The Saddest Girl in the World

Paperback | October 1, 2009

byCathy Glass

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The Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling author of Damaged tells the true story of Donna, who came into foster care aged ten, having been abused, victimised and rejected by her family.Donna had been in foster care with her two young brothers for three weeks when she is abruptly moved to Cathy's. When Donna arrives she is silent, withdrawn and walks with her shoulders hunched forward and her head down. Donna is clearly a very haunted child and refuses to interact with Cathy's children Adrian and Paula.After patience and encouragement from Cathy, Donna slowly starts to talk and tells Cathy that she blames herself for her and her brothers being placed in care. The social services were aware that Donna and her brothers had been neglected by their alcoholic mother, but no one realised the extent of the abuse they were forced to suffer. The truth of the physical torment she was put through slowly emerges, and as Donna grows to trust Cathy she tells her how her mother used to make her wash herself with wire wool so that she could get rid of her skin colour as her mother was so ashamed that Donna was mixed race.The psychological wounds caused by the bullying she received also start to resurface when Donna starts reenacting the ways she was treated at home by hitting and bullying Paula, so much so that Cathy can't let Donna out of her sight.As the pressure begins to mount on Cathy to help this child, things start to get worse and Donna begins behaving in erratic ways, trashing her bedroom and being regularly abusive towards Cathy's children. Cathy begins to wonder if she can find a way to help this child or if Donna's scars run too deep.

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From the Publisher

The Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling author of Damaged tells the true story of Donna, who came into foster care aged ten, having been abused, victimised and rejected by her family.Donna had been in foster care with her two young brothers for three weeks when she is abruptly moved to Cathy's. When Donna arrives she is silent,...

Cathy has been a foster carer for over 20 years, during which time she has looked after more than 70 children, of all ages and backgrounds. Cathy runs training courses on fostering for her local Social Services, and helps draft new fostering procedures and guidelines. She has three teenage children of her own; one of whom was adopted a...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:336 pagesPublished:October 1, 2009Publisher:HARPERCOLLINS PUBLISHERSLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0007281048

ISBN - 13:9780007281046

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Customer Reviews of The Saddest Girl in the World

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from This is yet another fantastic book from award winning author Cathy Glass. It was a book that once I picked up just couldn't put down.
Date published: 2014-01-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The saddest girl in the world Great book! I love learning from cathies examples
Date published: 2013-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The saddest girl in the world Really enjoyed this book
Date published: 2013-05-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent! This is the true story of Donna, a ten-year-old girl who was terribly abused and neglected by her mother and abused by her two younger brothers’. Upon Donna’s foster care placement at Cathy’s, Donna is sullen, sad and non-talkative. Over the next fourteen-months Cathy and her own children, Paula six and Adrian 10, try to make Donna feel welcome and help her to adjust to living in a ‘normal’ family household. However, it isn’t always easy when one evening Cathy finds Donna in the bathroom scrubbing her hands with a bristled hand brush to the point her hands are red and raw. Questioning Donna as to why she was doing this, Donna replied: “Mum says I have to wash all the dirt off, but it won’t come off. I keep trying’’. It takes Cathy a moment to realize just what Donna is talking about and then it hits her like a ton of bricks. Donna is of dual heritage and her skin is a bit dark. Her mother, Rita, is white and her father is black and she had been forcing Donna to scrub her skin so she could be white like her! Instead of celebrating and encouraging Donna’s heritage, Rita had taught Donna to be ashamed of who she was. Bad enough that she suffered beatings with straightened coat hangers and skipping ropes with wooden handles and other horrible atrocities. Cathy however, is determined to help Donna and eventually brings her to the point that she can accept herself but it isn’t an easy road. How sad that so many children in our society have to suffer at the hands of parents such as Donna’s. This is was an excellent book.
Date published: 2010-07-12