The God Squad
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The God Squad

3.66 (185 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The past they tried to hide. His mother died from cancer in 1955. His father committed suicide shortly thereafter. Paddy Doyle was sentenced in an Irish district court to be detained in an industrial school for eleven years. He was four years old... Paddy Doyle's prize-winning bestseller, The God Squad, is both a moving and terrifying testament of the institutionalised Ireland of less than fifty years ago, as seen through the bewildered eyes of a child. During his detention, Paddy was viciously assaulted and sexually abused by his religious custodians, and within three years his experiences began to result in physical manifestations of trauma. He was taken one night to hospital and left there, never to see his custodians again. So began his long round of hospitals, mainly in the company of old and dying men, while doctors tried to diagnose his condition. This period of his life, during which he was a constant witness to death, culminated in brain surgery at the age of ten - by which time he had become permanently disabled. The God Squad is the remarkable true story of a survivor, told with an extraordinary lack of bitterness for one so shockingly and shamefully treated. In Paddy Doyle's own words: 'It is about a society's abdication of responsibility to a child. The fact that I was that child, and that the book is about my life, is largely irrelevant. The probability is that there were, and still are, thousands of 'me's.'show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 126 x 194 x 18mm | 140.62g
  • Transworld Publishers Ltd
  • Corgi Books
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0552150274
  • 9780552150279
  • 240,307

About Paddy Doyle

Paddy Doyle was born in Wexford in 1951 and now lives in Dublin. He is married with three grown up sons. He is recognised as a leading disability activist in Ireland and has been a member of the government-appointed Commission of the Status of People with Disabilities. A frequent contributor to television, radio and the print media on matters as diverse as the role of the church in caring for children to the legalisation of marijuana for medical use, he is currently Chief Executive of the National Representative Council - a body established to ensure that the rights of people with disabilities are upheld. He has also travelled extensively throughout Europe and the United States, speaking at conferences about disability and child sexual abuse. Paddy Doyle received the Christy Brown Award for Literature, in1984, for a television play entitled Why do I Bother. Shortly after it was first published, The God Squad became a bestselling book in both Ireland and the United Kingdom. It also won the Sunday Tribune Arts Award for Literature. In 1993 Paddy Doyle was awarded a Person of the Year Award for An Outstanding Contribution to Irish Society by the Rehab Group.show more

Back cover copy

Paddy Doyle's mother died from cancer in 1955. His father committed suicide shortly afterwards. Paddy was sentenced in an Irish district court to be detained in an industrial school for eleven years. He was four years old. This award-winning bestseller is a moving and terrifying testament of the institutionalised Ireland of only thirty-five years ago, seen through the bewildered eyes of a child. During his detention, Paddy was viciously assaulted and sexually abused by the nuns charged to care for him, and within three years his experiences began to result in physical manifestations of trauma. He was taken one night to hospital and left there, never to see his custodians again. This period of his life, during which he was a constant witness to death, culminated in brain surgery at the age of ten - by which time he had become permanently disabled. This is the remarkable true story of a survivor, told with an extraordinary lack of bitterness. In Paddy Doyle's own words: 'It is about a society's abdication of responsibility to a child. The fact that I was that child, and that the book is about my life, is largely irrelevant. The probability is that there were, and still are, thousands of "me"s.'show more

Rating details

185 ratings
3.66 out of 5 stars
5 22% (40)
4 38% (71)
3 27% (50)
2 11% (20)
1 2% (4)

Our customer reviews

"Found my cop of this book in my local charity shop, and as i read the first few pages i was hooked, read more on the bus coming home, simply could not put it down, you can feel addys presence sadness and pain, the lack of love and affection throughout the entire book from the GOD SQUAD, shines through, what courage and strength, this little lad had, will be an insperation to us all. THE SISTERS OF MURCEY showed not the slightest bit of humanity love or affection towards these little young children, infact were abusers and good at hiding it... no one knows what goes on behind closed doors comes to my mind, DONT WANT TO GIVE THE STORY AWAY. MY BEST READ THIS YEAR"show more
by a Book Depository customer
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