Wednesday, December 15, 2010

My Brother Charlie by Holly Peete Robinson and Ryan Elizabeth Peete

This book is a must read for everyone, even if you do not have an autistic child or do not work with autistic children.  Robinson and her daughter Ryan have created a simple, honest and heartwarming narrative about what it is like to have an autistic sibling.  Though the book is geared to helping children understand, my experience tells me that there are a number of adults who should read this book as well.  

The story is told by Callie who explains what autism is and how her family cares for her brother Charlie.  She is frank and open about the challenges as well as the special way she feels for Charlie. “I’ve learned from Charlie that love doesn’t always come from what you say. It can also come from what you do” and “there are days when it’s hard to be Charlie’s sister. . . Sometimes he can ruin the best playdates; other times he won’t speak” paint a clear picture of what it is like to live with someone who has autism.  The story is told with an endearing childlike honesty and frankness.  A concluding note at the end of the book offers more information about the Peete family’s experience as well as additional information on autism.  This is book is an excellent resource for introducing the subject of autism to young children or starting a discussion on how to deal with a disability.

Recommended for Kindergarten and up.

Mrs. Archer’s rating:  5 of 5!!!

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