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on 19 March 1999
This was the first book I have ever read by Torey Hayden, and now I am looking forward to reading another. This detailed and sometimes mysterious book will have you reading all night. Guaranteed. A book about Jadie, a girl affected by ritual abuse, the 8 1/2 year old protagonist will have you on the edge of your seat with wonder. Hayden's style of writing brings you to a climax of intrigue by the end of each chapter, making it almost impossible to put the book down. I hope people will read it with an open mind and an open heart. It is a true, sometimes frightening story that will open your eyes to many things you may not think is possible.
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on 8 June 2005
This is the third Torey Hayden book I have read (the first two were One Child and it's sequel, Tiger's child, both excellent). This book, Ghost Girl, is incredibly moving and extremely shocking. It is hard to believe that this sort of abuse goes on, but it does, and here Torey tries so desperately to help this little girl, Jadie, a pupil in her class for special needs kids, who is an elective mute but begins to talk to Torey almost immediately. It soon becomes clear that something is very, very wrong but Torey can't quite put her finger on it, and tries very hard to encourage Jadie to tell all. When she eventually does confess to everything that is happening to her and her six year old sister, Amber, and even to her 18 month old baby sister Sapphire, Torey is terribly shocked and unsure what to do, as she has promised Jadie she won't tell anybody of their secret after school conversations. But matters take a dramatic turn - you'll have to read it to find out the rest! I really enjoy reading Torey's books and find them hard to put down once started, and I am about to order 2 more to take on holiday with me! Highly recommended.
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on 13 July 2005
Once again Torey Hayden has written an outstanding book about her work with children. This book is mainly about Jadie, who, at 8 is (s)electively mute, walks hunched over and expresses fears that initially seem bizarre.
At the opening of the book, Torey Hayden meets Jadie and her classmates after half term break. Within a short space of time during that first day together, Jadie broke her self imposed silence and spoke softly when asked a direct question. From that point on, Jadie's verbal progress is remarkable. A bright, expressive child, Jadie described a bizarre life outside of the classroom that certainly makes for a strong case for ritual abuse. Luckily Jadie was provided with a classroom environment in which she felt safe.
Jadie feared spiders because she believed they could hear her and "tell on her" if she divulged anything that could be construed as a breach of confidence. She explained her posture as a means of "keeping her insides from falling out;" she fears the number 6 and worries about her younger sister surviving her sixth birthday; she said adults she knew told her how at six one gains power and how people can hurt others with impunity; she describes drinking blood as "oily" and "slipping down." Ghosts and themes of death are trenchant; many of Jadie's early drawings are of ghosts and she said that she and her little sisters were ghosts at night. She also believed that a playmate who had allegedly died had become a ghost and that that child's ghost had gotten into her, Jadie.
Each fear she expressed can be traced to ritual abuse. In many cases, ritual abusers claim that spiders as well as insects spy on children and report anything the children might tell. Imbibing blood and other body fluids is often a cult activity and the number 6 has a long history of having dark magical properties attributed to it. Jadie's fear that her sister would not survive past that age appears to underscore this belief. Her strong aversion for Halloween is another good case in point as Halloween is considered a high holiday in cult circles. Jadie wanted no part of it.
Another point that leans towards ritual abuse was Jadie's sexual precocity and acting out. She described adult acts and even said how she and her sisters were so abused. Although Jadie had a good command of language from the telling, the question remains as to what really took place.
This is a very chilling book that will certainly leave indelible impressions upon the minds of all who read it. It is easy to make good cases for ritual abuse, but that is remains an open question. Jadie was a very brave and soldierly little girl who tried to protect her sisters and explain a part of her life that can at best be described as hazy and shadowy.
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on 11 June 2008
Although i loved reading the book as much as i have enjoyed all of Torey Hayden's books, I was disturbed at the end as nothing significant came out of the investigation. Surely in circumstances like this one someone must have known what was going on!! Was there a cover up? Where other children involved? Is this still happening in that town? Why were her parents not prosecuted, surely in this day and age this case can be reopened and more facts be obtained.
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on 15 August 2005
I have to say this book was very moving and painfull to read.
I could not not stop myself from crying at times as the main little girl in this book called Jadie suffers such horrific sexual abuse it is very hard to read what her and her sister go through.
What keeps you gripped is Torey Hadens love and kindness to Jadie, her concern and determination to get her out of this nightmare. Its very powerfull words.
All i can say is it when you read this it does play on your mind and you will be upset by what you read but on the other hand it shows you there are amazing people like Torey Haden out there helping children escape these kind of nightmares and there are people willing to fight to put these evil people away.
God bless you Torey Haden!!!!
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on 14 March 2006
This book is not for the faint hearted. Torey does not hold back when describing the abuse suffered by the children she has worked with. One Child made me cry, Ghost Girl made me physically sick. It's the first time I had to stop reading and come back to it a few days later.
I'm not going to descibe the book's story - just read it!!!
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on 9 August 2006
My god!!! I read this book in 2 days. Torey Hayden deserves all cudos going for working with and helping Jadie. This reads like a real life horror and what this little girl reveals could never be made up. A true patience and understanding from Hayden comes through in this book, and whilst at times I felt physically sick reading it I can only imagine how she must have felt hearing these revelations from a young child.Hayden also goes into a lot of explanations about possible outcomes at the end of this book and this makes very interesting and informative reading. It is harrowing, gut wrenching, unbelievable(in the shocked sense) and shocking. DO NOT be put off by this, this book is a truly FIRST CLASS read and leaves you realising that just as thare are bad guys there are an awful lot of good guys too. Hayden is one of these.
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on 9 October 2012
I have read a number of Torey's books - Beautiful Child, Twilight Children and this one - but this was by far the most disturbing.
I will not go into detail so as not to ruin the book, but I took this book on holiday to read and found it was not quite as light-hearted, particularly as Twilight Children!
The story of Jadie frightened me due to the highly graphic stories she told Torey, but I still enjoyed reading it as I was desperate to know what's happened to Jadie and her family.

I really enjoyed this book despite its graphic nature - I would recommend with caution, readers should not casually just pick it up, prepare yourselves a bit first.
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on 1 July 2014
I read my first Torey Hayden book (Somebdy else's kids) a few weeks ago. I thought I would try it as I have read a lot of Cathy Glass books and this seemed in a similar vein, I enjoyed it and so bought "Ghost Girl". Although the story is heart wrenchingly good the actual writing was very hard to follow as the author seemed to jump ahead quite often or switch to another subject altogether, when all I wanted was to find out what happens next, not wait another chapter!. There was a lot of unnecessary information/mood setting. In conclusion Story good - writing bad! Not sure if I will give this author another chance or not!
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on 28 July 2014
This is a very well written and gripping book. I couldn't put it down and read it at every available moment. But a word of warning, it's sometimes a nasty world out there and even in my 53 years on this planet I have just read of things that some may disturbing. I suppose you cannot write of troubled minds without knowing of such things, I'm no lightweight and not easily upset but this storey can't fail but get to you.
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