Review: One Child by Torey Hayden


Blurb on One Child (was not able to find a good summary off of Goodreads)

Sheila came into Torey Hayden’s class for “special children” at the age of 6 after having tied a 3-year-old child to a tree and critically burned him.

ONE CHILD is Torey Hayden’s story of her attempt to tap the unbelievable capacity of this tortured child. 

Parts of this book – the savage sexual molestation – will enrage you. Parts of this book – Sheila’s quiet description of her anger and fears and doubts – will make you cry. And parts of this book – Sheila’s gradual realization of her own potential – may make you cheer. 

Whatever your reaction, I think you will agree that it has been a long time since you have read a book with the sheer emotional impact of ONE CHILD

New York Times Book Review

My Review

One Child tells the heartbreaking yet devastatingly beautiful story of a teacher’s journey as she struggles to save a child from the darkness that surrounds her. The story is written by the teacher herself Torey Hayden as she first encounters a very special 6 year old girl who has been the victim of many horrors in her short life. Together they both grow in their understanding of one another as they face the trials that come from abuse.

This book is not to be taken lightly, the events in this story felt so very real, yet at the same time I found myself thinking: “no way this possibly happened, this is too horrible.” I had to remind myself that the events in this book had indeed happened, and the people were also quite real. Reading One Child both restored and dampened my faith in humanity at the same time. Torey Hayden has a beautiful style of narration and a wonderful way of painting her views about the world. She has a unique and relatable perspective on human nature that made me stop and think as I read so many of her profound lines.

One Child is a must read for anyone and everyone. It places great perspective on the lifestyles of those with mental disabilities, or those who have suffered from abuse and neglect. Furthermore, it exemplifies how selfless those who work with such affected people truly are. I would definitely recommend reading this lovely and touching story if only to gain a new view on something that so many of us are ignorant of.

Buy it on Amazon here!


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