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5.0 1
Middle Grade Fiction 314
Jason is...anything but typical
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Autism is in the news a lot these days. And why wouldnt it be? The statistics are alarming; more and more kids are diagnosed every day with everything from Aspergers to Rett Syndrome and everything in between. Happily, great strides have been made in facilitating communication with those who have autism (on ALL sides of the spectrum).

Nora Raleigh Baskins book, Anything But Typical is told from the viewpoint of an autistic boy. Jason is a sixth grader and a talented kid. But he also has a lot of trouble dealing with the day-to-day world in ways that a non-autistic person has problems comprehending.

But that doesnt mean he cant feel love and fear and hope and jealousy. He just feels them and expresses them in his own way.

Jason is also a writer and he posts stories online. He meets a girl named Rebecca that way and she loves his writing. He looks forward to her stories too and waits impatiently for her to comment on his. If Jason were a normal boy, youd say he has a crush on her.

But Jason knows he isnt typical and he doesnt think theres anyway he can have a real relationship with Rebecca if he ever got the chance to meet her.

And then he gets that chance. Can he take it? If he does, what will happen?

Also throughout the book we see his mother struggling to deal with Jasons autism. Its honest and true and touching to see her frustration and love, but also Jasons.

In short, this is a great book. I wouldnt expect anything less from Baskin, honestly. Its a bittersweet story and emotionally real. And it isnt just a must-read for those dealing with autism (on either side), but also for anyone who has ever had trouble fitting in and finding their place in the world...not to mention tweens and teens that like to write. Jason has a lot of advice on that subject as well. Recommended for ages 10 and up.
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