A Child Called 'It'

  • by David Pelzer
  • Narrated by Brian Keeler
  • 3 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Dave Pelzer's astonishing, disturbing account of his early years describes one of the most severe child-abuse cases in California history. This book spent over 175 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list and was also nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Dave was in first grade when his unstable alcoholic mother began attacking him. Until he was in fifth grade, she starved, beat, and psychologically ravaged her son. Eventually denying even his identity, Dave's mother called him an "it" instead of using his name. Relentlessly, she drove him to the brink of death before authorities finally stepped in. With faith and hope, Dave grew determined to survive. He also knew that he needed to share his story.
A Child Called "It" is the first of three books that chronicle his life. Through publications and public appearances, Dave is now recognized as one of the nation's most effective and respected speakers about child abuse.


What the Critics Say

"Pelzer's portrayal of domestic tyranny and eventual escape is unforgettable." (School Library Journal)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Too Sad....

Just a horribly sad story. I feel so bad for that poor child. How could a mother be that cruel? Listener beware: some of the incidents are utterly gross. Not for those with light stomachs. I truly hopes this helps educate others on child abuse. Other than that, I thought this was a heartfelt story of a child who overcomes all obstacles in the end. With that said, considering the story's main character was a boy, you'd think they'd try a get a narrator with a younger voice. Safe to say, I wasn't too keen on the narrator as I thought this one's voice was dull and boring.

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- steve "Addicted to Audible since 2009"


Being an adoptive and foster parent myself, this story is especially personal. Some have questioned the plausibility of David Pelzer’s account. I certainly can believe it may be all true and have heard similar stories in my area. Even if some of the details have been changed or slightly exaggerated, it’s really irrelevant. There’s no question that the abuse this boy suffered is very real.

Let this story inspire you to get involved! In my state alone there 1400 children in the foster care system looking for forever families.
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- Mark Acker "Husband, father, nurse, geek culture affianado, tech junkie, late-blooming history lover, armchair theologist, Lego enthusiast, and follower of Christ."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-18-2007
  • Publisher: Recorded Books