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Out of the Darkness Audiobook

Out of the Darkness: The Story of Mary Ellen Wilson

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Publisher's Summary

In New York City, in April of 1874, a most unusual event took place. A severely abused nine-year-old girl named Mary Ellen Wilson became the first child in America to be rescued from an abusive home. She had been beaten, burned, slashed with scissors, locked in a closet, and had never been outside of her tenement home in over 7 years. Thanks to the concern and dedication of a missionary named Etta Wheeler, the child was finally saved from her cruel captors. Henry Bergh's ASPCA - yes, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals - was instrumental in securing her rescue. When no other agencies would become involved, the ASPCA used its power and influence to not only save Mary Ellen, but to charter the first organization of its kind to prevent cruelty to children, the NYSPCC - the New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. This book remains the only book that tells the dramatic story of Mary Ellen's life and rescue.

©Print Version: 1999 Audiobook: 2014 Dolphin Moon Publishing (P)2014 Dolphin Moon Publishing

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (142 )
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4.1 (128 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Debra Cox 06-18-14
    Debra Cox 06-18-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "History, Human suffering, drama, all in one"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Out of the Darkness to be better than the print version?

    Yes, the characters were brought to life. The drama felt real. The descriptions of the living conditions, how people were treated, felt more intense.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Out of the Darkness?

    When Little Mary Ellen was being tortured by her "mama" and her "papa"... definitely got my heart racing wanting to know how she would be saved...I also was very angry when the horses were being mistreated... especially the one in the snow.


    What about Deb Thomas’s performance did you like?

    Characters were easy to differentiate. Felt like she was rooting for Mary Ellen, too. Her male voices were quite good! Also, you could feel the hatred and anger when she was voicing Mary Ellen's "MAMA"... a bit eerie...


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    YES!... I cried and was very distraught at many points during this book. And I was elated when she was rescued, as well as heartbroken at her condition and her innocence of her own condition.


    Any additional comments?

    Great audio book! I especially liked the behind the scenes drama regarding the ASPCA, and how that pre dated the New York Children's Services. I can't imagine how children survived back then. Strong people.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sharon Nolen 03-25-15
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    "Great story."

    Although a very sad story, it was told really well & I found it hard to turn it off. Thoroughly recommended!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maria T. Halliday Vermilion, OH 01-05-15
    Maria T. Halliday Vermilion, OH 01-05-15
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    "Good narration"

    She did all different voices, which I enjoyed. I wish more time was spent on the story of Mary Ellen a bit more, but it was, overall, a good book!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    musa 03-21-17
    musa 03-21-17 Member Since 2014
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    "Harrowing Story"

    The story was terrifying and awful but I loved learning the history. Well written. However I feel the narration was not right. The voices done by the narrator seemed almost cartoonish. Had it not been for my interest in the history I would have turned it off.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mom2673 11-23-16
    mom2673 11-23-16
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    "Fascinating, just fascinating!"
    What made the experience of listening to Out of the Darkness the most enjoyable?

    I almost wasn't going to listen to it. It started off a little strange to me in the beginning but I thought I better hold out and see where this goes. I am glad I did hold out. This was amazing. To learn how the ASPCC evolved from the ASPCA was especially interesting.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Out of the Darkness?

    I found myself riveted when the woman lied to the mother and from that moment on this little girls life just kept taking bizarre twists and turns!


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Obviously, the ending was the best part. To learn how normal her life ended up being was just as fascinating to me as the entire book itself.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    a little girls love beyond the terrors of her reality.


    Any additional comments?

    I read that some people didn't care for the narrator. I think she did a great job. Helped me keep each character straight and I felt it gave the book a little more life and reality. Just a great book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tiana Dart 03-21-16
    Tiana Dart 03-21-16 Member Since 2017
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    "Amazing Story"

    As someone who was rescued from an abusive home, this story was especially great. Those of us who have been saved from childhoods similar to that of Mary Ellen's owe our "second lives" (as I refer to mine) to Henry Bergh, Etta Wheeler, and those alike who dedicate their time and hearts to help those in need.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. DeVries Northwest, IN. 11-04-15
    D. DeVries Northwest, IN. 11-04-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Humanity at it's worst and best."
    If you could sum up Out of the Darkness in three words, what would they be?

    Interesting - History - overcoming


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Many of her voices...I was not really happy with...too much...over acting...southern voices in New York...was out of place to me. Her narrating did not stop me from listening & enjoying the book...but some character voices became irritating to me.


    Any additional comments?

    This was a book that I did want to listen to all in one sitting...but it took two sittings. The writer had a lot of history..which some say dragged on, but I didn't feel that way. I enjoyed all of the book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer 07-16-15
    Jennifer 07-16-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Captivating"

    Beyond the story of abuse lies the history of an intertwining of a love for animals and children alike. Excellent piece!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nettie 04-26-15
    Nettie 04-26-15
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    "great book"

    I thought it was a great book .expect for the end which kinda was dragged out to long

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbra Guffee 06-25-14
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    "historical fiction"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes it was easy to listen to and kept my attention


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, it was very easy to listen to. Some audio books can distract from the story.


    4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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