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Rock Me Gently: A True Story of a Convent Childhood Paperback – October 1, 2006

4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0747587149 ISBN-10: 0747587140

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Judith Kelly runs a support group for those who were abused by priests and nuns within the Catholic Church.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury UK (October 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747587140
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747587149
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,617,880 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A. Gatehouse on August 16, 2007
Format: Paperback
Firstly, "Rock Me Gently" is a real page turner. I read it a few months ago and I still can't get it out of my head. It's probably the most truly captivating and sensitive memoir I can ever remember reading. Kelly's story is beautifully written and told with style, thoughtfulness and an extraordinary sense of humour considering the hardships she had to endure throughout her life.

Although Kelly has earned the right to complain, at no point does she play the victim. In fact, her tolerant stance towards the perpetrators of the abuse against her is at first startling, since many of the circumstances she describes are extremely harrowing to read and unquestioningly neglectful. Throughout the book I kept looking for bitterness or lingering shame, but her memoir is about thriving and letting go of negative feelings. Judith Kelly's story is testament to survival regardless of what type of spoon you're born with in your mouth.

For those reviewers here who have expressed doubts about the authenticity of Kelly's story, I can tell you that at least the convent part rings true as I have a friend who attended the same Nazareth House in Bexhill as the author and she vividly remembers both Kelly and the convent events described in her story. To this day, my friend still suffers the psychological repercussions of her abusive childhood.

Don't miss this one! It's worthy of your time and I highly recommend this book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By M. J. Rossiter on August 1, 2006
Format: Hardcover
A very sad book that we should all read.

It gives a different insight into the way nuns look after children, and would make a truly wonderful film. Mr. Speilberg please take note!
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By A. Gates on December 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful book. A really compelling read, and a truly heartbreaking read. It's not often that a book can keep me turning the pages, reading it pretty much from cover to cover, but this one did. Highly recommended.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Hello on July 29, 2007
Format: Paperback
Other reviewers have mentioned Antonia White, Graham Greene, Hilary Mantel and Charlotte Bronte as authors that Kelly plagiarised in the writing of this book. To this list can be added Margaret Atwood (sentences lifted verbatim from 'Cat's Eye'), scenes in the schoolroom paraphrased from Roald Dahl's 'Boy', and an entire scene (child beaten for saying Jesus was a Jew) from Michelle Magorian's 'Goodnight Mister Tom'. And those are just the ones we've spotted.

If readers could believe this was a true story, it would indeed be harrowing. But with the best will in the world, if an author is unquestionably lifting entire scenes from other works, her credibility must be in doubt: surely if the scenes happened in those books, the logical inference is that they didn't happen in real life? In which case, this book has no standing as a memoir, and to claim it as a factual account rather than, at best, a fictionalised reworking, is simply dishonest. I'm concerned to note that Judith Kelly is identified as someone who speaks for, and counsels, people who were abused by priests and nuns. Someone who cannot be trusted should not have a position of authority regarding vulnerable people, and there are clear and pressing reasons to doubt whether Judith Kelly can be trusted.
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