Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: Transworld Publishers (July 1, 2002)
Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.6 x 7.6 inches
Shipping Weight: 5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #1,998,759 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #31 in Books > Health, Fitness & Dieting > Children's Health > Special Needs Children #683 in Books > Biographies & Memoirs > Ethnic & National > Irish #984 in Books > Politics & Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Specific Demographics > Disabled
I know this book is not out of print because I ordered it and read it in one day. Any intelligent reader knows that the mark of a good writer is the ability to write masterful, engaging narrative, and Paddy Doyle tells the story of his young life honestly and directly. It is this straightforward essential truthfulness which will keep your attention from page 1 through the epilogue. Of particular import in this literary journey is the challenge to see that the beauty of life is not there because of or in spite of what one survives, but because the human spirit, so brilliantly demonstrated in the Irish spirit of Paddy Doyle, is a fire that cannot be damped down. It's also a fine example of what happens when the church and state relationship gets too cozy; something we Yanks take for granted won't happen. Point and click your way to owning this book, it *is* available!
This is the fascinating true story of a little boy who through no fault of his own is incarcerated in one of the appalling Irish industrial schools in existence in Ireland until 1970. He suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse and as if this were not enough, he was then taken by the nuns of the industrial school and left to spend years of his precious life in different hospitals where he appears to have been no more than a guinea pig and was left with a permanent disability. Up to this day, no-one within the system has accounted for the brain operations, his eventual disability or any reason why he was in the different hospitals.The book is very well written and although it describes the horrors inflicted on a small child, the sadistic treatment he received in the hands of the nuns, one can sense a healthy resignation which comes across every page thus making the unbearably sad story a little easier to read.I found the book an inspiration, an ode to life, for after the total deprivation of affection, protection, a simple toy even, and having had his life taken away from him and practicaly destroyed, he not only survives with sanity but he wins in a superhuman way as he tells with such dignity about the perverse system under which he and so many other children were detained.It must have been very difficult to relive the horrors whilst writing this very informative book. And for such an effort, I am indebted.
When The God Squad was first published in Ireland in 1988, the Irish public were confronted with the reality of life behind the walls of religious-run orphanages and industrial schools. However, perhaps because it was seen as just one unfortunate boy's story, there was no general sense of outrage directed at the perpetrators or at the system which allowed supposedly 'religious' men and women to ill-treat children entrusted to their care. That had to wait until another expose by the journalist Mary Raftery eight years later.But Paddy Doyle broke the silence and for that we must all be grateful. This book is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand the real Ireland of the recent past. Paddy tells his story eloquently and without self-pity. The God Squad will break your heart. Read it.
It breaks my heart when I read how society has failed and continues to fail our children. Paddy - who I have had the pleasure of meeting - took lemons and made lemonade as is clearly demonstrated in his writing. The writing style flows and make a difficult subject an easy read. His treatment at the hands of nuns is another example of how people who say that they are 'people of G-d' aren't. How could they be? On another note Paddy is a advocate for justice for children who have been abused - a loud one who gets heard by all :) Buy the book.
The God Squad is Paddy Doyle's heart-wrenching account of the cruelties he suffered at the hands of Church and State as a young boy raised in the Irish industrial school system. When he developed a mysterious medical disorder, he was forsaken to the whims of doctors with no one to protect his interests and well being.The multiple brain surgeries practiced upon Mr. Doyle when he was just 9 years of age were a travesty of justice, perversion of humanity, desecration of religion, and corruption of the practice of medical science. Mr. Doyle was a young boy at the mercy of institutionalized care, his body destroyed by a Church that abandoned him to doctors who betrayed him, all complicit in the crime. Having suffered the same movement disorder - Dystonia - from a similar age but not with equal severity and free from his medical mismanagement, I can only imagine the monumental challenges he faces daily. One's overriding impression of Mr. Doyle is not his disability but his impassioned advocacy on behalf of the disabled and those that care for them and a gentle soul that bears no ill will towards his own abusers - Paddy Doyle has better things to do with his time. I can only urge you to read The God Squad's beatifully chronicled narrative as Paddy Doyle leads your heart into another world for an unforgettable experience of unwarranted circumstance, raging injustice and childhood resilience that leaves you wondering at the utter senselessness of a system that allows the abuse and abandonment of innocent children.
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