This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

A Child Called It: One Child's…

A Child Called "It": One Child's Courage to Survive (original 1995; edition 1995)

by Dave Pelzer

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6,708278866 (3.89)52
Title:A Child Called "It": One Child's Courage to Survive
Authors:Dave Pelzer
Info:HCI (1995), Edition: ZZZ, Paperback, 195 pages
Collections:non-fiction, Your library
Tags:memoir, psychology

Work details

A Child Called "It" by Dave Pelzer (Author) (1995)

  1. 20
    One Child: The True Story of a Tormented Six-Year-Old and the Brilliant Teacher Who Reached Out by Torey L. Hayden (Moniica)
  2. 21
    Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs (PortiaLong)
    PortiaLong: Disturbing memoirs - I disliked them both for the same reasons (so someone else may LIKE them for those same reasons).
  3. 12
    The Little Prisoner by Jane Elliott (mariah2, Kerian)

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 52 mentions

English (268)  German (4)  Swedish (2)  Lithuanian (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (276)
Showing 1-5 of 268 (next | show all)
This is a true story book about the author, David, who was severely abused as a child from about age 6 to age 11. It tells the story of a child that spent most days starving, living in a cold basement, working chores until he couldn't stand, and not even being called by his name. This became the 3rd worst case of child abuse in CA history.

I had a hard time with this book. I was so angry reading it. I could not even imagine how this could go on for 5 years and he couldn't get away. He was in public school. He was forced to wear basically the same outfit everyday. He stole food. He was covered with bruises. His mother burned him and stabbed him. And yet, it took 5 years for him to be rescued.

The "happy ending" is - David Pelzer is a full functioning adult with a family and children. He has spoken all over the country about the abuse and promoting reporting child abuse. But this book. I just could not get over how awful it was. I have been extra kind to my own kiddos because I would never want them to feel anything but love from me. He didn't deserve what happened to him. No kid deserves that. ( )
  JenMat | Jan 10, 2019 |
This book is so sad. The story of how awful this young man was treated is so heart wrenching. His mother should have had all her children taken away from her and not just Dave.
Dave's case of abuse was the worst case in CA history. The sad part is that he isn't the worse case anymore. ( )
  LVStrongPuff | Nov 29, 2018 |
A Child Called “It” provides a first hand account of abuse and the strength it takes to withstand it. Full of power and emotions, the story leaves some questions as to why certain things happened, yet it perfectly describes life in that some things don’t have answers. ( )
  Preston.Kringle | Nov 23, 2018 |
I dove into this book not fully aware of the controvery surrounding it. When I finished it, I immediatley did some Googling and found out some interesting tidbits... I must then go with my gut instinct and conclude that this book is not completely true...

First of all, we see the mother go from the perfect parent to a hell-beast. Where's the gray area? What happened to this woman?

Pelzer nominated this book for a Pulitzer. Um, what? And both his brother and his grandma went on some talk show and said that this book is bul... so.

I mean, it COULD be true. Forgive me even if it is a tiny bit true. ( )
  bookishblond | Oct 24, 2018 |
I remember finding and reading this book in Books-A-Million a number of years ago during one of those "mommy's night out" moments. It was horrifying, heartbreaking and sickening, but so well written that it was pretty much impossible to put down. ( )
  emeraldgirl68 | Sep 30, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 268 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Pelzer, DaveAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gyllenhak, UlfTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
This book is dedicated to my son Stephen, who, by the grace of God, has taught me the gift of love and joy through the eyes of a child. This book is also dedicated to the teachers and staff members of Thomas Edison Elementary School to include: Stephen E. Ziegler, Athena Konstan, Peter Hansen, Joyce Woodworth, Janice Woods, Betty Howell, and the School Nurse. To all of you, for your courage and for putting your careers on the line that fateful day, March 5, 1973. You saved my life.
First words
March 5, 1973, Daly City, California - I'm late.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English


Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

[This book] is [an] account of one of the most severe child abuse cases in California history. It is the story of Dave Pelzer, who was brutally beaten and starved by his emotionally unstable, alcoholic mother: a mother who played torturous, unpredictable games - games that left him nearly dead. He had to learn how to play his mother's games in order to survive because she no longer considered him a son, but a slave; and no longer a boy, but an "it." -Back cover.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 12 descriptions

Quick Links

Popular covers


Average: (3.89)
0.5 8
1 63
1.5 11
2 128
2.5 23
3 372
3.5 66
4 553
4.5 61
5 685

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 131,660,519 books! | Top bar: Always visible