Same But Different: Teen Life on the Autism Express
Through alternating narratives based on their own lives, Ryan Elizabeth Peete and her twin brother, RJ, who has autism, bravely and honestly reveal what it means to be a teen living with the disorder.
With insight and humor, Same But Different explores the many aspects of teen autism, while daring to address issues and feelings nobody talks about. This powerfully rendered, timely book is the only one of its kind. It paints an important story of hope for teens and families living with autism—and lets us see that everybody’s unique rhythm is worth dancing to.
The book does a great job of addressing some of the challenges that face Charlie, who has autism, and Callie, who does her best to be there for her brother as they both try to figure out being a teenager in addition to living with autism. The guilt, frustrations, and joys were apparent as the reader was invited to share in the family’s experiences that might not be “normal,” and can prove to be daily challenges for Callie and Charlie. The love that both twins have for one another is powerful and inspiring, even as both occasionally struggle with coming to terms with their lives being different.
Overall, this book offers some wonderful and honest insight into life with autism from a fresh perspective and authentic voices.
Callie and Charlie are twins. Charlie, like Ryan Peete, was diagnosed early on as having Autism. Being able to witness every day events through both their eyes brings depth to not only the story but also the characters themselves. It is not surprising that both Callie and Charlie seem so real. The emotions are raw and honest. The voice of each character is unique and powerful. As the story goes on you get to experience life side by side with Callie and Charlie. The emotional highs of having friends and being accepted to the lows when you discover that your twin brother is being made fun of and you want to protect him. The struggle to stand on your own, but be a shoulder for your family is real not only to Callie but to Charlie too.
The Peete's are an incredible family who are an inspiration to all. This is a story of struggling to fit in, struggling to fight for the right to be you, the journey of self-discovery, and most of all the power of unconditional love and family. The story will touch your heart in ways you cannot imagine.
Same But Different is a book all middle school and high school students should read.
Short and powerful chapters