Belief is its Own Kind of Truth, Maybe
by Lori Jakiela



Atticus Books, 2015. ISBN 978-0-991-54692-3.
Reviewed by Helene Benardo
Posted on 04/18/2015

Nonfiction: Memoir

Belief is its Own Kind of Truth, Maybe, by Lori Jakiela, is a most moving book. The author was adopted and, although now is middle-aged, is still seeking answers to birth-related questions.

Jakiela has had a rocky life. At birth she had malformed legs and, later on, underwent many surgical procedures to correct the condition. Although she's happily married, with two children, and she repeatedly refers to her adoptive parents as her real mother and father, it's clear that there are emotional scars left from her upbringing. She tries to contact her birth mother, but is rebuffed when her mother lets her know that she wishes she'd had an abortion and will never want to meet her.

My reservations about the book stem from its episodic organization. It's occasionally confusing not to know if Jakiela is referring to the past or the present, and some of the writing seems a bit self-conscious and precious to me.

The unusual title refers, I believe, to the author's desperate desire to believe in herself and her place in the world—not as a rejected child, nor as an adopted one—but as the writer, wife and mother that she has become.


The author has written several memoirs and poetry collections and is a writing teacher in two colleges. Visit her website.

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