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Brodey, a magazine editor from New York City, uses her experiences as the mother of a four-year-old boy diagnosed with sensory integration dysfunction and childhood depression as a springboard to assemble a series of essays from parents of special-needs children across the country. As Brodey notes, there are more than ten million children diagnosed with special needs in this country, a statistic that has created a vast audience for this type of book. The children profiled have diagnoses ranging from autism to selective mutism, from cerebral palsy to schizophrenia; their parents describe the roller-coaster ride of daily living, discuss whether or not to medicate and the issue of public embarrassment, and share both wonderful and horrific school experiences. Their accounts are heartbreakingly sad, unexpectedly funny, and always honest. Parents of special-needs kids often feel isolated and criticized; in these pages, they will find a wise and understanding community. As Brodey writes, these parents know that "[i]f you don't take advantage of life, it may take advantage of you." An original and helpful addition to the parenting shelf; strongly recommended for public libraries.