By Katherine Locke
PULSE is starting a new series with children’s literature book recommendations. These books may be of interest to you, to your patients, or to your students. I recommend books that have been well-received by the American Library Association and when possible, written by authors with a direct connection to the issue at hand. This month, I’m recommending three books with autistic characters though I believe they’d appeal to readers with or without Autism Spectrum Disorder. Two books were written by the parents of an autistic child and one by a woman with Asperger’s.
~ Katherine Locke
Noah Chases the Wind by Michelle Worthington,
illustrated by Joseph Cowman
‘Noah is different. He sees, hears, feels, and thinks in ways that other people don't always understand, and he asks a lot of questions along the way. Noah loves science, especially the weather. His books usually provide him with the answers he needs, until one day, there's one question they don't answer—and that is where Noah's windy adventure begins.
Filled with rich, sweeping illustrations, this picture book celebrates the inquisitive nature of all children, including those on the autism spectrum, who cannot stop asking a question until an answer has been unearthed.
The book contains a page of information for parents, caregivers, and educators about the importance of helping children feel good about their differences and know that being different is okay.’
The following links are provided if you are interested in purchasing this book:
Barnes and Noble
The Real Boy by Anne Ursu
‘On an island on the edge of an immense sea there is a city, a forest, and a boy. The city is called Asteri, a perfect city saved by the magic woven into its walls when a devastating plague swept through the world years before. The forest is called the Barrow, a vast wood of ancient trees that encircles the city and feeds the earth with magic. And the boy is called Oscar, a shop boy for the most powerful magician in the Barrow, who spends his days in the dark cellar of his master’s shop grinding herbs and dreaming of the wizards who once lived on the island. Oscar’s world is small, but he likes it that way. The real world is vast, strange, and unpredictable. And Oscar does not quite fit in it.
But it’s been a long time since anyone who could call himself a wizard walked the world, and now that world is changing. Children in the city are falling ill; something sinister lurks in the forest. Oscar has long been content to stay in his small room, comforted in the knowledge that the magic that flows from the trees will keep his island safe. Now, even magic may not be enough to save it.’
The following links are provided for if you are interested in purchasing this book:
Barnes and Noble
On The Edge of Gone by Corinne Duyvis
That’s the day the comet is scheduled to hit—the big one. Denise and her mother and sister, Iris, have been assigned to a temporary shelter near their hometown of Amsterdam to wait out the blast, but Iris is nowhere to be found, and at the rate Denise’s drug-addicted mother is going, they’ll never reach the shelter in time.
Then a last-minute encounter leads them to something better than a temporary shelter: a generation ship that’s scheduled to leave Earth behind and colonize new worlds after the comet hits. But each passenger must have a practical skill to contribute. Denise is autistic and fears that she’ll never be allowed to stay. Can she obtain a spot before the ship takes flight? What about her mother and sister?
The following links are provided for purchasing this book:
Barnes and Noble