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A Child Called It [Summary & Takeaways]

by The Quick Book Summary Team
3 minutes read

Main Topic

The main topic of “A Child Called It” is the harrowing true story of Dave Pelzer’s childhood survival through extreme abuse and neglect. The book explores the resilience and courage of a young boy facing unimaginable circumstances.

Key Ideas or Arguments Presented

  • Abuse and Survival: The narrative revolves around Dave Pelzer’s endurance of severe physical and emotional abuse at the hands of his alcoholic mother.
  • Resilience: Despite the brutal circumstances, Pelzer’s story highlights the human capacity for resilience and the will to survive.

Chapter Titles or Main Sections

  1. The Lost Boy: Describes Pelzer’s early life and the escalating abuse.
  2. Rescue: Chronicles Pelzer’s removal from his abusive home by authorities.
  3. Triumph and Beyond: Explores Pelzer’s journey to overcome trauma and build a new life.

A Child Called It

by Dave Pelzer


Key Takeaways

  • Resilience Triumphs: Pelzer’s ability to survive and ultimately triumph over adversity is a central takeaway.
  • Importance of Intervention: The story underscores the critical role of intervention in protecting vulnerable children.

Author’s Background and Qualifications

Dave Pelzer is an American author and motivational speaker. His personal experience as a survivor of child abuse informs the authenticity of the narrative.

Comparison to Other Books

Compared to other books on child abuse, Pelzer’s work stands out for its raw, firsthand perspective, providing a deeply personal account of the effects of abuse on a child.

Target Audience

The book is intended for readers interested in memoirs, psychology, and stories of triumph over adversity. However, due to the intense subject matter, it may not be suitable for sensitive readers.

Reception or Critical Response

“A Child Called It” received both acclaim and criticism. While praised for its honesty and shedding light on child abuse, some critics questioned the book’s authenticity.

Publisher and First Published Date

Published by Health Communications, Inc. in 1995, the book quickly gained attention for its powerful narrative.


To Sum Up

The book powerfully illustrates the triumph of resilience over extreme adversity in the face of severe childhood abuse, leaving readers with a profound appreciation for the strength of the human spirit.

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