Title: A Father's Love
Author: David Goldman
Publication Year: 2011
Date Completed: 5/4/2011
Rating: 4/5Recommend: yes
A Father's Love tells the sometimes painful story of David Goldman's five year ordeal, in bringing his son back to his home in New Jersey from Brazil.
In 1997 when David was working in Italy, he met a Brazilian woman named Bruna Bianchi Soon the couple fell in love. The two married and made their home in a New Jersey seaside community where David resided, and two years later in 2000, their son Sean was born.
Since Bruna's family was from Brazil, the couple would often travel there a few times a year. In 2004, Bruna and Sean flew to Brazil for a two week vacation. David was to meet them there the following week, but four days into her visit she called her husband David to say that she wanted a divorce, as well as full custody of their son Sean. Shocked and in a state of disbelief, for over three years David struggled to find someone to help him to get his abducted son back. He made several trips to Brazil to see his son, but was repeatedly denied access to the boy, except for occasional and brief telephone calls. Gifts and cards which were sent to Sean by his father were sometimes returned.
Despite international court battles and judgments, his wife refused to give up their son. She divorced her husband David, and she married a prominent Brazilian attorney named Juno Paulo Lins e Silva. In August of 2008, the unimaginable occurred when Bruna died giving birth to her new husband's baby. Bruna's new husband seemed even more determined to see that David remained out of his son Sean's life, and he petitioned the court in Brazil to have Goldman's name removed from his birth certificate after Bruna passed away.
David Goldman, however, had no intentions of giving up on ever seeing his son again. More determined than ever, and assisted by New Jersey State Rep Chris Smith, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Obama, David was finally successful in returning Sean to his home in New Jersey on Christmas Eve in 2009. Even though Goldman was successful in bringing his son home, the Brazilan family continued to bring court actions against Goldman, believing that Sean should be raised by Bruna's mother.
Each day since Sean returned home with his natural father, the two have grown closer and closer, establishing routines and trust and respect for each other. Even though not every day has been perfect, Sean is thriving in school and at home, since being returned to his birthplace and the home where his life began.
Well told, A Father's Love, is a poignant look at just how far a parent will go to do what is right on behalf of their child. I enjoyed this book, and feel that it not only tells the Goldman's story, but opens the communication to expose the fact that this is not an isolated case. International child abduction by parents is a very real problem that needs more exposure, and harsher penalties for offenders.