Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Tell the Publisher!
Id like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

One Child [Mass Market Paperback]

Torey Hayden
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (147 customer reviews)

Available from these sellers.


Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover --  
Paperback 5.59  
Mass Market Paperback, May 1981 --  
Audio, CD, Abridged, Audiobook, CD --  
Audio Download, Abridged 9.20 or Free with Audible.co.uk 30-day free trial

Book Description

May 1981

This beautiful and deeply moving tale recounts educational psychologist Torey Hayden's battle to unlock the emotions of a troubled and sexually abused child who, with the help of Hayden, was finally able to overcome her dark past and realise her full potential.

Six-year-old Sheila was abandoned by her mother on a highway when she was four. A survivor of horrific abuse, she never spoke, never cried, and was placed in a class for severely retarded children after committing an atrocious act of violence against another child. Everyone thought Sheila was beyond salvation – except her teacher, Torey Hayden. With patience, skill, and abiding love, she fought long and hard to release a haunted little girl from her secret nightmare – and nurture the spark of genius she recognised trapped within Sheila's silence. This is the remarkable story of their journey together – an odyssey of hope, courage, and inspiring devotion that opened the heart and mind of one lost child to a new world of discovery and joy.

--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 318 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Books:Harper Collins (New York); 1st.Ed.1981. edition (May 1981)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380542625
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380542628
  • Product Dimensions: 2.3 x 10.5 x 16.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (147 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,195,470 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Torey Hayden is an educational psychologist and a special education teacher who, since 1979, has chronicled her struggles in the classroom in a succession of bestselling books. She currently lives and writes in North Wales.

Product Description


‘Torey Hayden deserves the kind of respect I can’t give many people. She isn’t valuable, she’s incredible. The world needs more like Torey Hayden.’ – Boston Globe

‘It has been a long time since you have read a book with the sheer emotional impact of One Child.’ – New York Times

‘Page after page proves again the power of love and the resiliency of life.’ – Los Angeles Times

--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

About the Author

Born in Montana, USA, Torey Hayden has spent most of her adult life working with children in distress. Now living in Great Britain, she divides her time between writing and volunteer work with several British charities. Torey is author of numerous internationally best-selling books about her experiences as a special education teacher and therapist. She has also written two novels and two children's books.

Find her at www.torey-hayden.com

--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
I should have known. Read the first page
Explore More
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

Sell a Digital Version of This Book in the Kindle Store

If you are a publisher or author and hold the digital rights to a book, you can sell a digital version of it in our Kindle Store. Learn more

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BEST book I have ever read!!! 4 Feb 1999
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
What more can I say? I read this book for the first time several years ago, and I have re-read it over and over. I have a great respect and admiration for Torey Hayden. Her writing inspired me to pursue a career in education and it has changed the way I relate to people, especially children. I heard that One Child is required reading for some college education courses, and it should be! It is great for teachers, parents, or ANYONE! It kept my interest even though I don't normally read very much. If you think you might be interested in this book, please read it-you won't be sorry! Be sure to have a box of tissues handy. :)
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Heartaching touching book 2 Dec 1998
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This story is about a teacher and one child. It's heartaching and touching from the moment Sheila walks into that classroom. It almost wanted me to become a teacher, because if you could save just one child it would be worth all the troubles you might have. Mrs. Hayden's way of describing the story and girl is very vividly and you can see Shelia standing right there in front of you. I recommend this book for everyone who is a bit interested in children, especially the need to care about kids. The way it makes you feel when Torey reach into Sheila...it gives you a very joyful moment and you wished there were more persons like her and less child abusers. This book gives you all the emotions, anger, despair, hope, love, makes you smile, makes you want to do something. So please read it!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars review on one child 28 Dec 2004
never having read a book by torey hayden i found her book one child to be the most amazing story of courage from the little girl sheila who the story is about to torey herself who is a teacher who went futher then most would to reach her. i couldnt put this book down and went though many emotions reading this from pride to how sheila came along to sadness from all the suffering she went thorough a real rollercoaster of emotions leaving me in tears i will let you read the book to see if they are tears of sadness or tears of joy, i cant wait to read her other books
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Heart Wrenching Master-piece 11 Feb 2006
By A Customer
I first read One Child in 2000 and found the story so moving I have read it once a year since. The book brings to many feelings for me to convey to you but I will bullet point the general gist:
1.A beautiful little girl called Shelia commits a crime against another child at the age of 7.
2.Torey haydon, a teacher for children with profound emotional problems has Shelia join the class while a placement opens in the local hospital for mentally Ill people.
3.Shelia is a disruptive, angry mute and makes teaching difficult for Torey.
4.Torey slowly unravels Shelia’s past and discovers a world of abuse, torture, dysfunction and brings Shelia to face her situation.
Torey brings Shelia to life and everyone that reads it will be feeling the same. Shelia is a girl everyone wants to know and help. Although Shelia has experienced things we could not imagine, she is still strong and carries such charm and innocence. I no it sounds cheesy but One Child has made me think different about life. One Child is the only book i have ever read in my life apart from the squeal, Tiger's child where you can read what happened next to Shelia as a teenager. One Child will captivate you and leave you feeling happy but also sad and you will want more. Please read this book, boy girl, child or adult. It seems relevant for everyone and I can 100% guarantee you will not retreat it. Anyone trying to write a review on this book will do no justice, the story line is simple and so easy to follow but it’s the feeling you have reading every line. It’s packed with emotion and you will not be able to put it down. Simply Beautiful!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a difficult book to read 20 Dec 2004
if you have children, this will be a hard book to read but one which sould be read.
a story of trust. love and hope.
torey hayden recounts her life in the classroom of 'difficult' children and how she has helped stabalise them into teaching them and dealing with them and them dealing with everyday life.
this is a story about one child, sheila, aboandoned, unloved, abused and how she helped sheila.
there are lots of books out there about this subject. one story they all give is hope.
read this book and weep. weep for the lost childhood but, above all, weep for the hope
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A hopeless case... 5 April 2005
Torey Hayden recounts the simple, riveting tale a classroom of "crazies" - troubled and mentally disturbed children - centering around her relationship with one girl. Six-year-old Sheila has seen and done horrors unimaginable to most adults; destined to spend her life in a hospital for lighting a three-year-old boy on fire, Hayden imagines the girl to be a hopeless case.
The charm of this books is not in hidden beneath jumbled metaphors and complicated text; it flows easily from page to mind to heart. The real charm of this books lies in the innocence of not only the tortured Sheila, but also that of Hayden, who we also are allowed to watch and feel for through the book, as she is our lense into the world that these children face. It's not done up with drama or long-winded, poetic meanderings of the writer's mind. It is instead based in the humble day to day activites sporatically disrupted by the natural drama that Sheila brings along. Every step of Sheila and Hayden's journey together, the reader is brought closer to their hearts, touched and angered by every event that occurs.
Hayden fights through her struggle to come out in the end more the wiser, as so does the reader. Wiser, less innocent, and so increadibly changed by the tremendous story of one little girl and the teacher who did nothing less and nothing more than simply love her.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Haven't read the book yet but….
….. I bought this as a second hand book at a fraction of the new price including posting, it's like a brand new book! Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jasperenie
5.0 out of 5 stars enjoyed reading this book
I enjoyed this book was easy reading, just wanted to find out what happened next. it wasn't really depressing which can be with as the very nature of these books. Read more
Published 10 months ago by sharon goldsworthy
1.0 out of 5 stars Poorly written but with serious content.
I must disagree with the rave reviews. There is serious content described but I find the self promoting narrative style unacceptable and very tedious to read. Read more
Published 11 months ago by S. Banks
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow Book
I have a special needs boy and at times the problems / 'sorting' things out seem insurmountable. You make mistakes and have to be able to look at what you are doing and why, to... Read more
Published 15 months ago by H. Joberns
3.0 out of 5 stars Not so great
While the book has sterling reviews, I expected a good read but I found the story not quite as inspiring as promised. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Onlineshopper456
4.0 out of 5 stars one child
A well written book, the author seems honest and is detailed about the process of teaching and helping to "unravel" troubled children who have been abused.
Published 17 months ago by Jan
5.0 out of 5 stars Heartbreaking story!
Torey Hayden is a great story teller and I couldn't put this book down, I was captured from page 1.
Published 17 months ago by Mikaela Hansen
5.0 out of 5 stars Very moving
Compulsive reading once started. I am glad that I bought the sequel at the same time as i needed to know what happened to the child afterwards.
Published 19 months ago by Happy123
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read
About 8 years ago, while in foster care, I happened to stumble upon a brief interview with Torey Hayden while she was on a promotional book tour and she mentioned this book. Read more
Published 21 months ago by emma louise
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
Very emotional book. Loved every minute could not put this down. Definate must read. Torey hayden really draws you into the storey.
Published on 28 Jun 2012 by Carlycubitt
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category