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by Torey Hayden
ISBN 0380813394 / 9780380813391 / 0-380-81339-4
Publisher William Morrow
› Find signed collectible books: 'Beautiful Child'
More than two decades ago, in her unforgettable international bestseller One Child, author Torey Hayden chronicled her poignant struggle to help a severely troubled little girl. Over the ensuing years, this dedicated special education teacher has faced many other heartbreaking challenges -- and has never abandoned a child in need.Beautiful ChildSeven-year-old Venus Fox's unresponsiveness was so complete that Torey Hayden initially believed the child was deaf. Venus never spoke, never listened, never even acknowledged the presence of another human being in the room with her. Yet an accidental playground bump would release a rage frightening to behold, turning the little girl into a whirling dynamo of dangerous malice.Of the five children in Torey's classroom that September, Venus posed the greatest challenge -- though the other four had serious problems of their own that could not be overlooked. The six-year-old twins Shane and Zane suffered from fetal alcohol syndrome and its accompanying mix of high agitation and low concentration. At nine, cocky, aggressive Billy had already been expelled from school twice. Eight-year-old Jesse suffered from Tourette's syndrome. And then there was Venus. Though all of the children had different needs and afflictions, they had two things in common: a profound, sometimes violent dislike of one another, and the desire to be almost anywhere other than Torey's class. The school year that followed would prove to be one of the most trying, perplexing, and ultimately rewarding of Torey's career, as she struggled to reach a silent child in obvious pain and need and, at the same time, create an atmosphere of learning and cooperation in a class bent on chaos. It would be a strenuous journey beset by seemingly insurmountable obstacles and darkened by truly terrible revelations -- yet encouraged by sometimes small, sometimes dazzling breakthroughs -- as an intrepid teacher remained committed to helping a hopeless girl, andlead her toward the light of a new day. In this remarkably moving account, Torey Hayden once again displays the insight, intelligence, humor, and, most important, the indomitable heart that have made her previous books not only phenomenal bestsellers worldwide but required reading for anyone personally touched by or interested in the treatment of emotionally disturbed children. [via]