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Autism All-Stars: How We Use Our Autism and Asperger Traits to Shine in Life

by Josie Santomauro Jessica Kingsley Publishers
Pub Date:
Pbk 192 pages
AU$35.99 NZ$37.38
Product Status: Available in Approx 14 days
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Looking at the positive influences, great talents and unique thought processes of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders, this book is a celebration of those who have used their autism to shine in life.

Writers from all over the world at different stages in their careers, and from very different backgrounds, share their experiences of creating a successful life on the autism spectrum. Each explains how it is possible to draw on autistic strengths not just to make your way in the world, overcoming challenges and obstacles, but also to make your life a real success. Education, the world of work, and relationships are the focus of the first part of the book, which then goes on to look at exceptional creativity, and the use of special interests.

The autobiographical stories in this book are full of wisdom and humour, and will be an inspiration for anyone with high-functioning autism or Asperger Syndrome, their family and friends, and the professionals who work alongside them.

Foreword by Tony Attwood. Introduction. Josie Santomauro. Part 1: Education. 1. An Education in Doodling. Jessica Peers. 2. The Ugly Duckling. Stan Hood. 3. Studying through Diagnosis. Iain Payne. Part 2: Careers. 4. Talented People Getting Employed. Temple Grandin. 5. Counseling that Works. Roger N. Meyer. 6. To Be or Not to Be. Damian Santomauro. 7. Successful Management – Savant Style. Malcolm Johnson. 8. Super Strengths. Sondra Williams. Part 3: Relationships. 9. Friendships – Aspie Style. Dr Wendy Lawson. 10. A Different Order of Being. Stephen Shore. 11. Talking to the Animals. Deborah Lipsky. Part 4: Creativity. 12. Life on Stage. Robert McLachlan. 13. Donna Williams and The Aspinauts. Donna Williams. 14. Portraits – Learning Honesty in Art. Jeanette Purkis. 15. Asperger Syndrome: How It and Art Influence Me. Peter Myers. 16. Aural Sculpting – Before and After. Colin Webber. Part 5: Special Interests. 17. Musical Creativity. Leith McMurray. 18. The Recordings of a Rock Wiz. Mark Boerebach. 19. Sci-Fi Reality. Will Hadcroft.

The book is an anthology of people on the spectrum who have often endured tremendous struggles in a world ill-equipped to meet their needs but have managed, in adulthood, to find a niche where they can shine and use their assets. With age and experience many have developed strategies which enable them to function in the nuero typical world and to self advocate so that their needs are understood and met... Any child who has been bullied can take heart from the stories in the book. I liked that each person was successful in a different way, some by the conventional definition of success and others on their own terms... The book should encourage those on the spectrum to be resilient and to have hope that with time, effort and the right support they too can find their place in the world and share their unique talents. The accounts were all well written and easy to read with a good mix to keep everything fresh. I would recommend the book for anyone aged 12 upwards as well as parents and educators. It is an enjoyable and easy read, and there is a story for everyone. The book gives realistic hope and inspiration. It is not just for the highly gifted. Whether a person is super talented or more challenged they can take something away from the book GÇô with the right support and encouragement plus hard work most people can lead productive and fulfilling lives, ideally doing what they enjoy and are good at.
Josie Santomauro is a full-time writer living in Brisbane, Australia. Her son, Damian, was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome at the age of five. Josie has written several books on AS, as well as numerous fiction books for children and young adults under the name Josie Montano. She regularly gives seminars and talks on AS, and in 2009 was awarded the Parent/Carer Award in recognition of outstanding achievement by Autism Queensland Australia.