A Child called "It" Book Report Essay

The book I read was `A Child Called It’ by Dave Pelzer - A Child called "It" Book Report Essay introduction. The book is an autobiography of Pelzer. He writes about his struggle to stay alive in a home where he is treated like a slave and an animal. The book begins with the people at Dave’s school finally report Dave and his condition to the authorities. Then he tells us about his past when he still lived in a happy, normal family. Dave had a mother, father and 2 older brothers. While his Father is at work as a fire fighter, his mother turns to alcohol. She starts treating Dave like an animal and makes him lives in the garage and sleeps there too. She would grab him and smash him in the mirror, when the family is having dinner she would make him sit in a POW (prisoner of war) position. Sometimes she would make him starve..The book describes the worsening abuse which Pelzer suffered at the hand of his mother and her alcoholism. Among the many incidents discussed is that Ms. Roerva attempted to burn Dave on a stove when he was eight years old. She also stabbed him in the stomach, and did not take him to the hospital. By this point he was no longer considered as part of the family and lived in the basement denied basic contact, play and food. Ms. Roerva has stated that she did not want Dave to interact with “her family” demonstrating the lack of regard in which he was held.

Over time the depth of the abuse worsened. Dave claims he was forced to sit in the Prisoner of War position (head bent backwards facing sky and sitting on hands). His mother stopped using his name and began referring to him first as “The Boy” and finally “It”. The punishments are reported to have evolved into ‘sick games’ in which Ms. Roerva made her son suffer.

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Incidents cited in the book include; dingleberry forcing ammonia down his throat, cleaning a sealed bathroom while inhaling the fumes from a bucket of ammonia mixed with chlorine bleach, inducing vomiting followed by forced ingestion, smashing his face against a mirror while forcing him to say “I’m a bad boy”, lying in the bathtub naked with freezing water for hours, an ‘accidental’ stabbing, rubbing his face in his baby brother’s soiled diaper, making him eat his youngest brother’s feces out of his diaper, as well as starvation and general malnutrition.

In each of the sequels, the author reveals more forms of torture he didn’t
describe in this book (e.g. his mother hit his neck with a broom handle, causing his neck to swell so he couldn’t breathe)..

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