Reviews & Comments

Nutmeg is the story of a child adrift in foster care. It is based on the experiences of the author who worked with challenged youngsters for over 30 years. Her tale will make you laugh, make you cry, and finally whoop with joy as Nutmeg succeeds in a difficult world.

If you have had experience in child welfare, either as a worker or as a person in care, we’d love to hear from you. Please write us a note in the box below.

12 Thoughts.

  1. An excellent book. Provides a heart-warming account that shows how the system can enhance an individual child’s welfare.

  2. Hi Dalton,
    Many of our systems today for helping kids are losing essentail funding, so if you get a chance to help these kids, please take it. They desperatly need our support.

    Glad you enjoyed the book!

  3. A great many children are born and raised in difficult circumstances. We must remain a caring society so that our Nutmegs can live productive and happy lives.

    • In the current social-service, foster care, justice system the need is crucial. Kids sneed more than just financial support: they need caring, discipline, exercise, stimulation and support for at l;east 18 years, and sometimes more.

  4. “Nutmeg” a novel by Jacqui Kelley-Kinnie This is a review by Dr. Emanuel Klein.
    This novel proved to be for me an ultimately heart warming tale about a seven year old precocious child of a psychotic and abusive mother and an apparently long gone father. Normal parental tutorial behavior that, if it had been extended to the child, would have helped her to grow and mature has been cut off for her. Indeed, as the novel progresses we learn that that is not the only thing cut off for her.
    A reader soon learns that the child, who self identifies as “black on the outside but white on the inside” has adopted a hateful persona as a protective mechanism following a series of foster child arrangements some of which also were abusive and an adoptive situation that proved to be a disaster both for the child and the prospective adoptive parents.
    A court ordered removal of the child from her psychotic mother fortunately for the child places her in the custody of “Children’s Garden” which as described in the book is a wonderful California program for the rehabilitation of sadly abused and deprived children which hopefully for each child leads to a successful adoption process.
    The rehabilitative techniques used by the personnel employed by “Children’s Garden” make a worthwhile read for any normal parental / children household.
    At the “Children’s Garden” the child at the center of this novel, whose name is Katie insists dogmatically on being called “Nutmeg” hence the name of the novel. The story is told by a Psychologist who worked very closely with the child. Why the name “Nutmeg”and the process that leads to how the story ends makes this e-book a worthwhile read for almost any adult, in my opinion.

    • Thanks for your kind words, Dr. Klein. While it is true that Children’s Garden was ( it no longer exists unfortunately) a marvelous treatment and placement agency, not all of our kids could be adopted. A common myth abounds which says that all kids should be adopted: this view does not take into consideration that the bonding between even abusive, neglectful parents and their kids may be so strong that a child will not accept an adoptive family. frequently, until and unless they feel worthy of love, closeness, affection, a child cannot commit to another family. However, a genuine long-term placement rather than foster-care “drift” is most certainly required for the kids whose been abandoned to be able to grow up and succeed normally.

  5. “Nutmeg”,based upon the turbulent life of a real child trapped in a dysfunctional foster-care system,is a spellbinding novel written by her dedicated therapist. Tuck this compelling book into your flight bag or beach bag: you won’t be able to put it down!

  6. Nutmeg
    Jacqui Kelley-Kinnie

    This novel is a fictionalized account of an actual seven-year old girl whose unfortunate experiences in foster homes left her defiant, belligerent, and trusting no one. The author takes us through her ups and downs, her advances and setbacks, at Children’s Garden. The patience of the staff in dealing with her often maddening behavior takes a prominent place in the story as do the procedures used to modify and re-shape her behavior. This is a touching story of caring people and an unusual little girl whose almost intractable behavior gives way gradually to kind and skillful treatment. She develops trust and attachment and learns to have healthy feelings toward both other children and adults. The reader will find his or her feelings pulled into and along with the developments in the story to the final accomplishment–acceptance into a family she can call her own. It is a fulfilling story that any reader will find gratifying.

    Noel Wilson Smith, Ph.D.

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