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Kathy's Story: A Childhood Hell Inside the Magdalen Laundries Paperback – 9 Jun 2005


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Mainstream Publishing; 1st edition edition (9 Jun. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1840189681
  • ISBN-13: 978-1840189681
  • Product Dimensions: 15.4 x 1.8 x 23.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 33,134 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Kathy O'Beirne has led the campaign for justice for Magdalen girls in Ireland for the past 11 years.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Cate on 17 April 2012
Format: Paperback
This is a fictional story, please don't be deceived by it. Its a genre which unfortunately sells.Please read Kathy's real story.In short.She made it up.Kathy's Real Story: A Culture of False Allegations Exposed
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful By KittyCatastrophe on 29 Nov. 2007
Format: Paperback
I brought this book some time ago & was genuinely moved it. The things this poor women went through were truely horrific....
....then I found out that the nasty little woman made it all up! How dare she! There are many people that have actually had to suffer these experiences and are probably too scared, even today, to tell their stories. Not our Kathy, hey? She's all too happy to reap the benefits of telling such a disturbing story of her life without ever actually having to go through any of it herself...well done!

Maybe she should be made to go and speak to some REAL victims of the Laundries to give her some idea of how awful she really is for doing this?

Also...to all those saying 'I do not understand how anyone could believe that Kathy lied about this story. Why would anyone lie about such a horrific past?' or 'i find it very difficult to believe that someone would make up such horrific lies about their past' - you need a reality check.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Brandon on 28 Nov. 2012
Format: Paperback
As has been well documented by now, "Kathy's Story/Don't Ever Tell" was an elaborate hoax. The whole unsavoury case tells us a lot about the culture of lies, deceit and false accusations targeting the Catholic Church since 2002. The book became a best-seller in Ireland and Britain. Yes, incredibly, 400,000 people were conned. In reality, they are but a tiny fraction of the millions who have been duped over the last decade.

Kathy O'Beirne claims she spent years as a slave to sadistic nuns in the Magdalene laundries (institutions run by the Catholic church to house young women and unmarried mothers), how she was raped there by two priests, gave birth at the age of 13, and how she had her hand thrust into boiling fat by her alcoholic father.

It came as little surprise when family, friends, official records and respected journalist Hermann Kelly (author of "Kathy's Real Story") revealed that this deeply disturbed former psychiatric patient, who has a criminal record for dishonesty, made it all up.

The daughter she claims she bore at the age of 13 did not exist. And a priest who allegedly raped and beat her suffered from such severe arthritis he could not even shake hands. Moreover, she tried to bribe a friend (Margaret Power) to be a "witness" to that rape. According to official records and eyewitness statements, she was never even in a Magdalene laundry. Nonetheless, she threatened to have those who challenge her account "dealt with."

A planned sequel to the book was unceremoniously dumped by publisher Hodder Headline in 2009.

Of course, lurid tales of child abuse and misery sell books and newspapers. False accusations can yield significant financial gain, and seldom receive or even require corroboration.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Baba ganoush on 11 Mar. 2008
Format: Paperback
At first, upon reading this novel, I was shocked and moved at this "true" story of a young girl. Just a few weeks after reading this, however, I came across a television documentary involving O'Beirne. It turns out that many people deny that the events that she claim to have taken place ever happened, including members of her own family. In this, she offered to take a lie detector test while answering some questions about the events. She agreed, under the terms that her brother (who said that she was lying in her book) went first. Her brother passed the test, and soon after, she backed out of taking it. I was just disgusted that she conned so many people with wht is obviously a lie.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Phoenix Resurgam on 27 April 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read this book virtually in one sitting and then I promptly lent it to my sister who wasn't able to put it down either, in fact she kept phoning me up wanting to discuss it.

It is horrible to believe that this sort of thing went on only 40 odd years ago, and that some of the victims are still institutionalised. The horrific mental and physical torture that these young girls and women went through, well words fail me. I have never been a great lover of the Catholic faith, and the treatment by the nuns and priests who blatantly abused their positions or turned a blind eye have the nerve to say they are God's Children. They are the penitients which Kathy speaks about throughout her book not the women and children who were sent to these hell holes.

It must have been such a shock to the young Kathy who was told she was going for a trip to the seaside only to find out that her evil father was leaving her at an industrial school and that her mother was not allowed to contact you. What kind of a God feaering man could do that to his own child!?

Kathy's strength of character shines through the pages, her determination to try and help herself and others just goes to show that having suffered the most horrific of lifes cannot break the spirit. "What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger", and Kathy is testament to this.

Despite how evil and vindictive her father was, Kathy still nursed him through his illness in later years. I don't think I would have been as merciful. This was a man who beat her daily, left her outside all day or night in all weathers, deprived her of food and made her live in the garden shed!

By the end of this book you will have gone through a whole number of different emotions with Kathy, but most of all you will want justice for Kathy and all the other victims of this abuse. I hope that one day they will get it and Kathy can finally put her past to rest.
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