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One child's courage to survive
A Child Called It (Audio Cassette)
Member Name: carlz2001uk
A Child Called It (Audio Cassette)
Advantages: Narrator easy to listen to, has breaks every three minutes so easy to pause it
Disadvantages: Harrowing tale (not easy to listen to in this respect)
I've never really been one for audio books but when I saw this for sale at a really cheap price I just couldn't leave it. I had read the books but quite a few years ago and it was always one that I said I would read again (or listen to!).
The book made quite a stir when it was first released, and is quite a harrowing tale of the authors abuse at the hands of his mother who treats him savagely, playing emotional games throughout his childhood. Her unpredictable behaviour meant that as a child, Dave didn't have a clue if he was coming or going, and often was thought of as a slave, being made to sleep in the basement, and eating his meals from a dogs bowl. As a parent it is harrowing to listen to how a child could be treat in such an unforgiveable way. I do think that regardless of whether or not you have children, you would have to be heartless to feel a lack of compassion for an innocent child, but having children, you can really put it into perspective.
The book is covered over four discs in total, which isn't a problem for me. I didn't want to listen to the whole thing in one or two go's and instead preferred to take advantage of the short breaks. The breaks are around every 3 minutes and aren't long pauses but more like the end of a sentence or paragraph, and the pause is very short but gives you the opportunity to stop at a place where it can be easily picked up again. The audio book is unabridged which is essential for any audio book in my opinion as you don't want to be reading half a book. The total length of the audio book is 3 hours and 46 minutes.
Pelzer is American, so as you would expect it is narrated by an American, Brian Keeler. This wasn't an issue in the slightest and he was easy to listen to, and it was nicely paced. I've always been put off with audio books as I expected that the narrator may start trying to do different accents, etc when new characters start talking. As this biography is in the first person, it isn't really an issue and it's so easy to sit back and listen once you have got used to someone reading to you, after a while you begin to think that Keeler is Pelzer who is simply telling you his story.
Obviously the content is pretty horrific and graphic in places, so while I will recommend this audio book, I do so only if you are able to listen to something so upsetting and a tale that is most definitely not fictional.
There has been skeptism of Pelzers accounts and one New York Times article tried to completely falsify any claims Dave Pelzer made. This for me, only makes what Dave went through even worse, as he had the courage to tell his story. It is perhaps rather ironic that the New York Times questioned the accuracy of his account, yet the book spent over 175 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list (and was also nominated for the Pulitzer Prize). How ironic!
There are three books that give his accounts, this being the first. All three books are available as audio books.
Available from Amazon for £9.95, but I paid under a fiver from a discount book shop.
Summary: 4 stars
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