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A Child Called 'It': One Child's Courage to Survive | [David Pelzer]

A Child Called 'It': One Child's Courage to Survive

Dave was in first grade when his unstable alcoholic mother began attacking him. Until he was in fifth grade, she starved, beat, and psychologically ravaged her son. Eventually denying even his identity, Dave's mother called him an "it" instead of using his name. Relentlessly, she drove him to the brink of death before authorities finally stepped in. With faith and hope, Dave grew determined to survive. He also knew that he needed to share his story.
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Publisher's Summary

Dave Pelzer's astonishing, disturbing account of his early years describes one of the most severe child-abuse cases in California history. This book spent over 175 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list and was also nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.

Dave was in first grade when his unstable alcoholic mother began attacking him. Until he was in fifth grade, she starved, beat, and psychologically ravaged her son. Eventually denying even his identity, Dave's mother called him an "it" instead of using his name. Relentlessly, she drove him to the brink of death before authorities finally stepped in. With faith and hope, Dave grew determined to survive. He also knew that he needed to share his story.

A Child Called "It" is the first of three books that chronicle his life. Through publications and public appearances, Dave is now recognized as one of the nation's most effective and respected speakers about child abuse.

Listen to the second book in David Pelzer's harrowing, multi-part memoir of child abuse: The Lost Boy.

©1995 David Pelzer; (P)2001 Recorded Books

What the Critics Say

"Pelzer's portrayal of domestic tyranny and eventual escape is unforgettable." (School Library Journal)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (413 )
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4.2 (243 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Jeffrey Highland Park, NJ, United States 07-10-08
    Jeffrey Highland Park, NJ, United States 07-10-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    108
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    "Marketing Abuse"

    I wish this were a better review, I really dp. The book happens to be extremely well written; it is compelling, powerful and moving.
    So why not 5 stars?
    The answer, in short, is that its too good; the recollection of what happened in first and second grade etc. is too vivid, and too exact. Can you recall verbatim dialogue from when you were 9? Maybe here or there, maybe once in a while, but day after day? And by extension, the recall of sequence of very specific events, sounds, smells, gestures, movements are presented in perfectly accurate detail...as if they just happened yesterday.

    While I do not want to suggest that Pelzer did not go through hell, I am equally convinced that we live in a day and age when embellishment is confused for non-fiction, and we buy pretending its all real. This seems to also be the conclusion of a July 2002 NY Times Magazine article about Pelzer and his story.
    I am therefore left sad; sad for his experience, and equally sad of the way we sometimes look to make money.

    2 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. 02-01-08
    C. 02-01-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    302
    5
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    0
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    Overall
    "Not worth your time and money"

    Not worth your time or money.

    This book is advertised as an autobiography. However, it is little more than a fable written by someone who is not an author. This book is deceiving in its claim to be a true story; and even if it had claimed to being a fable, it would have been deceiving in its weak proses.

    This audiobook is quite simply deceiving.

    2 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    barbara Brookside, Australia 06-18-08
    barbara Brookside, Australia 06-18-08 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    Overall
    "sad but repetitive"

    Obviously a tragic story, unfortunately the telling of it left a lot to be desired. It was repetitive and seemed characterless. The extreme abuse was probably accepted by the writer as something he had to just deal with but the story was so bland I didn't even bother listening to the end.

    0 of 8 people found this review helpful
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