My Story (Trilogy) by David Pelzer Monday, Feb 13 2012 

Title: My Story
Author: David Pelzer
ISBN: 0752864017
Rating: 3/5

Synopsis:
All three of the books that chronicle the horrific abuse suffered by David Pelzer as a child, and his survival against the odds.

Review:
A Child Called “It”:
As a child, Dave was brutally beaten and starved by his emotionally unstable, alcoholic mother: a mother who played tortuous games – games that almost killed him. With only his willpower to survive, Dave learned how to play his Mother’s sinister games in order to survive because she no longer considered Dave a son but a slave, and no longer a boy but an “It.”

The harrowing true story of David Pelzer was the third-worst case of child abuse on record in the entire state of California. If that’s so, you have to wonder about just how horrendous the other two cases were because it’s amazing he ever survived to adulthood.

The Lost Boy:
As a child, Dave Pelzer was brutally beaten and starved by his mother. The world knew nothing of his living nightmare and he had nothing and no one to turn to. But his dreams kept him alive – dreams of someone taking care of him, loving him and calling him their son. Finally, his horrific plight could no longer be hidden from the outside world and Dave’s life radically changed. The Lost Boy is the harrowing – but ultimately uplifting – true story of a boy’s journey through the foster-care system in search of a family to love. The continuation of Dave Pelzer’s story is a moving sequel and inspirational read for all. Essentially, The Lost Boy is a story of regeneration and resilience.

A Man Named Dave:
The third tale in David Pelzer’s autobiographical trilogy, A Man Named Dave is an inspiring story of terror, recovery and hope experienced by the author throughout his life. Known for his work as an advocate against child abuse, Pelzer has been commended by several US presidents and international agencies, and his previous memoirs of growing up as an abused child (A Child Called It and The Lost Boy) have touched thousands of lives. He provides living proof that we can “stop the cycle” and lead fulfilling, rewarding lives full of healthy relationships.

It has been a little while since I read the first part of this trilogy, but as it was so harrowing, it has stayed fresh in my mind, so I was able to pick up where I left off. Pelzer’s story remains one of the most horrific child abuse cases in living memory and his never-ending search for answers is heartrending. Being able to follow his life story through to a conclusion of any kind (he’s still alive and well, so his story is not done just yet!) makes this a satisfying read and the sheer amount of work he has done towards helping others in similar situations is an inspiration. This really is a must-read trilogy, if only so we never forget what can and does happen in families all over the world, and work towards ensuring that it stops.


A Child Called It by David Pelzer Wednesday, Jan 14 2009 

Title: A Child Called It
Author: David Pelzer
ISBN: 0752837508
Rating: 4/5

Synopsis:
Dave Pelzer was brutally beaten and starved by his emotionally unstable, alcoholic mother, a mother who played tortuous, unpredictable games – games that left one of her three sons nearly dead. She no longer considered Dave a son, but a slave; no longer a boy, but an ‘it’. His bed was an old army cot in the basement, his clothes were torn and smelly, and when he was allowed the luxury of food it was scraps from the dog’s bowl. The outside world knew nothing of the nightmare played out behind closed doors. But throughout Dave kept alive dreams of finding a family to love him. This book covers the early years of his life and is an affecting an inspirational book of the horrors of child abuse and the steadfast determination of one child to survive. ‘Dave Pelzer conveys brilliantly how his own determination allowed him to keep alive his dream of one day find a family who would be proud to call him their son. Truly touching, and emotionally shocking.

Review:
The harrowing true story of David Pelzer was the third-worst case of child abuse on record in the entire state of
California. If that’s so, you have to wonder about just how horrendous the other two cases were because it’s amazing he ever survived to adulthood.

Written from David’s point of view, the book is very much in the style of a young child, wondering what it is that he’s done to deserve this “punishment” from his mother, as she has completely brainwashed him into believing that he has brought everything on himself; that he is at fault for being a “bad boy”. The chilling calculation of a mother obsessed with destroying her own child leaves the mind reeling. What causes a mother to choose one child over another, to single him out for such torturous abuse?

It’s an intriguing study of just how long such occurrences can continue before something is done to remove a child from an abusive environment. I cried real tears over the life of this young boy; his self-sufficiency and, ultimately, his survival skills (and the necessity for him to develop them in the first place) are shocking and one cannot comprehend what kind of mental illness would lead to this happening (as his mother was clearly very sick and in need of professional help).

This is an incredibly difficult book to read, but one of those books you cannot put down – you have to keep on reading to the end. The violence depicted in the pages is terrifying and to think of anyone enduring any of it, let alone a small child, is something that made me feel physically ill, but also filled me with admiration at David’s courage.