Book Review: A Man Named Dave: A Story of Triumph and Forgiveness (Dave Pelzer #3) by Dave Pelzer

"All those years you tried your best to break me, and I'm still here. One day you'll see, I'm going to make something of myself." —Dave Pelzer, from A Man Named Dave

These words were Dave Pelzer's declaration of independence to his mother, and they represented the ultimate act of self-reliance. Dave's father never intervened as his mother abused him with shocking brutality, denying him food and clothing, torturing him in any way she could imagine. This was the woman who told her son she could kill him any time she wanted to-and nearly did. The more than two million readers of Pelzer's previous international bestsellers, A Child Called "It" and The Lost Boy, know that he lived to tell his courageous story. A Man Named Dave is the gripping conclusion to his inspirational trilogy. With stunning generosity of spirit, Dave Pelzer invites readers on his journey to discover how he turned shame into pride and rejection into acceptance.

Release Date: September 5, 2000
Age Group: Adult
Publisher: Penguin Group
Source: Borrowed
Other Books in the Series: A Child Called "It", The Lost Boy

A Man Named Dave was the third installment in the Dave Pelzer trilogy.  This book chronicled his life from ages 18 and up.  It was just as compelling as the first two books, and, once again, I could not put this book down!  There is something so powerful and gripping about Dave's writing.  I found myself rooting for his happiness and success throughout the entire book, and cried at the emotional ending.

My husband and I were driving to a specialist's office two hours away from our home, and we were supposed to be having quality time together, as my mom was home with our baby and we had all morning to talk uninterrupted.  However, I was a bad wife and read A Man Named Dave for nearly an hour instead of talking to my sweet husband!  I didn't want to do it, and hated myself for it, but I was close to the end of the book and just had to know what happened to Dave!  My husband asked, "Is this the last book in this series?  I am so tired of you not talking to me while you keep reading these books!"  I told him that it was, but then, at the end of the book, I saw that Dave has written two motivational books (which I immediately bought) so my husband is going to have to put up with me having my nose in a Dave Pelzer book for a little longer! 

Dave's main focus in this novel was trying to find answers as to why his mother abused him the way she did.  Despite the fact that he was rescued from her household at age 12, and eventually found love from a foster family, he still seeks his mother's love and acceptance.  He has several emotionally draining and painful encounters with his mother in this book, and while he never fully gains the closure he so desires, he does come to a place of acceptance and forgiveness.  The fact that Dave can forgive his mother shows what a strong and inherently good person he is.

Dave has not had an easy life, and in fact, it is hard to believe all of the hard times he has endured.  I'm not saying I don't believe him, it's just sad that someone could have so many hardships.  But, he finds happiness in the end, and I loved that.  He is a testament to the strength of the human spirit and a great example of what faith in God can do for a person.

I give this book, and the series as a whole, the highest of recommendations.  I loved it, and will definitely be reading Dave's other books.  I want his secret--I want to be motivated to live as positively as he does!


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