Torey Hayden


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When I first read One Child I was absolutely stunned. To hear the story of such a young girl going through a rough time that I couldn't even imagine intrigued me and I couldn't put the book down even for a second. After reading it in a matter of hours I forced my Mom to drive down to the nearest Hawley-Cooke and buy me The Tiger's Child. I just HAD to know was happened. What I found wasn't exactly what I had expected at all. First of all reading pages after page of what I had just read about the previous day kind of irritated me. When was the new story going to begin? I soon realized that she had seperated the book into three parts and once I got to part two my irritation turned into more of a steady concentration, soaking in every word that had been printed into this little life. I felt as if I new Sheila. Every little girl I saw with long bangs and dirty blonde hair I named Sheila saying things like, "Look, Mom! I bet that is what Sheila looked Like!" and then seeing girls my age and trying to turn Sheila's charector into a person that I new an loved. This only made me angry when I finished the book and couldn't find Sheila Renstad anywhere. Is she in California now? I guess I'll never know, but what I do know is that this bright and sometimes angry charect0or has changed my life. Maybe even forever. What I know for sure is that the day I finished the book I walked around very proud of what was happening. Sheila had grown up! She was probably older than my mother now, maybe almost as old as my grandma, but I'm not yet sure when the book was writen, any way that's against the point and back to what I was previously saying, Sheila changed the way I look at life now. Knowing that everything I have is a gift and that I should be proud of it because some less fortunate people may not have as good a life, or at least in my perspective...

>>By Liddie   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

Well Liddie... Sheila isn't the books Sheila's real name... It's for privaty. And Sheila is now something 30 yrs. The book was written about on the '70s and Tiger's Child on the '80s

I totally love Torey's books... I love 'Tiger's Child' the most!!

(i'm sorry my english and if I didn't understand what you wrote )

>>By Cleo   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)


I had to say that I watch too all blond little girls and wondering that her is maybe just like 'Sheila' was when she was kid... =)

>>By Cleo   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I read Torey's, One Child several years ago and was fascinated by her account of such a brave little girl.
Ever since I look out for Torey's books and virtually order/buy them straight away. I find her books really intriguing and hard to put down.

I've recently finished Beautiful Child, another wonderful masterpiece.

Well done Torey, I look forward to your next book.



>>By Tracey   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I was extremly fasicinated when I read the book "One Child". The devasting life that she had lived wiht her parents. Not even, I would trust anyone else if my parents had treated me with such cruelty. The ones are suppost to protect you from the world are the ones who through you the first shoot then why should she trust the world. I can say that, I read the book with a book of tissue. I was so touched by her story. Yet, It is sorry that there are many other children like Shiela. Just like my "Julie" one of my ex-students. I strongly recommend the book to educators with in the Special Education Field, helped me understand a bit more other than just a studet walking around with a label.

>>By Janie   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I really found Torey's book to be insperational. I am much like sheila. I was abuised as a child and ,my mom would leave me home by myself and I would literally start destroyinh everythign I could and one thing I wouldnt let anyone do is make me cry. U found this to be something that reminded me of how i reocvered because i also would never talk. Not for anyone. The only time i did tlak was to my stuffed dog. I can relate to this and id liekto thank torey for helong me out, Thanks!

>>By Samantha   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I first discovered your books when i was in high school, and now i'm 22 and have just finished your new book - Beautaful Child. i was so happy to discover that you had written a new book. You are a wonderful writer - you make your characters come to life with such flavor. i admire your skill as a teacher, and i must tell you that because of your books i have found my purpose in life because i want to work with emotionally disturbed children too. The system has changed since your days with "Shelia", but there is still a need for teachers like you. Thank God we ahve people like you to give some happiness to these children's tough lives. So sad what some children must go through in their short lives. i'm glad you make a difference!

>>By kimberly   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I read "Ghost Girl" and it sounded in many ways like the childhood life of one of my best friends. I hope somebody believed that poor girl, and I hope she is ok today. Thank you, Torey Hayden for having the courage to voice unspeakable things.

>>By Nancy   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

hi, as a teacher myself i really did understand everything you have written in the book Ghost Girl. i was so touch to know that everything you experienced with jadie i have experienced with another child but in so ways were a little different not to serious like jadie's problem. i'm glad that this book allows others who do not work with children to know that children do suffer and are scared to express there feelings do to someone who tells them it's wrong to tell others. again thanks

>>By wendy22   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I first read one of Torey Hayden's books when I found a copy of "The Tigers Child" in our garage. I read it in a matter of hours and from there on I was hooked. I had to go back and read "One Child." I had to know where it all begin. And after reading all of Torey's non-fiction books, I have concluded that "One Child" is my absolute favorite. The whole book was so inspirational and you had to feel for little Shelia. At the end I cryed...and then I read it again. I related to "One Child" in a way that is hard for me to describe because I am not abused and I am by far not a genusis, but I could relate to that one teacher who refuses to give up on you. I have one myself and couldn't have made it as far as I have without her. I admire Torey for her work as a teacher. She must be an inspiration to everyone she meets. Torey has also helped me in my decsion to want to become a teacher, only it won't be with special needs children as I am not that talented! Thanks Torey! Your my hero!

>>By Lindsey   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I love the books, and most important; The books inspire me in my work. I work with children too!

>>By Marie   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

dear torey,
hi my name is sam and i'm from the philippines. i loved "one child" and "the tiger's child" because at the time that i was reading al about sheila, i was going through a very rough time. i have a superior IQ and like sheila, i was molested and abused emotionaly and physically. sheila made me realize that the power of genius, courage, and a very encouraging mentor/friend are what it takes to be rescued. i found a mentor in my friend whom i am very close to until today. currently, i am seeking psychiatric help and first in my class. thank u torey. in so many ways, i am sheila renstad too. God bless you.

>>By sam   (Saturday, 25 Jan 2003 12:58)

I purchased "Beautiful Child" about 2 days ago and I'm almost finished with the book. I'm really looking forward to the outcome of you not giving up on Venus Fox. Thank you for writing such a wonderful book; it's given me ideas on how to take care of needy children and how to react to certain behaviors. I'm really enjoying your book!

>>By Cathy Garcia   (Tuesday, 4 Feb 2003 23:54)

Have enjoyed Torey's books a psych nurse, specialized in caring for children & adolescents...Torey's stories touch my heart, they are hard to put down once I start. Please come up with another soon.

>>By Sharon Fine   (Friday, 7 Feb 2003 13:00)

Right now i am reading one child. this book is very hard to put down! i love this book. it was recomended to me by a 11th grade english teacher. i am in 8th grade. i think this book is amzing!

>>By Cassie   (Sunday, 16 Feb 2003 16:33)

i love the sunflower forest, its great

>>By chels   (Monday, 3 Mar 2003 23:16)

I read Somebody Else's Kids and cried...It was beautifully written.

>>By Claudia   (Thursday, 20 Mar 2003 23:43)

Words cannot describe what this book has done for me. I am a foster parent and reading this has helped me better understand these children. It is so heartbreaking. I have always been drawn to kids in need. Recently I quit a very well paying job of many years to become a foster parent. The income drop has been major, but the smiles and steps that I have seen the children in my home make is beyond word and outweighs the financial crunch we have felt. Just a hug or an "You are so special and I care" does so much.
Walk proud Torey are truly one of our angels.

>>By Mary   (Wednesday, 26 Mar 2003 15:58)

Tory Hayden books inspire me so much. It amazing that she could write about such painful but yet maningful life.

>>By Tameka   (Tuesday, 1 Apr 2003 23:10)

Each book makes me look at my own life as a teacher and wonder what kind of impact I make on my own students lives.

>>By Theresa   (Friday, 18 Apr 2003 01:23)

Each book makes me look at my own life as a teacher and wonder what kind of impact I make on my students lives.

>>By Theresa   (Friday, 18 Apr 2003 01:24)

hello torey,
My name is valerie and i am fourteen years old.I live in quebec.Scuse me my
english is not perfect.It's beaucause I'am a french girl.New subject :I read under
ten your book the chil and listen any times any books.Your the best ,for my .In the futur ,I would like make a same work of you.I am in acceuil enter in rouyn-noranda.Because bad girl.My dream is see you beaucouse...
I wish see you one day.Good bye whit love.I wish receve a letter return
yours struly valerie thibeault

>>By valerie thibeault   (Tuesday, 22 Apr 2003 04:19)

I just read Beutiful child and I think that it is very good, amazing! :)

>>By Tarja   (Tuesday, 29 Apr 2003 13:54)

i just finished the book one child and i loved it! i was laughing crying and getting really angry throughout the whole book it has such feeling to it my teacher Mrs Harvey saw how much i loved it and let me do a report on it instead of the actual assigned book i had a great time reading it

>>By Lauren 13   (Friday, 2 May 2003 05:54)

I am working on my credential in special education. Reading "Just Another Kid" was an assignment that turned out to be a blessing. Thank you for sharing your experiences.

>>By Whitney   (Sunday, 4 May 2003 03:04)

im totally hooked on torey's books.and needless to say, i have everyone of them.the first book i read was "just another kid"and it really touched my heart.i learned that no matter who you are, rich or poor, regardless of your age, you still can be trapped in a world of darkness, where you can't see what's ahead of you.and torey's book, writes about real people with real problems.we tend to neglect the world around us,but i hope one day when we open our eyes and see,it's no longer so ugly.

>>By caragh   (Monday, 12 May 2003 19:30)

Dear Torey,

I'd just like to say 'Thank You!' I also have many problems with myself and sometimes I even think of suicide. But now I know that why I should be brave and face the world... At least I have parents and sister. I wish I knew what the real Sheila is upto now.. I only read One Child so far-didn't know that there were other books. I'm going to read all of 'em!!!! The world needs people like you! Thank You.

>>By Danielle   (Monday, 19 May 2003 16:53)

I was asked by one of my teachers to read "Just Another Kid" because I was going into education with disabilities and this book is just what I needed to get me thinking about what I would be going through. I loved that book and now I have been reading all of your books and they all seem to be very meaning full and have something that no other book has. But I just can't name what that is.

>>By June   (Friday, 23 May 2003 15:12)

I have been inspired by all of Torey Hayden's books. The portrayal of the teacher's aide in Beautiful Child is very thought provoking. The aide was intelligent and articulate, but seemed to be missing the big picture or the passion to make a change in the children's lives for the better. Perhaps, she was negative because she was unhappy with her own life. Anyway, loved the book!

>>By Susan Logan   (Sunday, 1 Jun 2003 16:31)

I was looking for a copy of the letter/poem at the beginning of one child, '...then you came with your funny way of being....' would anyone be able to post it?

>>By Trish   (Friday, 6 Jun 2003 18:14)

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