Sunday, April 8, 2012

Victoria Ferrante: "Love held Christina steady and kept her grounded while autism tried to smash her against the rocks."

Hope by Victoria Ferrante (Amazon) is not a pleasant book. It is not an uplifting book and it is not a lighthearted book. It is, however, a book very strongly rooted in reality. It follows the journey of a young mother struggling to raise her autistic daughter. Everywhere she turns for help she finds only roadblocks and a lack of compassion. I do not want to spoil the ending, but I do want to warn you: just like in life, there is no happily ever after or miracle cure for autism.

I think that this book will be very controversial among people who have autistic family members or work with autistic individuals. Some people may say that it ignores some of the joys that can come from raising an autistic child. I think that it is important to remember that the author is the parent of an autistic child and that she wrote the book to raise awareness of some of the more extreme circumstances caretakers of autistic children may find themselves in. 

I actually don't think I would necessarily recommend this book to someone who is struggling with  raising an autistic child. I would instead recommend it to anyone who dares to pass judgement on people who are doing their best, or who are unable to understand the challenges faced when raising an autistic (or otherwise disabled) child. Victoria Ferrante's writing does an excellent job of capturing the inner turmoil and anxiety that parents of autistic children face.

I found contact information on Victoria Ferrante's website and I wrote her a note:

"I read Hope as part of the April 9th Book Blast. I just wanted to let you know that I thought it was amazingly done. Your writing evoked strong emotions in me, and I hope that those who do not understand autism or the challenges faced by those who care for individuals with autism read your book. I am sure it will help them understand, and perhaps reach out to help those in need."

I am giving away an ebook version of this novel. This giveaway is open until April 16th and is international.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Feel free to enter and tell your friends!

Disclaimer: I was asked to review Hope by Victoria Ferrante as part of a book blast run by Fierce Reading Virtural Book Tours. A copy of the book was provided to me.

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