Sunday, October 18, 2009

Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger's - John Elder Robison

I found this book on the wall of the library promoting Mental Health Day. I thought it looked pretty interesting and I always need a good non-fiction book to read on my lunch break at work. When I got the book I was unaware that the author was the brother of Augusten Burroughs (the author of Running With Scissors). For anyone who has read Running With Scissors, you must realize how insane the family was and I knew that this book was going to be interesting.

This was a really amazing look into the life of someone with Asperger's Syndrome. According to Wikipedia, Asperger's Syndrome is "an autism spectrum disorder, and people with it therefore show significant difficulties in social interaction, along with restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior and interests". This book was so interesting because the author didn't realize he had Aspergers until he was quite old - in his late 30's. He had been taken to a number of mental health specialists when he was younger and they all said he was just bad and deviant - no one knew he actually had a medical condition. Learning about his childhood and am surprised that John Elder Robison turned out as well as he did. It must have been so difficult to have everyone telling you that you are pretty much a sociopath when you actually have a medical condition.

I loved how John Elder Robison wrote the book explaining why he does and says the things the way that he does them. He takes us through his thinking process and that gave me a lot of insight into Asperger's. This book had some really funny parts to it and some great stories that made me laugh out loud. A good read!

Rating - 3

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