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Publisher's Summary

From the author of the best-selling The Reason I Jump, an extraordinary self-portrait of life as a young adult with autism

"Essential reading for parents and teachers who work with individuals with autism who remain nonverbal." (Temple Grandin)  

Naoki Higashida was only 13 when he wrote The Reason I Jump, a revelatory account of autism from the inside by a nonverbal Japanese child, which became an international success. Now he shares his thoughts and experiences as a 24-year-old man living each day with severe autism. In short, powerful chapters, Higashida explores school memories, family relationships, the exhilaration of travel, and the difficulties of speech. He also allows listeners to experience profound moments we take for granted, like the thought-steps necessary for him to register that it’s raining outside. Acutely aware of how strange his behavior can appear to others, he aims throughout to foster a better understanding of autism and to encourage society to see people with disabilities as people, not as problems.   

With an introduction by best-selling novelist David Mitchell, Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8 also includes a dreamlike short story Higashida wrote especially for this edition. Both moving and of practical use, this book opens a window into the mind of an inspiring young man who meets every challenge with tenacity and good humor. However often he falls down, he always gets back up.   

©2017 Naoki Higashida (P)2017 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Naoki Higashida's success as a writer now transcends his diagnosis.... His relative isolation - with words as his primary connection to the outside world - has allowed him to fully develop the powers of observation that are necessary for good writing, and he has developed rich, deep perspectives on ideas that many take for granted.... The diversity of Higashidas writing, in both subject and style, fits together like a jigsaw puzzle of life put in place with humor and thoughtfulness." (The Japan Times)

"Profound insights about what the struggle of living with autism is really like.... Once again, the invitation to step inside Higashida's mind is irresistible." (London Evening Standard)

"Naoki Higashida's lyrical and heartfelt account of his condition is a gift to anyone involved with the same challenges.... Higashida shows a delicate regard for the difficulties his condition creates...and is adept at explaining his experiences in language that makes sense to neurotypicals." (The Guardian)

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  • Diana
  • Antelope Valley, CA, United States
  • 12-19-17

Gracefully written with insightful observations

Beautiful writing. Spare, concise, direct, and meaningful. Nudges the reader toward awareness and away from pity.

This is one of the books that I've experienced that makes me feel expanded - as if my mind has opened up a new way of seeing and thinking.

Naoki Higashida points out people's behavior by sharing his experiences and observations, and makes us better for having seen ourselves through his eyes. And, Naoki's descriptions of what is going on inside - of which there is no hint from what we see going on outside - is illuminating, inspiring, and somewhat humbling.

Reflective aftermath.

Narration and production of this audio book are excellent.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful