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Living with Evil

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  282 Ratings  ·  32 Reviews
Cynthia Owen grew up in Ireland, went to the local convent school, said her prayers and took her first communion with all the other girls in her class. But behind the facade of respectability lurked a hideous reality. Cynthia was just eight years old when she was sexually abused by her father amongst others. Shortly before her eleventh birthday she was made pregnant and, m ...more
Hardcover, 312 pages
Published January 1st 2010 by Hachette Books Ireland (first published October 29th 2009)
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Rating details
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Feb 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: I think everyone should read this book. Might change your life!
Recommended to Jeannie by: me, myself and I
Shelves: i-own
This was a hard hitting, gut-wrenching read for me.

There are so many of this type of book out there, and I've noticed they usually come out of the U.K. What in the hell is wrong with the child protective services in that country? That is probably a story that someone should write about, seriously!

This book is exceptional in my opinion, and different from others of this genre I have read, her writing style was just so easy to follow and very understandable. She actually made me feel her pain,
Feb 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This one was bit tough to read. It was so descriptive. I swear I could smell the smells she wrote about, feel the pain she felt. I still with all the books I have read of this genre can not believe this goes on. How do so many people involved in these childrens lives miss ALL the signs? How can a child go to school covered in filth and bruises and no one notice?

I know this was a different era, I sure hope there is more in place in this part of the world to help with awarness. Teachers taught to
Maria Aleem
Jul 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I strongly recommend people to not read this book if they can not handle real life murders and sexual abuse. If there was a way to un-read a book, I'd unread this. A part of me really wishes to hold back the sentiments and put this back on my shelf just as any other book I read but I guess that will never be the case. This is one of the very few books that I would never forget. I think it gave me an entire new perspective towards life as it is. It was a very, very, very hard read. And at a point ...more
Feb 07, 2011 rated it liked it this woman has not followed the same path as her siblings I will never know... I can't comprehend how parents would want to do this. It's just so far from my realm of understanding. But at the same time the mother had obviously suffered guilt at some level to act the way she did coming to the end of Cynthia's life in the house, but by the time Cynthia confronted her parents this guilt had been buried between another mountain of sins and trying to forget them all. Disturbing memoi ...more
Jan 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
finished this book last night, this one is a true story.. i kind of wish i had never read it at all, not because it's a bad book but because of how horrific this womans story is and the amount of abuse and tragedy her and her family went through, you could cry for this family :(
Jun 01, 2010 rated it really liked it
I had to take a break from the book for a few days due to the disgusting abuse the writer was going through. Sick parents!
Nikita Tanwani
Jan 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: auto-biographies
How people survive what Cynthia did is beyond me. And then they become valuable, kind, caring human beings.
It's amazing

That people do this kind of things to each other, to children, to their own children just floors me.

I am speechless
Jan 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant and heart-wrenching book. I can't even comprehend what Cynthia went through. This book is extremely well-written and one I keep comping back to.
Nov 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Aug 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
When I picked up the book I really thought I'd read it and it wouldn’t affect me at all, hey just another book about child abuse where I get really angry.

But the story turned out to really touch me and I'm even contemplating maybe changing my studies from Criminal Psychology to a more crime against children psychology.

I read this book very quickly. The author has a style that makes everything easy to read, well easy as in quick. The story is heart wrenching but you can't put it down! You want to
Mar 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was a hard book to read, you do spend most of the time reading this wondering where was everyone? Was there no-one to help her, did no-one notice? Although at the same time it doesn't surprise considering the revelations which have come out about church institutions in recent times.

This book has been written in such a style that you can hear the voice of a child retelling it, while not graphic in words describing the abuse, it still provides powerful imagery. She is a credit to humanity fo
Jun 14, 2016 rated it liked it
this book was well written.

Putting aside what this woman must have gone through and concentrating on the story ...

I found it terribly depressing. That there was no justice in end I really felt cheated.

The main incident of crime, i found absolutely horrifying, like something out of a horror movie - and i dont scare easily. I guess i am lucky i dont have children because if that had happened to an animal instead - i wouldve thrown the book down in disgust and wouldnt have been able to read it

I di
Tracy Blaine
Dec 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a disturbing book, but also very interesting
its a true story that really makes you think of how low and depraved some parents can be.
This story pulled at my heart strings and totally shocked me.
How professional people never saw the signs of neglect and abuse is beyond me but more important how can this kind of abuse still exist today.
It was a very very sad story but an absolutely amazing book
Ive read probably 100 books on these kind of subject but this is with out a doubt the best book
Billy Buttons
This is one book that you will never forget if you read it, I read it from cover to cover within days and it is the most horrific and brutal book about 2 parents abuse to their children, and it would make you wonder how someone could be so cruel to a child. There is really sad parts to the book and when you reach the end, you wonder how cynthia made it in life as a sane and great person she is. I take my hat off to her especially in what she went through and think this woman is fantastic in how ...more
Oct 30, 2016 rated it liked it
I haven't read a lot of these books, but of the few I have, this one takes the cake for most disturbing.

The sexual abuse and the mental trauma this young girl went through, is truly so messed up that it's hard to believe. These parents make people like me - a childless, thirty-something year old - angry that they ever had children! How dare they treat the lives of those young kids like they were so worthless. I was so angry that the parents went so long without paying for their crimes! God rest
Oct 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: biography-memoir
Let me say Wow! A gut-wrenching, incredible story about a child who grew up in a home dominated by such terrible neglect and abuse of every type. Reminded me of the Dave Pelzer book "A Child Called It" in quite a few ways, but this book was even more haunting and harder to read for me. I know for sure that there are stories of children whose lives are lived in this way. I have no doubt, but several times I was thinking to myself, "How much can a child take and still live through this?" Very, ver ...more
Oct 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was a very tough read and my heart breaks that someone endured the abuse she did and they got away with it. Hats off to you for being able to write about it and to have survived, I am not so sure I would have had that strength. If anything after reading this book , many should realize if you suspect abuse say something, you have no idea what could be going on, if only someone had of spoke up for the author. My heart goes out to you.
Nov 24, 2014 rated it really liked it some point, I couldn't go on anymore....what a very very horrible environment to grow up...that paedophiles as parents should be hanged or cut their genitals...yeah, n that goes for all those rapist..what a scar they had made these children bear for the rest of their lives...n those nuns, not only they didn't help but they made it worse...a very disturbingly piece for me...
Meghan O'Connor
Aug 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: e-books-i-own
Severe trigger warnings for child abuse, sexual abuse, physical, mental and emotional abuse, murder and suicide. Frankly, I'm not sure how I was able to read it. It was well-written and absolutely gut-wrenching.
May 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
this was the best book i have ever read, it was so sad, but i could not put it down, i just had to keep reading,it is very well wrote, even when i was not reading it ,i could not get it out of my mind. A real real good read...
Mar 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
WOW! Im so shocked at this true story and good on Cynthia on trying her hardest and persevering through her struggles. This book is such an inspiration and teaches you that if justice does not prevail, at least trying your hardest feels like an achievement in itself.
Jul 05, 2013 marked it as to-read
epub tuebl
Ursula Kelly
Aug 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Graphic, disturbing and very sad...... Cynthia Owen has to be one of bravest and strongest women alive to have survived all that she did had the hands of two sadistic, evil and brutal parents
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Review to follow.
Alexandra Simpson
Feb 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
It's hard to believe things like this happen. This was a heart breaking read. But made me remember I don't have it nearly as bad as some people do.
Jan 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Wow what a story.
The way this poor Woman was treated as a child is just disgusting.
Joanna Kelly
Jan 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this book from start to finish without putting it down. It's a tragic true story of a childhood lost in the most unimaginable way.
Caroline Moore
Aug 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
What an awful story :-( Cynthia, u r an amazingly brave person...Im so so sorry for what u suffered as a child <3
Sally Hope
Aug 22, 2012 rated it liked it
I found it very disturbing but all women should read it and make sure all children are safe from people like Cynthia's family.
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