Steve Pemberton’s book, A Chance in the World, is heartbreaking yet uplifting, tragic yet triumphant, discouraging yet inspiring. The subtitle tells it all: An Orphan Boy, a Mysterious Past, and How He Found a Place Called Home.
He was born Steve Klakowicz in New Bedford, Massachusetts. At age five, he was placed in a a foster home that can only be described as evil. Through the kindness of one woman, he discovered his love for reading and he would hole up in his foster family’s dark and damp basement to lose himself in other worlds and dream about what his life could be like. He managed to escape that foster hell and graduated from Boston College. But that bright future was haunted by his past and he set out to find his birth family. What he found on that journey answered many questions about his origins, but also caused him to examine what family really means.
On any given day, there are nearly 450,000 children in the U.S. in foster care. And each year, nearly 25,000 kids will age out of foster care and group homes. Steve hopes his book and a foundation that he has established can work towards making a difference. He talks with Woman Around Town’s Editor Charlene Giannetti about his book and growing up in foster care.