Item description for Hard Candy by Charles Carroll...
Charles Carroll and his brother, Bobby, had the misfortune of being hard-to-place foster children and New Jersey in the 1950s. So the "powers that be" simply reclassified them from "orphan" to "retarded" and exiled them to a state-mental institution. There they remained for nearly ten years, deprived of their civil liberties, devoid of their right to an education, and denied any semblance of a humane existence.
Beneath the sanitized facade of the institution's administrative offices and visiting rooms were cramped dormitories and dank basement hellholes. Lazy and inept personnel foisted off supervision of these children to ruthless monitors-children themselves-who maintained order through methods so sadistic and horrific that "child abuse" seems a chillingly inadequate label.
Charles was a victim of an uncaring, ignorant, and underfunded system-one that was kept just out of the view of polite society. But the differentiating aspect of Charles's incarceration in this "nuthouse" is the ironic, cosmic hook in this story: he was not nuts. He was, in fact, a sensitive and perceptive child with a normal IQ. Moreover, Charles was consciously and painfully aware of every moment of his own abuse as well as the torment of his mentally defective fellow patients. Enduring their collective plight and clinging to his sanity, as one would a tiny glimmer of hope, he vowed to one day write this remarkable story of survival-not for his sake, but for the sake of society's outcasts and those too helpless to help themselves, then and now.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.9" Width: 5.8" Height: 1.2" Weight: 1.35 lbs.
Release Date Oct 30, 2005
Publisher Sourcebooks, Inc.
ISBN 1932783342 ISBN13 9781932783346
Availability 0 units.
More About Charles Carroll
MEDIA EVENTS & AWARDS:
Mr. Carroll’s has appeared on Live With Regis & Cathy in New York City, The Dr. Firpo Carr Show in Los Angles, interviewed on numerous NPR and PBS radio and television shows, was featured in People magazine (5 pages), and featured in many newspapers and magazines across the county. He has been a keynote speaker on the national, state and local levels speaking for victims without voice, and his book won the Hollywood Book Festival Awards and the Midwest Independent Publishers Awards (MIPA), receiving Honorable Mention for both.
Mr. Carroll’s book made #1 on the Canadian Amazon bestseller list for the genre, Family/Childhood. In the U.S. on February 1, 2008, the book took #3 on the Amazon bestseller list for the genre, Memoir/Biography. On October 20, 2008, the book made #2 on the Amazon bestseller list for the genre, Dysfunctional Relationships, and on October 23, 2009, HARD CANDY made the Amazon bestseller list for the genre, Child Abuse—and continues to land on these genre bestseller lists.
Are you an advocate for victims belonging to a group seeking a keynote speaker? Mr. Carroll is an award-winning author—-and his book is a genre bestseller. He has spoken on the national, state and local levels, has lectured at colleges, rape centers, child abuse action committees and mental health organizations, advocating a voice for institutionalized victims still being gagged by state bureaucracies who continue to run their operations short of the Stone Age of insanity. Join the author in a memorable one-hour presentation that includes author interviews on NPR, PBS and ABC television, a PowerPoint presentation, readings from the book, and why he wrote it—with a surprise ending. You won’t forget this one. Email the author or contact the publisher: (800) 432-7444
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Reviews - What do customers think about Hard Candy?
Fantastic, Cover to Cover. Aug 23, 2008
Hard Candy is an incredible novel that invades your thoughts and emotions as you read it, and long after you complete it. Mr. Carroll refuses to "sugar coat" any of his disturbing and heart-wrenching experiences in an attempt to enlighten the reader of the horrors that still exist in state mental institutions and foster systems alike. Simply reading this book will immediately encourage the reader to join the author in his quest to enlighten those who are uninformed of these tragedies. I personally was able to complete this novel from cover to cover in less than 48 hours as each page takes the reader deeper into Mr. Carroll's amazing story. If one should decide to purchase this book, they will find themselves honored that the author was willing to share his experiences to bring these problems to light. Truly a "must read!"
COURAGEOUS & ENCOURAGING--Carroll establishes a cornerstone for why youth and instutional reforms need more protection and care Jun 27, 2008
Carroll's book is hard to put down once you start reading it. I was shocked at how easily institutional workers could abuse and neglect patients without adequate care and supervision. This book is truly a must read for all teachers or anyone involved with youth care. Hard Candy helps one to actualize that physical and sexual abuses inflicted upon children is something which has happened and still is happening in staggering numbers in our country; however, it does not seem to be a topic which one is comfortable to talk about. Carroll makes light of the history of institutional abuse and neglect towards children by discussing the traumas which he and his brother experienced. Carroll's message is to encourage readers to help prevent these harms from occurring again. Hard Candy is well documented and Carroll has done excellent research in tracing how institutions for youths have taken advantage of and abused their patients, in particular youth, because they receive no support nor are taken seriously in their accusations. Carroll makes the reader wonder how thousands of children have been abused (like he was) and were unable to ever speak out or represent themselves or other victims. Carroll has great courage for speaking about the childhood traumas of himself and his brother Bobby. No child should ever have to go through the abuses and fear which these boys suffered. The readers and youth developers of today should really take light of Carroll's book. Hard Candy substantiates that physical, sexual, and mental abuses have take place on a wide-scale towards the youth of yesterday and TODAY. Carroll's book is provoking in that the conscientious reader cannot help but call into question the state and national standards for supervising institutions for youths. Certainly changes and closer supervision of any and all institutions need to be maintained more thoroughly. I think Carroll's book says that the time is to make changes is NOW. If more standards, investigations and outlets for youth to talk confidentially are not established then these horrors will keep occurring at drastically high levels. It is shameful that in a country as great as ours that these abuses and neglects have been able to take place at the levels they have. Carroll provides an understanding of these abuses and perpetrators of these abuses have been able to get away with their assaults. Therefore, as people concerned with our nation's youth, we need to realize that immediate changes in institutional and youth care are safe-guarded immediately. Furthermore,we need to reflect upon Carroll's book to helps us realize these facts do indeed exist and that we are challenged as adults and caring people to protect our youth today. Hard Candy is certainly a cornerstone for arguing that youth care and institutional care certainly need reform and need to be maintained with higher levels of professionalism, protection, and human decency which they properly deserve. Hard Candy will surely be reflected upon in the near future as a stirring for insitituional reform movements to take place.
Hard Candy, A Truly Amazing Story. Feb 2, 2008
When I first opened the book Hard Candy, little did I realize it would first be one of the better books I have read in a long time, yet with out a doubt the saddest I have ever read. But in this sadness is revealed the cruel, harsh tactics used by institutional staff to "control" the "patients." Mr. Carroll has dedicated his life to sharing his story of pain, anguish, dispair, and brutality. His first offering "Hard Candy: Nobody Ever Flies Over the Cuckoos Nest" goes into extreme depth of his life as a youth- being tossed around like a ragdoll from one foster family to another and from one institution to another. The stories of abuse from both staff and other "patients" is at times unbearable, yet one cannot seem to put the book down. From the dark cellar of Birch Cottage to a day trip to New York, you are right along side Mr. Carroll through the scraps of his childhood. This is a book that should be on everybodys bookshelf, and close attention should be payed to the harsh techniques that are still being used in institutions today. This book has been extremly influential upon me, helping me decide to become a social worker hopefully to one day work in such an institution. This book must be read. Period.
Truthful, Revealing & Powerful Nov 12, 2007
Sometimes the truth isn't so pretty. It was hard for me to read about such horrible blunt truths of the injustices... that occurred for young Charles and his brother Bobby. It was just plain shocking and very sad. Maybe that's what we need to hear and see... to make changes occur within our medical systems and laws. We need people like Charles to speakout for themselves and others. It's a wonderful book by this author & advocate of our civil rights. GREAT JOB!!!
Hard Candy is ..... Oct 1, 2007
hard, not at all sweet and an altogether riveting read. Vivid, difficult to take at times but ultimately an inspirational tale of the resiliency of the human spirit against all odds, and a painful yet important reminder of how we are all complicit in abuse when we do not choose to take action