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Twenty-One Boxes

Robin's Story and the Tragedy of the Edenton Seven

In this explosive legal expose from author Betsy Hester comes the story of the Little Rascals Day Care Trial.  The owners and five others were accused of unimaginable crimes of sexual abuse against more than 90 children.

In this true, modern-day witch hunt, the hysteria led to North Carolina's longest and most expensive criminal trial.

What are readers saying about Twenty-One Boxes?



"Twenty-One Boxes is a must read! I was hooked from the beginning. Such a compelling deep dive into the Little Rascals case, woven together with Robin’s personal narrative. Heartbreaking and anger-inducing for the injustices that occurred! An excellent read that really gets to the TRUTH!"

"Let the truth be told. "

-Leigh M, Verified Reader


"Best account of the REAL truth..."

"I am from Edenton and have followed the Little Rascals Daycare cases for over 30 years. I found this book heartbreaking yet hopeful. It is the best accounting of the truth of what really happened all those years ago. It’s very well written and explains the nightmare that Robin and the others went thru. I said it’s heartbreaking because of the children that were led to believe they had been abused. That has lifelong consequences. My heart goes out to all of them. It’s my hope and prayer that the defendants (specifically my friend Robin) can be exonerated in the near future."

-Rebecca D, Verified Reader


"I found this book to be very interesting and hope it will open up the eyes of others to see truth and how this courageous young woman and six others , had their lives up ended and changed forever. I hope it will enlighten people about a justice system that is/has been broken. I followed this trial during that time , and am still amazed how these folks were charged and jailed for years without one shred of physical evidence or proof."

"A captivating read! "

Amazon Customer, Verified Reader

in the news

In an interview with Carolina Journal, Hester described the gross incompetence of the investigation and the legal system failing to protect the rights of the accused.

“If any one of the prosecutors and investigators had just slowed down and asked, ‘Could this really happen?’ this tragedy could have been avoided.”


“Twenty-One Boxes tells the inspirational story of an eighteen-year-old girl caught in the satanic child abuse hysteria that consumed Edenton. Robin Couto (Byrum) faced an agonizing moral choice: lie to save herself or tell the truth and lose everything. In a time when moral courage and steadfast principles are in short supply, Robin’s courageous decision to follow her moral compass when so many others cast theirs aside should inspire us all.”

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