For many of us, the word autism doesn’t mean much. We’ve all heard of the movie Rain Man, and everyone is very aware of the war on vaccines. We’ve seen the multi-colored puzzle pieces on the backs of minivans. But unless we personally know someone who has autism, we tend to look the other way.
I was recently sent In a Different Key: The Story of Autism, and WOW is it powerful! It’s long–about 580 pages, with another 100+ pages of notes, and covers at least 50 years of history, from discovery to present day.
The story of autism isn’t a pretty one. There are more villains than heroes–and sometimes even the people searching for answers caused more harm than good a lot of the time. Thankfully, the story seems to be getting better, and it isn’t over yet.
While this is nonfiction, it reads like a novel, and a gorgeous one at that. The authors obviously did fantastically thorough research and it shows. The book does not read like a series of case studies–you really get to know the people for who they are. In a Different Key is fully deserving of its subtitle: The Story of Autism. I can promise you, that if you were in the category of people of my first paragraph, you won’t be after reading this book.
Blogging for Books provided a copy of this book for an unbiased review.