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Old Before My Time: Hayley Okines' Life with Progeria
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Old Before My Time: Hayley Okines' Life with Progeria

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  1,513 ratings  ·  156 reviews
The extraordinary life of Britain's 100-year-old teenager Hayley Okines is like no other 13-year-old schoolgirl. Born with the rare genetic condition progeria, she ages eight times faster than the average person. In medical terms her body is like that of a 100-year-old woman. Yet she faces her condition with immense courage and a refreshing lack of self-pity. In Old Before ...more
Paperback, 201 pages
Published March 1st 2012 by Accent Press (UK) (first published October 27th 2011)
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Average rating 4.01  · 
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Giddy Girlie
Jun 10, 2013 rated it liked it
It speaks volumes about this family that my initial reaction was that Hayley's story is a bit... boring. But that's actually a good thing. If a young girl can live a life battling an illness (and its attendant issues; HBP, osteoporosis, etc.) and her life isn't 100% medical drama all the time THAT'S FANTASTIC.

Hayley and her mother alternate writing chapters and while I liked the change in points of view, a lot of the information was redundant. I think this might have worked better as an intervie
John Sanabria
Mar 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you so much for sharing your story with the rest of the world.
This book brought many emotions to me, sometimes made me laugh, sometimes my eyes got wet but in general it was a cute and nice experience.
Hayley, you are not only special because you got progeria, other children have the disease too but you have made the difference in the life of many people who have watched specials about you and by other people that have the bless of reading your book. You have touched our hearts.

I follow you
Mar 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What an angel... God bless her soul in heaven and her entire family.. I was so inspired by her courage, sense of humor and overall positive attitude.
Feb 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very well written, humbling book. Hayley is a wonderfully positive thinking teenager with a deadly disease. But she refuses to concentrate on that fact that she is dying, and instead LIVES every minute with dreams of the future, humor and love! One of the saddest stories I ever read, and yet it leaves me smiling through my tears... And hoping... That's what Hayley teaches me... Hope is the Begin of every change to the better! ...more
Jill Robbertze
Jan 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Hayley Okines' story is a touching and heart-warming memoir about the life of a girl born with Progeria, a rare condition causing premature aging. This account is written from both her own perspective and that of her Mother. I rarely award 5 stars and this time it is mostly for the content and not the writing skills. A memorable little gem of a book about an extraordinary, brave little girl who's bubbly, happy and kind disposition shines through all the way. ...more
Apr 26, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quick read; read it in one day. Very interesting. The writing wasn't the greatest; I noticed several typos and some sentences were just very odd. I also had trouble understanding some of the British terms used. MOT? But I enjoyed reading Hayley's story and am glad she is doing well. ...more
Nicola Clough
Aug 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Very well written one amazing teenager who has been through so much yet smiles through it all. Thank you for sharing your story so well.
Jul 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed reading this book. I believe I saw Hayley on TV sometime in the last several years, so I knew a little bit about her and Progeria, but not very much. This book is written very well, as Hayley and her mother each have their own chapters. You can see how Hayley had such a sweet and positive outlook on life and her disease, her innocence also shines through. It is heart-wrenching to hear her mother's side, about living not knowing what was happening to Hayley, to all the family wen ...more
Kellen Foord
May 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Good read. Makes you laugh and cry and realise the value of life. From one little girl who stayed positive until the very end.
Jun 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
When Kerry Okines became pregnant in 1997, she and her husband, Mark, looked forward to the typical experiences of raising a child. Within a few months of their new daughter, Hayley’s, birth, however, they realized that she was not developing normally. She was not gaining weight, only an ounce or two between health visitor appointments. Kerry noticed small lumps on Hayley’s abdomen which the doctor dismissed as “nothing to worry about.” By the time Hayley was six months old, the Okines were con ...more
Perhaps you’ve heard of the amazing Hayley Okines, or maybe you’ve seen her on TV. Hayley was born with an incredibly rare condition called Progeria, which causes her to age eight times faster than the average person. From the time she was a baby, she looked like an elderly person, and had the physical symptoms to accompany that, including things like arthritis. She is also very small and frail. Because these children have the bodies of very old people, they rarely make it into their teenage yea ...more
Oriyah Nitkin
Aug 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
After finishing this book I went online to see what the latest news on Haley is. Sadly, she passed away April of this year. With this information, I'm torn between writing an actual review and just leaving well enough alone. Seeing as her mother isn't on goodreads, I feel compelled to give my honest opinion. And Haley's mother or anyone else with a real-life connection to Haley or her family, if you ever come across this review, STOP READING NOW.

It's really hard to write an honest review of a bo
Lynda Kelly
Dec 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
This made for some sad reading knowing young Hayley lost her battle earlier this year. Spookily, it would've been her eighteenth birthday the day before I started reading which was heartbreaking as she so wanted to beat her progeria and reach that milestone. She certainly did better than many of the poor kids afflicted with this awful disease and even though she lost her own personal battle she ensured, along with her parents, that maybe other kids would benefit from the medical trials she parti ...more
Apr 09, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2012
I really wanted to like this book more than I did. I have followed Hayley and her story for several years now, and I guess I was hoping to learn more about the trials that she is on. It was interesting to hear both Hayley's point of view as well as her mother's. Her mother, however...I just don't know. I didn't get a good vibe about her. She is always complaining about the cards she's dealt, how she and her husband frequently fight, the lack of money that they have, yet they go on theses exotic ...more
Apr 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to receive this book through the First Reads program here at Goodreads. Like many people I didn't know much about Progeria. I had heard of it, of course, but I didn't know any details. Old Before My Time: Hayley Okines' Life with Progeria delves into subject matter that has rarely been touched, offering readers two views of what it's like to have your life touched by the rare disease: Hayley's mother Kerry, and Hayley herself. What touched me the most was Hayley's determinatio ...more
Dec 26, 2012 rated it liked it
I saw Haleys story on a documentary on TV recently, and when I saw her book was available, I thought it would be a good little read. She is very sweet, and the book is half written by her, and half by her mum about her life living with progeria.

You have to admire the girl, who even though small and with many health issues still attended normal primary and high school when she could. Because of her television programmes, so many people throughout the world have learned about this devastating illn
i'm going to start book reviews again. i stopped cause i was so busy. but i do need to write reviews again...even if it's not for every book.

i loved this book. i had seen documentaries on Hayley before, but reading her story was a wonderful thing too. i love memoirs and i speed through this one. Hayley had Progeria where she ages 8 times faster making her really 100 at only the age of 13. She is strong with all the tests she goes through, she doesn't let anything get in her way. even if you're
Beckie Treble
Mar 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved seeing this from both Hayley's and Kerry's Points of View. I've been following Hayley's story on the on channel 5. Hayley really is an inspiration to us all. I hope that soon there will be a cure for Progria, along with everything else. Only Hayley could get away with asking Price Charles for his autograph. I told my mum this morning, and smiled. The only reaction I've found when someone mentions Hayley's name. Truly amazing.

╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥
I've watched a few of the documentaries that include Hayley and definitely think her story is better absorbed that way. This book was written mostly by her mother and is quite choppy in all aspects. It doesn't go in chronological order and it just doesn't seem to flow very well.

Her story is a very good one - just not so much when put in book form.
Dec 17, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf, 2013
This was a disappointment that I eventually decided not to finish. I had hoped to read a story about a brave young girl who lives with a horrible disease, but instead I found the majority of the beginning focuses on the Mom. While I realize, obviously, there is no story without Mom's input, I didn't pick up the book to read about Mom, but Hayley. ...more
Jun 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Heartbreaking at times, yet very inspiring.
Heather Lochridge
Brave Girl

I had never heard of this disease before reading this book. It's amazing how strong Hayley and her family are. Wonderful book.
Connie N.
Oct 05, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is about Hayley Okines, a British girl who was born with progeria, the disease that causes children to age eight years for every one for non-progeria people. It was certainly interesting to learn more about the disease, just as her parents did when there was little information available. And, with the advent of the internet and social media, awareness has increased throughout the world about this horrible disease. But at the same time, I found the book to be disappointing because it al ...more
Susan Montelius
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
I remember the first time I saw and/or heard anything about Progeria - I had been watching a talk show and for all I know the person on that show could have been Hayley...I remember it had a profound effect on me - I was heartbroken then (as I am now) that children had to endure something such as this. In reading this book I was so encouraged to think that Hayley might actually outlive the limits doctor's stated. Toward the end of this book I was hopeful to think that others (along with Hayley) ...more
This book revolves around Hayley Okines, who was diagnosed with progeria, which makes these children look like they are old men and women. I got this book back in January 2013. so shame on me that it took me over 7 years to get to this one.One would think this might be sad and depressing, but instead it is rather interesting, who gets involved in drug trials for progeria to hopefully extend her lige. Children who suffer from progeria usually have a life expectancy of 13. I won't tell you how lon ...more
Sarah Ismail
Sep 26, 2017 rated it liked it
As someone disabled since birth, I loved and fully identified with Hayley's chapters. Kerry's were longer and too medically/scientifically detailed for my liking. I would have liked to know more about her feelings about having a disabled child- she does share these but in less detail than she shares her medical knowledge of progeria. ...more
Sarah Heales
Oct 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lovely but sad

Fantastic book which gives very good insight into this darling angels world. Highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for a book that makes you laugh, cry and warms your heart
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
book review

I loved this book very factual and loved the fact t showed Hayleys point of view and her mum's point of view on Hayleys battle with progeria
layell mebarki
Mar 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
this book makes you realize how much you take for granted living a healthy life and gives you a bigger picture of drug trials and how people learn to enjoy their lives despite their illness.
Charlie Field
Jun 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is the third time I’ve read this book and I love it Hayley is a true hero
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