Customer Reviews for

Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger's

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Perfect Insight

I am a school teacher and have been around autism all of my life. My uncle has autism. 'Look Me In The Eye' gives you insight of the life of a boy and a man living with autism. John Elder Robison seems at the upper (higher functioning) end of the autism spectrum. M...
I am a school teacher and have been around autism all of my life. My uncle has autism. 'Look Me In The Eye' gives you insight of the life of a boy and a man living with autism. John Elder Robison seems at the upper (higher functioning) end of the autism spectrum. Mr. Robison's way of telling his life story is phenomenal. I had trouble putting the book down. The insight that he gives about someone with autism is great. If you know anyone with autism or are in a profession that may have to deal with autism, this is definitely a book to read.

posted by JennyD525 on April 7, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

A Book That Makes You Smile and Cry

People with Aspergers see the world differently than you and me. I read a memoir, called Look Me in the Eye by John Elder Robinson. It is a great book, I would recommend to adult readers. The story is about a boy named John Elder Robison who lives his life not knowing h...
People with Aspergers see the world differently than you and me. I read a memoir, called Look Me in the Eye by John Elder Robinson. It is a great book, I would recommend to adult readers. The story is about a boy named John Elder Robison who lives his life not knowing he has Aspergers. John Elder struggles to socialize correctly and doesn't know why he can't make friends. As Entertainment Weekly newspaper says, "Growing up was a mystifying experience for John Elder Robison, a bright kid unable to grasp even the most basic social skills - a condition he later learned was a form of autism called Aspergers." Aspergers is a form of autism mostly affecting the person's social skills. I really liked the part where John is a little boy and decides to name his little brother "Varmint. I really did like this book but I would not recommend it to young readers. I don't think that this would be a good book for young readers because it is slow and not very action packed and some of the content, it could get boring for some readers.

posted by BaileyT7E on April 8, 2009

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  • Posted April 7, 2010

    Perfect Insight

    I am a school teacher and have been around autism all of my life. My uncle has autism. 'Look Me In The Eye' gives you insight of the life of a boy and a man living with autism. John Elder Robison seems at the upper (higher functioning) end of the autism spectrum. Mr. Robison's way of telling his life story is phenomenal. I had trouble putting the book down. The insight that he gives about someone with autism is great. If you know anyone with autism or are in a profession that may have to deal with autism, this is definitely a book to read.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 10, 2009

    Highly Recommended

    This book is a quick read showing the internal struggles of someone with this disease as only someone on the "inside" can do. It was a great eye-opener for me, especially to hear what the author is thinking and the way information is "mis-translated" by his brain to our ears. I learned so much and it increased my patience when dealing with others. I applaud this man for writing about his experiences with wit and good humor and thank him for helping me to understand. If you are at all on the fence about reading this book, read it. You will be amazed.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2009

    Highly Recommend!

    I am a mother of four and I don't have much time to spend on leisurely reading. However, this book caught my interest from the moment I began reading. It is written in the most human, wonderful fashion. It just drew me in. I do have a compelling interest to read the book as I see many Asperger's like traits in my father's side of the family (although undiagnosed) and it was eye-opening to read into the world of someone who has Asberger's and has developed a successful career despite the sometimes socially crippling aspects of the diagnosis. FANTASTIC READ!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 14, 2009

    As entertaining as it is informative

    This book is touching, funny, and informative. I picked it up at Sam's Club because it looked better than the fiction on the next shelf -- I was not disappointed. An enjoyable read that also gave me insight into the ups and downs of life with Aspergers.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    If only more people would read this...

    I picked this up out of curiousity after having read Daniel Tammett's book. I was by far NOT disappointed!

    John very candidly writes about living with undiagnosed Asperger's, and what it was like being on the autistic spectrum, but not being aware of it. It wasn't until later in life that a good friend suggested he might by an Aspergian, and he finally had a diagnosis.

    This opened by eyes to those people in our lives who might be eccentric or different, and that they might not be that way just because they're weird. They might genuinely not understand the outside world as I understand it, and maybe just need some patience on my part for us to understand each other.

    If you have a child who you suspect or know to be an Aspergian...read this book! It's proof that just because your child, or really any person, might be a bit different, it doesn't mean they can't make their way in the world.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 5, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Must read for society.

    As a fan of author Augusten Burroughs’ memoir Running with Scissors, I’ve always had a fascination with learning more about him and his odd upbringing. In Running with Scissors he discusses his older brother who was a bit of an oddity as a child. Later in life it’s discovered that his brother, John Elder, has a form of autism better known as Asperger’s. Look Me In the Eye is John Elder’s memoir about his life with this disease and how he overcame its limitations to find success in life.

    Growing up in a childhood that would barely be considered habitable by most standards, John Elder Robinson traveled through childhood with a feeling of detachment and awkwardness. For all he knew, he just wanted to make the other kids like him. Unfortunately for him, however, the things that thought were completely acceptable happened to make the other kids view him as strange and awkward. Not letting this deter him, Robinson attempted to learn to change his behavior to suit his environment and view his social experiences objectively. These same analytical skills served him well later on in his life, as Robinson developed an aptitude for all things mechanical and eventually went on to design famous flaming guitars for KISS. After being diagnosed with Asperger’s at 40, Robinson looks back at his life with a new perspective and new insight into his life.

    As someone who has grown up with a learning disability, I can relate to Robison’s depiction of society and their views on individuals that are different from the “mainstream”. When I was a child, I found that at times I felt like I needed to respond to the social clues around me instead of instinctively being able to mesh with my peers. Additionally, I was amazed by the fantastic amount of emotion that Robison was able to convey in his writing, all with a diagnosis that apparently prevents him from being able to do just that. His descriptions of his despair, anger, and longing as a child, his pride and joy in succeeding in his professional life, and especially his amazement at finding love and beginning a family were all fantastic to read. It’s not that people with Asperger’s are incapable of feeling; the lack of the ability to express these emotions doesn’t mean that they don’t feel each and every one of them. Robison’s ability to tell us what he felt in all of these particular situations in amazing detail is testament to his awesome talents as a writer and the wonderful life he has lived thus far.

    The book is fabulously written, giving readers an insight into what it’s like for someone with Asperger’s. If you know someone who suffers from a form of autism I highly suggest giving this book a read; it might help you to understand what it’s like inside their mind, offering up a stronger relationship between you.

    Kimberly (Reflections of a Book Addict)

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  • Posted May 5, 2010

    Very Enlightening

    Was told about this book as school, since I work with students that have Autism. What he talks about how his feeling makes the whole Autism spectrum so different.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2010

    Very Good Book

    The book really helps you see things from another viewpoint! Very interesting esp. if you have a child with aspergers or know someone with it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2009

    Great Book

    This is a good read. I acutally listened to the CD. It was very informative and gave interesting insight into the mind of someone who has Asberger's Syndrome.

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  • Posted August 29, 2009

    Funny and well written

    John Elder really did a good job turning his life with Asperger's into a funny, touching story. A great read for anyone with a connection to Asperger's. Made me understand my husband and son better!

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  • Posted July 30, 2009

    Must read this brilliant memoir!!

    In his enthralling memoir, John Elder Robison provides us with a captivating glimpse into how his unique, gifted mind works. Raised by an alcoholic, abusive father and a mentally-ill mother, he overcomes the many challenges of growing up with Asperger's. Socially awkward, he learns how to correctly respond to comments made in conversations. Mr. Robison also shares many insightful stories which are both humorous and poignant. Blessed with a special ability to sharply focus and learn quickly, along with an extraordinary talent for mechanics, he makes many amazing contributions to the areas of music and electronics. Today, he runs a very successful and productive small business restoring old cars. Mr. Robison has magnificently-written a brilliant, enlightening book that I absolutely LOVED for many reasons. Finding out the details of his various electronics projects was really interesting. Learning about his thought process during a conversation was quite fascinating. I also really enjoyed reading narrative from a different perspective. I don't have a connection to Asperger's or Autism, but if I do meet someone, I'll certainly understand what life is like for them. This book also served as an excellent reminder for me to stop and think before I judge the actions or behavior of someone else. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS BOOK!

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  • Posted June 29, 2009

    Insightful and entertaining

    Perhaps the best message to convey in this review is "Don't judge a book by its cover." (Was I the only one who found the cover picture of the wincing 50s-era kid off-putting?) Of course, that's the message John Elder Robison conveys in his book. He wants us to understand that there is much more to him than awkward cocktail party conversation, which might prompt some to label him as just, well, odd. As a special education teacher who works with students with Aspergers (as well as other students with disabilities), I found this book insightful and entertaining. I've often wished I had a better understanding of the reasoning processes of some of my students; i.e. "I wonder what s/he was thinking when s/he did that." This book provides a glimpse how one person on the Autism spectrum navigates the social and emotional landmines that inevitably accompany friendship, dating, marriage, and employment.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 30, 2009

    Insight into how my son thinks as he grows

    Look Me In The Eye is an autobiographical jouney of one boy with Asperger's Syndrome. His life with AS as seen through his eyes. Amazing insight into how he thinks about school, friends, family, life, and work. This book will help me be a better person and Mom to my son with AS. It gives me great hope for his future as a man that is successful in all areas of life, and just happens to have Asperger's Syndromes.

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  • Posted March 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    You owe it to yourself to know about Aspergers

    I loved this book. There are a growing number of kids with Aspergers syndrome, and I have 3 close friends whose kids have it. This book (which is touching, hilarious and informative) gives you a personal insight about what it feels like to deal with Aspergers. It is an encouragement for those who have children with Aspergers who struggle with worry about what the future holds for their child. As a "normal" person, it makes me really think before holding a judgement about another human being. We need to be less quick to judge and more open to seeing and appreciating the differences between us and the beauty in our uniqueness. Undoubtably some of our greatest technological acheivements have been made by people who have the uncanny ability to focus that is true of those with Aspergers syndrome. A lovely read...

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