copy. This is my honest review. And thanks to the author for his beautiful spirit. Mr. Albom founded a charity in Detroit that oversees nine full-time charities and in 2010 he began operating a mission and orphanage in Haiti.
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  • Barbara
    January 1, 1970
    I would like to thank HarperCollinsPublishers for sending me this book that is an Uncorrected Proof for Review. I actually, received it on September 25th (estimated date) so I was able to take it camping in the woods with me. Grieving is the hardest thing a person ever has to go through. Chika has an uplifting spirit no matter how sick she becomes. She is curious about everything around her and seeks knowledge of things most young children do not care about. Mitch and Janine fall in love with I would like to thank HarperCollinsPublishers for sending me this book that is an Uncorrected Proof for Review. I actually, received it on September 25th (estimated date) so I was able to take it camping in the woods with me. Grieving is the hardest thing a person ever has to go through. Chika has an uplifting spirit no matter how sick she becomes. She is curious about everything around her and seeks knowledge of things most young children do not care about. Mitch and Janine fall in love with her but at first it was to bring this dear child to the United States of America for treatment of a brain tumor that was intertwined in her brain and was a type of cancer.Mitch kept seeing Chika return to visit him after her death as a way of coping with her loss. This book is loving, happy, moving, inspirational and should be read by many.Mitch Albom is a great writer as I also read "Tuesdays with Morrie" and loved that book.
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  • Jec
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you so much to NETGALLEY for providing me with this most wonderful book.This is a touching tribute to a child who capture the heart and soul of author Mitch Albom and his wife Janine. You will laugh...you will cry...but you will never forget the story of this very special family. Mr. Albom is honest and pulls no punches in his feelings and experiences in relating the story of how their little family came to be. The story is told in a very unique manner which makes this book a joy to read. Thank you so much to NETGALLEY for providing me with this most wonderful book.This is a touching tribute to a child who capture the heart and soul of author Mitch Albom and his wife Janine. You will laugh...you will cry...but you will never forget the story of this very special family. Mr. Albom is honest and pulls no punches in his feelings and experiences in relating the story of how their little family came to be. The story is told in a very unique manner which makes this book a joy to read. A very special journey that should not be missed.
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  • Fene
    January 1, 1970
    [ Prepare a box of tissue if you are gonna read this. ]It had been the longest time since Mitch Albom has had any non-fiction work. Having his new book in my hand was simply very exciting. This is a memoir and a tribute to the beautiful Medjerda Chika Jeune.His books have always been so magical, i am attracted to his words, my mind tends wandering in his story and he never failed making me cry. Once i started with the first chapter, i knew i could never put it down already. I finished this book [ Prepare a box of tissue if you are gonna read this. ]It had been the longest time since Mitch Albom has had any non-fiction work. Having his new book in my hand was simply very exciting. This is a memoir and a tribute to the beautiful Medjerda Chika Jeune.His books have always been so magical, i am attracted to his words, my mind tends wandering in his story and he never failed making me cry. Once i started with the first chapter, i knew i could never put it down already. I finished this book as soon as i got it, but my review always come late."Malè pa gen klakson"[ Misfortune doesn't have a horn. ]Finding Chika was a very heartbreaking story. Mitch Albom took over an orphanage in Haiti in 2010 after the earthquake and founded the Have Faith Haiti Orphanage Mission. In 2013, Chika came to the mission and became one of the residents. She was fun, loving, cheerful, small but fierce. One day the caretaker contacted Mitch that there was something wrong with Chika, her left eye and mouth was drooping, and and her left leg was walking funny. They found her a neurologist in Haiti and sent her for MRI and was diagnosed with DIPG, a brain tumor, the Haitian doctor claimed that no one in Haiti could help her. Chika was only Four. Mitch and Janine decided to bring her to America hoping the amazing American medicine could do something to cure her. After all the constant MRI, regular blood tests and frequent chemotherapy, the tumor had been operated and diminished by radiation, but unaffected by other treatments after that. There was good news and bad news, good was the invader hadn't stirred, but it also wasn't going anywhere neither.Despite the prediction "nobody survives DIPG", Mitch was still hoping there will be a chance something radical might be developed, or some new laser treatment or new medications would be stumbled-upon.No one had given up, after fighting and survived for an exceptionally long 23 months, i broke down with tears at the last chapter, where Chika was saying her final goodbye, friends she made along her journey came to bid her goodbye. Mitch and Janine sat by her bedside, looking at her pictures that were taken earlier, kissing her cheeks again and again, and counting her last breath... I CAN NOT, I JUST CAN NOT CONTROL MY TEARS. I was crying so badly towards the end my husband thought my gastric was killing me.Chika was seven, buried in Haiti on the 15th of April, 2017. Many people she touched flew to Haiti for the ceremony. This story potrayed how a beautiful bond they had formed and what it truly means to be a family, regardless of how it is made. If you think a mother's love for her children is the most unconditional and selfless love, you might need to reconsider that. There was the purest connection between an adoptive mother and her children, there was also helpless infants shunned by those who birthed them, after a while, you make peace with the truth: love determines our bonds. The way he told their stories is painfully sad and beautiful. Mitch mentioned that when he was young he was being overly career-focused and putting off the thought of having kids until he realized it was too late. Meeting Chika allowed him and his wife Janine to experience the bitter sweet of parenthood, that was when a marriage becomes a family. [ we did not lose a child. We were given one, and she was glorious. ]May you rest in peace, Chika, a beautiful young warrior!
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  • Maggi Harris
    January 1, 1970
    I have been reading Mitch Albom since I came across Tuesdays with Morrie in middle school. He is one of my most-favorite authors and this book is a perfect example of why. Because his writing is gorgeous. “A suitcase full of hopeful naïveté” or his analogy of ambition being like clouds across the sun until “you get used to a dimmer existence”. It’s poignant. It’s beautiful without being flowery.Because he strikes a human chord in me. While I’m a fan of most of his fiction work, Mitch’s memoirs I have been reading Mitch Albom since I came across Tuesdays with Morrie in middle school. He is one of my most-favorite authors and this book is a perfect example of why. Because his writing is gorgeous. “A suitcase full of hopeful naïveté” or his analogy of ambition being like clouds across the sun until “you get used to a dimmer existence”. It’s poignant. It’s beautiful without being flowery.Because he strikes a human chord in me. While I’m a fan of most of his fiction work, Mitch’s memoirs leave me speechless. Even a day later, I’m having trouble explaining how this story of Chika affected me. First of all, I own every book (some multiple copies) of all of his books. So when I heard he had a new novel coming out and that it was about one of his orphans in Haiti, I thought this was an adoption story. Regardless, I had to have it. It wasn’t until the book was delivered that I realized exactly what this story was about. I don’t do synopsis reviews and this won’t be one either, but Mitch’s story of Chika, her life before the orphanage, at the orphanage, and her battle with a disease that I had never heard of is Powerful. My son fell to an illness last year and my grandmother passed away last month after time in hospice, so the last days of Chika’s life on this realm struck me hard. I sobbed at the end. But it leaves you with a story that we got from Mitch decades ago - that love is the way we keep people alive. That there is good in this world and it starts with being open and kind. That laughter really can be the best medicine, and that we can connect to each other regardless of age or race. As unlikely as it is that Mr. Albom will ever see this review, to him all I can is this: Firstly, congratulations on another incredible success with this novel. Secondly, and more important, thank you for sharing your experiences with the world. Your writing has impacted my sense of self more than any other author. The 20-year journey of reading your work has been a true joy.
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  • aqilahreads
    January 1, 1970
    MY EMOTIONS ARE ALL OVER THE PLACE. i dont think people could ever hate this book?!? mitch albom goes real this time & wrote his first non-fiction book about his orphanage in Haiti. the fact that all proceeds of this book goes to the orphanage itself; really warms my heart. in this memoir, mitch talks about how chika ((who arrived at the orphanage)) changes a lot of things in his life including his perpective of almost everything everyone could ever think of like love, loss, having a child MY EMOTIONS ARE ALL OVER THE PLACE. i dont think people could ever hate this book?!? mitch albom goes real this time & wrote his first non-fiction book about his orphanage in Haiti. the fact that all proceeds of this book goes to the orphanage itself; really warms my heart. in this memoir, mitch talks about how chika ((who arrived at the orphanage)) changes a lot of things in his life including his perpective of almost everything everyone could ever think of like love, loss, having a child and appreciating the little joys. mitch shares the lessons that chika has taught him and i could really feel his rawness of pouring out how he really feels about everything that has happened. there are a few moments where i honestly felt like crying because i could really connect with his words and the bond between chika and mitch himself is so sooo precious. this is the first time i have ever felt moved of a memoir; it was not over exaggerated 🙊🤧 and maybe mostly because of how innocent chika is. at a young age, she is so strong to face her struggle with so much postiveness and that itself is so inspiring. i have so many things to talk about this book 🥺😭🥺😭 i am just so touched by the lessons that both mitch and chika together have taught me by reading this book. 💚 5/5 ✨thank you so much @definitelybooks for sending a copy in exchange of an honest review 📚
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  • Judy
    January 1, 1970
    This memoir was touching in so many ways! I could have read it a lot more quickly, but the simply related story was so moving that I often had to put it down often, including at bedtime. I admit that I tear up easily: during many hymns, over any commercial with a yellow Lab, etc., but I was crying within the first few pages of Finding Chika!I didn't appreciate it during the many years when I had a houseful of talkative children, but as my children have grown and now live far away (and I no This memoir was touching in so many ways! I could have read it a lot more quickly, but the simply related story was so moving that I often had to put it down often, including at bedtime. I admit that I tear up easily: during many hymns, over any commercial with a yellow Lab, etc., but I was crying within the first few pages of Finding Chika!I didn't appreciate it during the many years when I had a houseful of talkative children, but as my children have grown and now live far away (and I no longer teach full-time), I have come to realize how precious are the sounds of childrens' voices. Albom does a wonderful job of capturing Chika's tone and expressions as he "finds" her and they converse over and over, in his memory of course. So on top of being moved by Albom's account of Chika's life and illness, I was reminded of how the voices of children are so entertaining, dellghtful, and fleeting. Beyond being a story of adoption, finding family, celebrating life, and handling loss, to me this little book is a reminder of how we can all "find" those we have "lost"...the lessons they can teach us, their playfulness, and the legacy they have left to us...as Chika did for Mitch and Janine.
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  • Kristian
    January 1, 1970
    Transitional book from Mitch Albom? I love this book, Gone for the most part are the plot twists, Sentimental or otherwise replaced by more of a straightforward very real story, Mitch Appears far less certain of himself (vulnerable nearly) as he relies he doesn't have all the answers. It's also a story of the Soul and how very different people that on the surface have so little in common or to offer each other are not so different after all. I think this book might be a transitional one for Transitional book from Mitch Albom? I love this book, Gone for the most part are the plot twists, Sentimental or otherwise replaced by more of a straightforward very real story, Mitch Appears far less certain of himself (vulnerable nearly) as he relies he doesn't have all the answers. It's also a story of the Soul and how very different people that on the surface have so little in common or to offer each other are not so different after all. I think this book might be a transitional one for Mitch in that the moments when he's speaking to Chika's spirit or is it his imagination? Ideas of the spirit world are nothing new in the mitch albom universe but he's only ever really touched on reincarnation, Eastern religion, Clairvoyants etc as he's still very much part of the Judaeo christian religion but perhaps this is a new world opening up to him and if anyone can speak to spirits i'd bet mitch can.
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  • Deborah Rusch
    January 1, 1970
    Mitch Albom is such a good man. I’ve read several of his books and I think this one is the most heart wrenching. Haiti is the second poorest country on earth. Hit by earthquakes and hurricanes families often have to give children to relatives or in this case an orphanage supported by Mitch himself and all proceeds from his true story go to support it. At the orphanage he meets a little girl, Chika, who for medical reasons he takes back to America where he and his wife, in their 50s, undergo a 23 Mitch Albom is such a good man. I’ve read several of his books and I think this one is the most heart wrenching. Haiti is the second poorest country on earth. Hit by earthquakes and hurricanes families often have to give children to relatives or in this case an orphanage supported by Mitch himself and all proceeds from his true story go to support it. At the orphanage he meets a little girl, Chika, who for medical reasons he takes back to America where he and his wife, in their 50s, undergo a 23 month journey with Chika to find a cure for her rare brain disease. I think I used a whole box of tissues for happy and sad tears. It’s only about 5 hours on audible and I highly recommend listening as Mitch is narrator with actual clips of Chika.
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  • Sandy
    January 1, 1970
    I read this in practically one sitting. I knew the outcome and couldn't stand to not finish it because it breaks your heart yet is uplifting how Chika did what she had to do. I didn't like that he pretended to see Chika after she died. It was bizarre to me. He is a very good writer and I love all his books but talking to Chika like he did in the book just didn't fit for me. He could have just written it to her but having her sitting beside him and talking to him was just weird. I understand that I read this in practically one sitting. I knew the outcome and couldn't stand to not finish it because it breaks your heart yet is uplifting how Chika did what she had to do. I didn't like that he pretended to see Chika after she died. It was bizarre to me. He is a very good writer and I love all his books but talking to Chika like he did in the book just didn't fit for me. He could have just written it to her but having her sitting beside him and talking to him was just weird. I understand that he can do what he needs to do to heal from losing a child. What a devastating disease. I had never heard of it.
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  • Debbie Turner
    January 1, 1970
    I have to start this review with a disclaimer: I love all of Mitch Albom's works. This book was no exception. I cried as I walked through Chika's short life with Mitch and Janine. I lost a sister who had a brain tumor. Her battle was 4 months and 1 day. This book brought back so many memories for me, heart-wrenching and deep-seated memories, tempered by memories of love and laughter. Thank you for writing this book and forcing me to face the loss of my sister once more. My sister, just like I have to start this review with a disclaimer: I love all of Mitch Albom's works. This book was no exception. I cried as I walked through Chika's short life with Mitch and Janine. I lost a sister who had a brain tumor. Her battle was 4 months and 1 day. This book brought back so many memories for me, heart-wrenching and deep-seated memories, tempered by memories of love and laughter. Thank you for writing this book and forcing me to face the loss of my sister once more. My sister, just like Chika, left so much more than the pain and the loss and the hurt for us all. They left us memories of living and laughing and loving. Short book; powerful message.
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