L. Michael Rusin


California's Child Reviews

California’s Child has been on and off Amazon’s Top 100 Best Seller List. It has continuously been on the list

for 28 solid weeks in a row. This book has a solid five star rating for the reviews it has received.

Absolutely marvelous bookAugust 26, 2015

“What a wonderful smart ambitions man he became, with all he injured as a child, though part fiction it is full of love and magic, and such a great ending, I loved this book”

Marie Rogers

A must read. A heartening,far-reaching incredible life story and journey.August 15, 2015

“See above recommend to all a good, thoughtful read and inspiration my heart aches for the Crosses. How lovely that they he their Scotty for even a short time.”

S. Spickler

There are many times where you have to try to remember what it was like to be a child to realize that he was … –  June 7, 2015

“A very well written account of a young boy orphaned at the age of three, abused by his aunt who then gives him up to an orphanage where his life does not improve. There are many times where you have to try to remember what it was like to be a child to realize that he was making the best decisions for himself that he could at the time. Love this young boy and his journey.”


Masterful storyJanuary 6, 2015

I chose a five star rating because this is a story I’m not likely to forget. The characters, especially Scott, were easy to believe and memorable
I wish only that Scott had contacted his aunt and uncle earlier.


California’s ChildJanuary 11, 2015

This was an excellent story it had me captivated from the beginning. Scott’s story was so filled with tragedy, but at the same time filled with some wonderful loving people. I loved the ending by the way! I highly recommend this book.


Poignant, inspiring.January 14, 2015

From the start, you’re captured by the heart of the child to fight for life and dignity, and we, as was he, are rewarded with a poignant and inspirational story. L. Michael Rusin takes us on quite a ride as the youth overcomes all obstacles to becomes a man who finds success despite the disadvantages he faces as a child. It is a book all should read.

Albert A. Correia

Five StarsJanuary 31, 2015

Such a sad tale. Makes me feel sick that there are people like this roaming around the world.

Vanessa Tansey

WowMarch 6, 2015

CcccccThe government with all it’s rules just doesn’t work. What would have happened to Scott if he had gone back to St. cecilia

Audrey Sofield Barber “Civil War Buff”

Amazing story – July 20, 2015

Poor Scott went thru so much hurt throughout his life , after running away from the orphanage where he and the other children were so abused its heartbreaking, he ran into some wonderful people that loved him like a son , uncle Bob and aunt Mildred , his dog shep and others along the way in his life that loved and cared for him so much , he was blessed in that way. Maude and that friendship / bond was amazing but ended in a very sad way with her trying to protect him. I only wish he could have seen aunt Mildred and uncle Bob again and lived with them. But only God knows how and where life will takes us. The letter from Aunt Mildred at the end of the book was a tear jerker have your tissues ready , happy ending to Scott’s story!

Joy “Joy”

Loved it!July 14, 2015

“I really enjoyed reading this book. So much happens in this story and there is also some things I learned reading this book!”


Intriguing June 23, 2015

“This book will keep you wanting more. If you believe you have a rough life, you will feel differently after reading this book. There are so many obstacles this person lived through is surreal.”


It is one of the very best books I have ever read – June 16, 2015

“I do not read much, but it is one of the very best books I have ever read. It held an interest to the very end.”

Robert Waddington

Great bookMay 13, 2015

“Great book easy to read like someone’s trading it to you
He live a hard life but made it there.”

Shawnda Meek

An amazing story that captures your heart.May 4, 2015

This is an amazing story that captures your heart it is based on a true story about a nine year old boy, Scott that was in an orphanage home but left to create a life for himself. He went through some very bad times but always staying on top. This is one of the best books I’ve read in a long time, I could not put it down. The author describes the places Scott travelled, the places he stayed and worked it is defined in detail and so dramatic. The author describes the wonderful accomplishments Scott did during his lifetime, he never gave up, never quit learning new things and when things went bad he always learned from them. The end of the book was amazing. I enjoyed it from the start until the very end, this is a book that I will remember for a long time, the author is a master storyteller, A book for all ages.



I have been a fan of Mr. L. Michael Rusin since his first book “Avalon” he is an amazing author. I love this book. I COULD NOT put it down. its everything you want in a good read. It’s a page turner and yes, I went thru a box of kleenex. Mr. Rusin is an amazing man and writer. I love this book so much that I would like to share it with you. the price is right too. looking forward to his next book. you will not be disappointed.ck it out, its a wonderful book.

Rebecca Cabral

An excellent book, a book for all readers and one …October 4, 2014

With California’s Child, L. Michael Rusin has written a book that shows the diversity of his talent. It is a powerful story. It is heart breaking and heart warming. A young boy with the tenacity to survive despite overwhelming adversity. It validates the determination of the human spirit. An excellent book, a book for all readers and one well worth reading.

Steve Petranyi

Great storyOctober 22, 2014

It’s been a long time since I read anything written in the first person from the point of view of a child, but this is an entirely enjoyable read. Actually, I felt it was stronger when Scott, the central character, was younger. Some of the characters he encounters in his childhood really came to life for me. Things came together a little too easily later in the book, but it still held my attention. It’s a very good book and I wholeheartedly recommend it.


Gut-wrenching! – December 5, 2014

This is an important book with a horrifying message based on events that occurred in the not-too-distant past. It tells a sad story with an inspirational message. Based on true events, I found the consciousness-raising factor to be invaluable, and my level of empathy for unfortunate children who become the victim of circumstances beyond their control. There are some funny parts later in the book, which help to relieve the tension built up by the horrors this little boy lived through. A good read and well worth the price!

Carole Connolly

So heart wrenchingDecember 11, 2014

This book made me cry especially when the ones that Scott adored were plucked from his life. I hoped with every chapter that he would find his way back to the Cross ranch. My heart ached for Maude and I knew Shep would never be the same, as was stated in Aunt Mildred’s letter. I’m so sad that a system can fail a child so badly. It all started with his aunt who didn’t want the burden. i wonder if she ever felt remorseful. I’m still choked up. The love he gave unconditionally to his animals break my heart. He seemed to live his life by starting over and over and over. Shame on the system who beat him down. And congratulations to Scott who proved his worthiness over and over and over. A must read paired with a box of Kleenex.

Sherri Fosdick

And the real life stories don’t always have the “lived happily ever after endings”December 26, 2014

I admire the writer, not because he is my first cousin, but because he is a man that has gone after his dreams despite a life of setbacks many of us can only imagine. A lot of his life is in this story, and it flows effortlessly. He is truly a survivor. One review stated it was so different than his other books. Perhaps, in many ways it is, but it is still a story about a survivor of the system, just as the author is. It’s fiction, based on life experiences, and the real life stories don’t always have the “lived happily ever after endings”. This book was an easy read, I finished it in 3 sittings. I loved the characters and the message.

Mark A. Rusin

I especially liked the absolutely relentless desire for life that the child …December 31, 2014

This is a truly inspirational story about overcoming obstacles. The Vietnam section was less interesting to me but it was well done. I especially liked the absolutely relentless desire for life that the child showed. This story is worth way more than the charge for it on Kindle. Please buy it as you will not be disappointed!


A Wonderful StoryMay 8, 2015

“This is a story that will stay with me for a long time. It is hard to imagine how one person could endure such a hard beginning in life. But the hardships he experienced only made him strong and determined. I found it difficult to put the book down. It will make you experience a spectrum of emotions. Wonderfully written.”

Marianne Allen

Wonderful StoryApril 27, 2015

“Brilliant book.Very well written. Highly recommend this book.”

Sharon Lapham

The list childMarch 28, 2015

Best book I have read yet, and loads of tears at the end!!!! Brilliant…..didn’t want book to end on a sad note….I wanted him to be reunited with shep the dog..!!!!”

Amazon Customer

Five StarsMarch 10, 2015


Amazon Customer

I didn’t want the book to end…March 8, 2015

After an author-friend told me how well California’s Child was doing, I decided to download the sample version. It was an easy decision to buy the full version. California’s Child was one of those books that you look forward to reading when you wake up in the middle of the night. I couldn’t put it down, yet I didn’t want it to end. Scotty’s life of trauma and adventure was largely sprinkled with good fortune. Talk about a guy who made the most of every situation! I finished the book quickly and will now look for another that will create the same reading pleasures as this one.


Review of California’s ChildDecember 13, 2014

The book was very interesting many different aspects of life. I really enjoyed reading the book, it was hard to put it down as was Avalon! Mr Rusin is a very talented author and I will read his next book as soon as it is released.

Joseph G.

Liked itNovember 29, 2014

Very good book

Phyl “bonnie’s mom”

Great storyNovember 16, 2014

Loved the entire story. At times I was somewhat disappointed of why Scott never kept in touch with the few people that brought kindness into his sad life. However, not my place to judge. Beautifully written story and we’ll worth reading.

avid reader “babcias5”

California’s ChildOctober 23, 2014

I would recommend this book to anyone, absolutely one of the best stories of overcoming bad things I have ever read. how this child survived is amazing, he had to have a guiding spirit. thank you Mr. Rusin

Mary Granger