Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyThe sexual abuses suffered during a seven-month period from 1984-1985 by 51 students at the Wee Care Day Nursery in Maplewood, N.J., led to a widely publicized trial and 1987 conviction of teacher Margaret Kelly Michaels. Basing her book on numerous interviews and daily attendance at the trail, first-time author Manshel recounts, often in excessive detail, the experiences of children, parents, school and child agency staffs, medical experts and legal officials. While she perceptively discusses the emotional court proceedings and the case's trauma for most concerned, Manshel wisely leaves long-range psychological prognoses to professionals. She points out, however, that the legal system gives children little credence as witnesses. (Jan.)
Library Journal - Library JournalIn 1985, the passing remarks of a small boy in a New Jersey suburb, who told of how his teacher took his temperature, led to a massive child abuse investigation which eventually involved 51 students at a day care center. The children told of bizarre sexual acts they were forced to perform on each other and on their teacher, Margaret Kelly Michaels, who was later convicted of 115 criminal charges. Manshel has adeptly covered the many facets of the case, from the pain suffered by the children and parents, to the problems investigators and prosecutors had in trying to piece together the story, to the drama of the trial, where the children testified via closed-circuit television. Some skeptics may question the possibly leading nature of some of the investigation; but all will be convinced that horrible things did indeed happen at the hands of Kelly Michaels. A troubling but well-written account that will remain with the reader long after the verdict is read. Highly recommended.-- Sally G. Waters, Stetson Law Lib., St. Petersburg, Fla.
BooknewsThe story of sexual abuse at a suburban New Jersey day-care center. Based on undocumented interviews and trial testimony, and lacking context as well as theory, this entire project looks as sleazy as the title. No index, bibliography, notes, or documentation of any kind. (RC) Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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