Friday, March 30, 2012

World Autism Day is April 2nd

April is Autism Awareness Month and April 2nd is World Autism Day!
Just yesterday the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released its latest report that estimates 1 in every 88 U.S. children has autism. With prevalence so high, it is likely we all interact, on many levels, with individuals diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum. I’m spreading the word and offering a lovely way to gain insight into the world of autism. There are many great books---both nonfiction and fiction—that offer information and experiences to enlighten.  (My suggestions include books addressing Asperger’s Syndrome as well as autism. This list is not comprehensive so please explore our library.)  Read a book or share a book ...



Recently a woman came into our library with copies of this book after purchasing MANY copies. She explained that the book had “changed her life and her son’s life” and that she wanted to donate the books anywhere she was able. I want to share her story and thank her for her efforts and suggestions.

Look me in the eye : my life with Asperger's / by John Elder Robison “The author describes life growing up different in an odd family, his unusual talents, his struggle to live a ‘normal’ life, his diagnosis at the age of forty with Asperger's syndrome, and the dramatic changes that have occurred since that diagnosis.”
The unwritten rules of social relationships / by Temple Grandin & Sean Barron
Dr. Temple Grandin is autistic. Her work and writing on autism is phenomenal. In this bookthe authors address the social challenges faced by those with autism and Asperger's, explaining in the process how confusing and illogical normal societal rules can be. They also address the ‘unwritten rule’ that most children understand instinctively but are a mystery to those on the spectrum.”

Fiction—these fictional characters will tug at your heart
The speed of dark / Elizabeth Moon Journeys inside the mind of Lou Arrendale, an autistic man, who is asked to undergo a new, experimental treatment designed to cure autism, as he struggles with the question of whether or not he should risk a medical procedure that could make him ‘normal.’”  Moon’s other books are also very well done.
House rules : a novel / Jodi Picoult  A teenager with Asperger's syndrome--smart, quirky, with a passion for crime scene analysis--winds up on trial for murder.”
The minotaur : a novel / Barbara Vine Because it was recently suggested to me, I hesitate slightly as I suggest this book; I have not read it yet. However, the author (Ruth Rendell , pseudonym Barbara Vine) is wonderful and because the featured character is initially misdiagnosed, I hope the book illustrates common misconceptions.
The omega theory : a novel / Mark Alpert  “When their autistic son Michael--a genius descended from Albert Einstein--is abducted by a cult bent on the destruction of the world, science historian David Swift and quantum physicist Monique Reynolds must stop the cult members from recreating the Big Bang and destroying mankind.”
The second opinion / Michael Palmer. A medical thriller featuring a character with Asperger’s syndrome
The curious incident of the dog in the night-time : a novel / Mark Haddon
This book is popular and well known but the book, particularly the first person narration, is too fantastic not to mention again. “Despite his overwhelming fear of interacting with people, Christopher, a mathematically-gifted, autistic boy, decides to investigate the murder of a neighbor's dog and uncovers secret information about his mother.”
Marcelo in the real world / Francisco X. Stork
“Marcelo Sandoval, a seventeen-year-old boy on the high-functioning end of the autistic spectrum, faces new challenges, including romance and injustice, when he goes to work for his father in the mail room of a corporate law firm.”
(The book summaries in quotes are from the PCPL catalog.)
Thank you for reading/mk

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