Baby X is a shocking and unforgettable story of how some of the UK's most disadvantaged children escaped their tormentors - and explains why some cases, similar to that of Baby P's, ended in tragedy. When super-tough cop Sergeant Harry Keeble announced he was joining Hackney's ailing Child Protection Team in 2000, his colleagues were astounded. Known as the 'Cardigan Squad', its officers were seen as glorified social workers dealing with domestics.
The reality was very different. Within a few months he'd fought machete-wielding thugs, rescued kids who had pit bulls chained to their cots and confronted the horrors of African witchcraft, exposing a network of abuse in the process - all in his unrelenting war against child cruelty. Harry rescued dozens of kids - kids in crack houses, kids living in unimaginable filth and kids who had burned their houses down. Then there were the hostage situations, the lynch mobs, and the almost impossible process of interviewing paedophiles to get a confession. Without wading in sentimentality, he describes how his team - working alongside dedicated but chronically underfunded social workers - operated at the sharp end of child protection.
©2010 Harry Keeble (P)2011 Audible Ltd
Yes, the story is honestly written
Yes, the horrific honest details
Due to his accent he made them all come alive
Not for the faint hearted
I am a big fan of torey hayden, Cathy glass and the like, it's at least in part due to Ms Hayden that I teach special needs learners. So when I saw this which seemed to show a different side of what happens to/with these kids I was curious.
I bought it some time ago and it took me a while to start it, but once I did I was hooked.
Not a book for the sensitive, you need to have a bit of detachment to listen to what they are involved with, but as a teacher who has also worked in prisons, I have already seen a bit, and felt I could cope.
Even then there were a few bits where I cringed, it was tough hearing what these kids have gone through, but there were heartwarming bits as well.
This is definitely not a book to listen to if you are tender hearted, but for those who deal with kids on a day to day basis it's an invaluable insight into what the police do and deal with.
As to the narrator, I loved him, he does some fab accents, and at times I felt like I was listening to a little girl talk.
"More lightweight than weighty."
This book is at times extremely harrowing to listen to but it ebbs and flows between the weightiest and most lightweight of material. It is if you like a case by case history of Harry Keebles time with the Mets child protection unit but the book is also frequently used by the author as a social political commentary on the state of child protection services in the UK. The problem was that many of the cases just don't have the legs or the detail to make it interesting to the reader. Maybe if author had extended his time with child protection then he might have had a few more interesting stories to tell.
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