; AUTISM ALL-STARS; (Nonfiction: Autobiography & Memoir, Nonfiction: Autobiography & Memoir) $19.95 ISBN: 9781843101888
Byline: Patty Comeau
For any newly-diagnosed autistic person, the silver lining is in your hands. Accentuating the positive aspects of the traits experienced by various individuals, Autism All-Stars emerges as one of few books for readers of all ages to examine the benefits of being neurologically "atypical." Editor Josie Santomauro created the book she sought years ago when her son, Damian, was diagnosed -- and in Damian's own contribution, he describes the way that his childhood fascination with the behavior of others (a coping mechanism for his sense of being "abnormal") developed into a career in psychology. In a straightforward and uncensored way, the contributors relate deeply personal experiences in detail, inviting readers to see parts of themselves in the story.
Hailing predominantly from the UK and Australia, the writers vary greatly: some were diagnosed with autism or Asperger's syndrome early in life, while others reached retirement only to discover that this label might fit; some, like well-known author Temple Grandin, offer direct advice about workplace etiquette ("I had to learn diplomacy"); other individuals write about putting traits to work in useful, satisfying pursuits. Central to the book is the assertion that being true to oneself, by self-investigation and self-evaluation, is the key to success. "Now, if only we could persuade the...