The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism

( 74 )

Overview

“One of the most remarkable books I’ve ever read. It’s truly moving, eye-opening, incredibly vivid.”—Jon Stewart, The Daily Show

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
NPR • The Wall Street Journal • Bloomberg Businessweek • Bookish

FINALIST FOR THE BOOKS FOR A BETTER LIFE FIRST BOOK AWARD • NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

You’ve never read a book like The Reason I ...

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The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism

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Overview

“One of the most remarkable books I’ve ever read. It’s truly moving, eye-opening, incredibly vivid.”—Jon Stewart, The Daily Show

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
NPR • The Wall Street Journal • Bloomberg Businessweek • Bookish

FINALIST FOR THE BOOKS FOR A BETTER LIFE FIRST BOOK AWARD • NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

You’ve never read a book like The Reason I Jump. Written by Naoki Higashida, a very smart, very self-aware, and very charming thirteen-year-old boy with autism, it is a one-of-a-kind memoir that demonstrates how an autistic mind thinks, feels, perceives, and responds in ways few of us can imagine. Parents and family members who never thought they could get inside the head of their autistic loved one at last have a way to break through to the curious, subtle, and complex life within.
 
Using an alphabet grid to painstakingly construct words, sentences, and thoughts that he is unable to speak out loud, Naoki answers even the most delicate questions that people want to know. Questions such as: “Why do people with autism talk so loudly and weirdly?” “Why do you line up your toy cars and blocks?” “Why don’t you make eye contact when you’re talking?” and “What’s the reason you jump?” (Naoki’s answer: “When I’m jumping, it’s as if my feelings are going upward to the sky.”) With disarming honesty and a generous heart, Naoki shares his unique point of view on not only autism but life itself. His insights—into the mystery of words, the wonders of laughter, and the elusiveness of memory—are so startling, so strange, and so powerful that you will never look at the world the same way again.
 
In his introduction, bestselling novelist David Mitchell writes that Naoki’s words allowed him to feel, for the first time, as if his own autistic child was explaining what was happening in his mind. “It is no exaggeration to say that The Reason I Jump allowed me to round a corner in our relationship.” This translation was a labor of love by David and his wife, KA Yoshida, so they’d be able to share that feeling with friends, the wider autism community, and beyond. Naoki’s book, in its beauty, truthfulness, and simplicity, is a gift to be shared.

Praise for The Reason I Jump
 
“A rare road map into the world of severe autism . . . [Higashida’s] insights . . . unquestionably give those of us whose children have autism just a little more patience, allowing us to recognize the beauty in ‘odd’ behaviors where perhaps we saw none.”People (3-1/2 stars)

“Small but profound . . . [Higashida’s] startling, moving insights offer a rare look inside the autistic mind.”Parade

“This is an intimate book, one that brings readers right into an autistic mind—what it’s like without boundaries of time, why cues and prompts are necessary, and why it’s so impossible to hold someone else’s hand. Of course, there’s a wide range of behavior here; that’s why ‘on the spectrum’ has become such a popular phrase. But by listening to this voice, we can understand its echoes.”Chicago Tribune (Editor’s Choice)

“Amazing times a million.”—Whoopi Goldberg, People

The Reason I Jump is a Rosetta stone. . . . This book takes about ninety minutes to read, and it will stretch your vision of what it is to be human.”—Andrew Solomon, The Times (London)

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
09/23/2013
Just thirteen years old, effectively unable to speak , Higashida used a special alphabet grid to compose this slim, informative book, which provides an unprecedented look into the mind of a young person with autism. Constructed in a series of questions and answers, interspersed with short fictional stories, Higashida gallantly attempts to explain why he and others with autism do the things they do, which often confound caretakers and onlookers. He bares his heart by putting forth the questions people ask, or long to ask—such as "why do you talk so loudly and weirdly?" and "do you have a sense of time?"—providing insight into the life of someone with autism. Higashida often achieves a clarity and wisdom that is surprising for such a young person, like when he suggests that autism should be viewed as simply another personality type. Other times the reader is reminded of his age, when he earnestly pleads on behalf of himself and others with autism for understanding and patience. The result is a mixture of invaluable anecdotal information, practical advice and whimsical self-expression. This is imperative for Higashida because, as he so elegantly puts it, "being able to share what I think allows me to understand that I, too, exist in this world as a human being." (Sept.)
From the Publisher
“One of the most remarkable books I’ve ever read. It’s truly moving, eye-opening, incredibly vivid.”—Jon Stewart, The Daily Show

“A rare road map into the world of severe autism . . . [Higashida’s] insights . . . unquestionably give those of us whose children have autism just a little more patience, allowing us to recognize the beauty in ‘odd’ behaviors where perhaps we saw none.”People 3-1/2 stars

“Small but profound . . . [Higashida’s] startling, moving insights offer a rare look inside the autistic mind.”Parade

“Please don’t assume that The Reason I Jump is just another book for the crowded autism shelf. . . . This is an intimate book, one that brings readers right into an autistic mind—what it’s like without boundaries of time, why cues and prompts are necessary, and why it’s so impossible to hold someone else’s hand. Of course, there’s a wide range of behavior here; that’s why ‘on the spectrum’ has become such a popular phrase. But by listening to this voice, we can understand its echoes.”Chicago Tribune Editor’s Choice

“Amazing times a million.”—Whoopi Goldberg, People

“Surely one of the most remarkable books yet to be featured in these pages . . . With about one in 88 children identified with an autism spectrum disorder, and family, friends, and educators hungry for information, this inspiring book’s continued success seems inevitable.”Publishers Weekly

The Reason I Jump is a Rosetta stone. . . . I had to keep reminding myself that the author was a thirteen-year-old boy when he wrote this . . . because the freshness of voice coexists with so much wisdom. This book takes about ninety minutes to read, and it will stretch your vision of what it is to be human.”—Andrew Solomon, The Times U.K.
 
“We have our received ideas, we believe they correspond roughly to the way things are, then a book comes along that simply blows all this so-called knowledge out of the water. This is one of them. . . . An entry into another world.”Daily Mail U.K.

“Every page dismantles another preconception about autism. . . . Once you understand how Higashida managed to write this book, you lose your heart to him.”New Statesman U.K.
 
“Astonishing. The Reason I Jump builds one of the strongest bridges yet constructed between the world of autism and the neurotypical world. . . . There are many more questions I’d like to ask Naoki, but the first words I’d say to him are ‘thank you.’”The Sunday Times U.K.
 
“This is a guide to what it feels like to be autistic. . . . In Mitchell and Yoshida’s translation, [Higashida] comes across as a thoughtful writer with a lucid simplicity that is both childlike and lyrical. . . . Higashida is living proof of something we should all remember: in every autistic child, however cut off and distant they may outwardly seem, there resides a warm, beating heart.”Financial Times U.K.
 
“Higashida’s child’s-eye view of autism is as much a winsome work of the imagination as it is a user’s manual for parents, carers and teachers. . . . This book gives us autism from the inside, as we have never seen it. . . . [Higashida] offers readers eloquent access into an almost entirely unknown world.”The Independent U.K.
 
“Like millions of parents confronted with autism, Mitchell and his wife found themselves searching for answers and finding few that were satisfactory. Help, when it arrived, came not from some body of research but from the writings of a Japanese schoolboy, Naoki Higashida. The Reason I Jump . . . is a book that acts like a door to another logic, explaining why an autistic child might flap his hands in front of his face, disappear suddenly from home—or jump.”The Telegraph U.K.

“This is a wonderful book. I defy anyone not to be captivated, charmed and uplifted by it.”Evening Standard London

“Whether or not you have experienced raising a child who is autistic . . . this little book, which packs immeasurable honesty and truth into its pages, will simply detonate any illusions, assumptions, and conclusions you've made about the condition. . . . What Higashida has done by communicating his reality is to offer carers a way forward and offer teachers new ways of working with the children, and thus opening up and expanding the possibilities for autistic kids to feel less alone. All that in less than 200 pages? What an accomplishment.”The Herald Dublin
 
The Reason I Jump is an enlightening, touching and heart-wrenching read. Naoki asks for our patience and compassion—after reading his words, it’s impossible to deny that request.”Yorkshire Post U.K.

The Reason I Jump is a wise, beautiful, intimate and courageous explanation of autism as it is lived every day by one remarkable boy. Naoki Higashida takes us ‘behind the mirror’—his testimony should be read by parents, teachers, siblings, friends, and anybody who knows and loves an autistic person. I only wish I’d had this book to defend myself when I was Naoki’s age.”—Tim Page, author of Parallel Play and professor of journalism and music at the University of Southern California

“[Higashida] illuminates his autism from within. . . . Anyone struggling to understand autism will be grateful for the book and translation.”Kirkus Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
A 13-year-old Japanese author illuminates his autism from within, making a connection with those who find the condition frustrating, mysterious or impenetrable. For the renowned novelist David Mitchell, who provides the introduction and collaborated on the translation, this book is "a revelatory godsend." The father of a young autistic son, Mitchell had never felt well-served by books written by others who provided care for the autistic or by more scholarly analyses of the condition. The book takes the form of a series of straightforward questions followed by answers that are typically no longer than a couple of paragraphs or pages. "We really badly want you to understand what's going on inside our hearts and minds," writes Higashida. "And basically, my feelings are pretty much the same as yours." He describes the difficulty of expressing through words what the brain wants to say, the challenge of focusing and ordering experience, the obsessiveness of repetition, the comfort found in actions that others might find odd, and the frustration of being the source of others' frustration. "We don't obsess over certain things because we like it, or because we want to," he writes. "People with autism obsess over certain things because we'd go crazy if we didn't. By performing whatever action it is, we feel a bit soothed and calmed down." In addition to demystifying his condition and translating his experience, the author intersperses some short fables and a concluding short story that shows remarkable empathy and imagination, as the death of an autistic boy leaves a family transformed. "[Higashida] says that he aspires to be a writer, but it's obvious to me that he already is one," writes Mitchell. Anyone struggling to understand autism will be grateful for the book and translation.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780812994865
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/27/2013
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 968
  • Product dimensions: 5.22 (w) x 7.42 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Naoki Higashida was born in 1992 and was diagnosed with autism at the age of five. He graduated from high school in 2011 and lives in Kimitsu, Japan. He is an advocate, motivational speaker, and the author of several books of fiction and nonfiction.
 
KA Yoshida was born in Yamaguchi, Japan, majored in English poetry at Notre Dame Seishin University.
 
David Mitchell is the bestselling and critically acclaimed author of The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, Black Swan Green, Cloud Atlas, Number9Dream, and Ghostwritten.
 
KA Yoshida and David Mitchell live in Ireland with their two children.

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Read an Excerpt

Introduction
David Mitchell

The thirteen-year-old author of this book invites you, his reader, to imagine a daily life in which your faculty of speech is taken away. Explaining that you’re hungry, or tired, or in pain, is now as beyond your powers as a chat with a friend. I’d like to push the thought-experiment a little further. Now imagine that after you lose your ability to communicate, the editor-in-residence who orders your thoughts walks out without notice. The chances are that you never knew this mind-editor existed, but now that he or she has gone, you realize too late how the editor allowed your mind to function for all these years. A dam-burst of ideas, memories, impulses and thoughts is cascading over you, unstoppably. Your editor controlled this flow, diverting the vast majority away, and recommending just a tiny number for your conscious consideration. But now you’re on your own.

Now your mind is a room where twenty radios, all tuned to different stations, are blaring out voices and music. The radios have no off-switches or volume controls, the room you’re in has no door or window, and relief will come only when you’re too exhausted to stay awake. To make matters worse, another hitherto unrecognized editor has just quit without notice—your editor of the senses. Suddenly sensory input from your environment is flooding in too, unfiltered in quality and overwhelming in quantity. Colors and patterns swim and clamor for your attention. The fabric softener in your sweater smells as strong as air freshener fired up your nostrils. Your comfy jeans are now as scratchy as steel wool. Your vestibular and proprioceptive senses are also out of kilter, so the floor keeps tilting like a ferry in heavy seas, and you’re no longer sure where your hands and feet are in relation to the rest of you. You can feel the plates of your skull, plus your facial muscles and your jaw; your head feels trapped inside a motorcycle helmet three sizes too small which may or may not explain why the air conditioner is as deafening as an electric drill, but your father—who’s right here in front of you—sounds as if he’s speaking to you from a cellphone, on a train going through lots of short tunnels, in fluent Cantonese. You are no longer able to comprehend your mother tongue, or any tongue: from now on, all languages will be foreign languages. Even your sense of time has gone, rendering you unable to distinguish between a minute and an hour, as if you’ve been entombed in an Emily Dickinson poem about eternity, or locked into a time-bending SF film. Poems and films, however, come to an end, whereas this is your new ongoing reality. Autism is a lifelong condition.

Thanks for sticking to the end, though the real end, for most of us, would involve sedation and being forcibly hospitalized, and what happens next it’s better not to speculate. Yet for those people born onto the autistic spectrum, this unedited, unfiltered and scary-as-all-hell reality is home. The functions that genetics bestows on the rest of us—the “editors”—as a birthright, people with autism must spend their lives learning how to simulate. It is an intellectual and emotional task of Herculean, Sisyphean and Titanic proportions, and if the autistic people who undertake it aren’t heroes, then I don’t know what heroism is, never mind that the heroes have no choice. Sentience itself is not so much a fact to be taken for granted, but a brickby-brick, self-built construct requiring constant maintenance. As if this wasn’t a tall enough order, people with autism must survive in an outside world where “special needs” is playground slang for “retarded,” where melt-downs and panic attacks are viewed as tantrums, where disability allowance claimants are assumed by many to be welfare scroungers, and where British foreign policy can be described as “autistic” by a French minister. (M. Lellouche apologized later, explaining that he never dreamed that the adjective could have caused offense. I don’t doubt it.)

Autism is no cakewalk for the child’s parents or carers either, and raising an autistic son or daughter is no job for the fainthearted—in fact, faintheartedness is doomed by the fi rst niggling doubt that there’s Something Not Quite Right about your sixteen-month-old. On Diagnosis Day, a child psychologist hands down the verdict with a worn-smooth truism about your son still being the same little guy that he was before this life-redefining news was confirmed. Then you run the gauntlet of other people’s reactions: “It’s just so sad”; “What, so he’s going to be like Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man?”; “I hope you’re not going to take this so-called ‘diagnosis’ lying down!”; and my favorite, “Yes, well, I told my pediatrician where to go stick his MMR jabs.” Your first contacts with most support agencies will put the last nails in the coffin of faintheartedness, and graft onto you a layer of scar tissue and cynicism as thick as rhino hide. There are gifted and resourceful people working in autism support, but with depressing regularity government policy appears to be about Band-Aids and fig leaves, and not about realizing the potential of children with special needs and helping them become long-term net contributors to society. The scant silver lining is that medical theory is no longer blaming your wife for causing the autism by being a “Refrigerator Mother” as it did not so long ago (Refrigerator Fathers were unavailable for comment) and that you don’t live in a society where people with autism are believed to be witches or devils and get treated accordingly.

Where to turn to next? Books. (You’ll have started already, because the first reaction of friends and family desperate to help is to send clippings, Web links and literature, however tangential to your own situation.) Special Needs publishing is a jungle. Many How to Help Your Autistic Child manuals have a doctrinaire spin, with generous helpings of © and ™. They may contain usable ideas, but reading them can feel depressingly like being asked to join a political party or a church. The more academic texts are denser, more cross-referenced and rich in pedagogy and abbreviations. Of course it’s good that academics are researching the field, but often the gap between the theory and what’s unraveling on your kitchen floor is too wide to bridge.

Another category is the more confessional memoir, usually written by a parent, describing the impact of autism on the family and sometimes the positive effect of an unorthodox treatment. These memoirs are media-friendly and raise the profile of autism in the marketplace of worthy causes, but I have found their practical use to be limited, and in fairness they usually aren’t written to be useful. Every autistic person exhibits his or her own variation of the condition—autism is more like retina patterns than measles—and the more unorthodox the treatment for one child, the less likely it is to help another (mine, for example).

A fourth category of autism book is the “autism autobiography” written by insiders on the autistic spectrum, the most famous example being Thinking in Pictures by Temple Grandin. For sure, these books are often illuminating, but almost by definition they tend to be written by adults who have already worked things out, and they couldn’t help me where I needed help most: to understand why my three-year-old was banging his head against the floor; or flapping his fingers in front of his eyes at high speed; or suffering from skin so sensitive that he couldn’t sit or lie down; or howling with grief for forty-five minutes when the Pingu DVD was too scratched for the DVD player to read it. My reading provided theories, angles, anecdotes and guesses about these challenges, but without reasons all I could do was look on, helplessly.

One day my wife received a remarkable book she had ordered from Japan called The Reason I Jump. Its author, Naoki Higashida, was born in 1992 and was still in junior high school when the book was published. Naoki’s autism is severe enough to make spoken communication pretty much impossible, even now. But thanks to an ambitious teacher and his own persistence, he learned to spell out words directly onto an alphabet grid. A Japanese alphabet grid is a table of the basic forty Japanese hiragana letters, and its English counterpart is a copy of the qwerty keyboard, drawn onto a card and laminated. Naoki communicates by pointing to the letters on these grids to spell out whole words, which a helper at his side then transcribes. These words build up into sentences, paragraphs and entire books. “Extras” around the side of the grids include numbers, punctuation, and the words finished, yes and no. (Although Naoki can also write and blog directly onto a computer via its keyboard, he finds the lower-tech alphabet grid a “steadier handrail” as it offers fewer distractions and helps him to focus.) Even in primary school this method enabled him to communicate with others, and compose poems and story books, but it was his explanations about why children with autism do what they do that were, literally, the answers that we had been waiting for. Composed by a writer still with one foot in childhood, and whose autism was at least as challenging and life-altering as our son’s, The Reason I Jump was a revelatory godsend. Reading it felt as if, for the first time, our own son was talking to us about what was happening inside his head, through Naoki’s words.

The book goes much further than providing information, however: it offers up proof that locked inside the helpless-seeming autistic body is a mind as curious, subtle and complex as yours, as mine, as anyone’s. During the 24/7 grind of being a carer, it’s all too easy to forget the fact that the person you’re doing so much for is, and is obliged to be, more resourceful than you in many respects. As the months turn into years “forgetting” can become “disbelieving,” and this lack of faith makes both the carer and the cared-for vulnerable to negativities. Naoki Higashida’s gift is to restore faith: by demonstrating intellectual acuity and spiritual curiosity; by analysis of his environment and his condition; and by a puckish sense of humor and a drive to write fiction. We’re not talking signs or hints of these mental propensities: they’re already here, in the book which (I hope) you’re about to read. If that weren’t enough, The Reason I Jump unwittingly discredits the doomiest item of received wisdom about autism—that people with autism are antisocial loners who lack empathy with others. Naoki Higashida reiterates repeatedly that no, he values the company of other people very much. But because communication is so fraught with problems, a person with autism tends to end up alone in a corner, where people then see him or her and think, Aha, classic sign of autism, that. Similarly, if people with autism are oblivious to other people’s feelings, how could Naoki testify that the most unendurable aspect of autism is the knowledge that he makes other people stressed out and depressed? How could he write a story (entitled “I’m Right Here” and included at the end of the book) boasting characters who display a range of emotions and a plot designed to tweak the tear glands? Like all storytelling mammals, Naoki is anticipating his audience’s emotions and manipulating them. That is empathy. The conclusion is that both emotional poverty and an aversion to company are not symptoms of autism but consequences of autism, its harsh lockdown on self-expression and society’s near-pristine ignorance about what’s happening inside autistic heads.

For me, all the above is transformative, life-enhancing knowledge. When you know that your kid wants to speak with you, when you know that he’s taking in his surroundings every bit as attentively as your nonautistic daughter, whatever the evidence to the contrary, then you can be ten times more patient, willing, understanding and communicative; and ten times better able to help his development. It is no exaggeration to say that The Reason I Jump allowed me to round a corner in our relationship with our son. Naoki Higashida’s writing administered the kick I needed to stop feeling sorry for myself, and start thinking how much tougher life was for my son, and what I could do to make it less tough. Virtuous spirals are as wonderful in special-needs parenting as anywhere else: your expectations for your child are raised; your stamina to get through the rocky patches is strengthened; and your child senses this, and responds. My wife began to work on an informal translation of Naoki’s book into English so that our son’s other carers and tutors could read it, as well as a few friends who also have sons and daughters with autism in our corner of Ireland. But after discovering through Web groups that other expat Japanese mothers of children with autism were frustrated by the lack of a translation into English, we began to wonder if there might not be a much wider audience for Naoki Higashida. This English translation of The Reason I Jump is the result.

The author is not a guru, and if the answers to a few of the questions may seem a little sparse, remember he was only thirteen when he wrote them. Even when he can’t provide a short, straight answer—such as to the question “Why do you like lining up your toys so obsessively?”—what he has to say is still worthwhile. Naoki Higashida has continued to write, keeps a nearly daily blog, has become well known in autism advocacy circles and has been featured regularly in the Japanese Big Issue. He says that he aspires to be a writer, but it’s obvious to me that he already is one—an honest, modest, thoughtful writer, who has won over enormous odds and transported first-hand knowledge from the severely autistic mind into the wider world; a process as taxing for him as, say, the act of carrying water in cupped palms across a bustling Times Square or Piccadilly Circus would be to you or me. The three characters used for the word “autism” in Japanese signify “self,” “shut” and “illness.” My imagination converts these characters into a prisoner locked up and forgotten inside a solitary confinement cell waiting for someone, anyone, to realize he or she is in there. The Reason I Jump knocks out a brick in the wall.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 74 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(42)

4 Star

(12)

3 Star

(9)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(8)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 74 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    As a psychologist I can honestly say The Reason I Jump could be

    As a psychologist I can honestly say The Reason I Jump could be a text book for understanding Autism.

    18 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2013

    Don't read this book in English unless a better translation come

    Don't read this book in English unless a better translation comes out. Even then only read it if it can be proven that it wasn't written through facilitated communication. At this point that remains unclear to me.

    Anon's 1-star review from 10/4/13 reflected my thoughts exactly... "The level of “insight” articulated would be beyond even the normal thirteen year old’s developmental abilities." This book reads like it was written by a middle-aged man (named David Mitchell), especially the last half of the book.

    The 13 year-old portrayed in this book is essentially the classic “noble savage” from romantic literature. He has ASD and appears limited to the outside world, yet has achieved a level of self-actualization never reached by many adults. Here are a few examples:

    Q39 Why do you like being in the water?
    We just want to go back. To the distant, distant past. To a primeval era, in fact, before human beings even existed. All people with autism feel the same about this one, I reckon…. We are a different kind of human, born with primeval senses.

    Q58 What are your thoughts on autism itself?
    We are more like travelers from the distant, distant past. And if, by our being here, we could help the people of the world remember what truly matters for the Earth, that would give us a quiet pleasure.

    I'm assuming there is a grain of truth contributing to the original concept for this book. And I would have loved to hear that part of the story.

    For now, If you want to read an authentic first-hand account by someone with autism, read Temple Grandin’s "Thinking in Pictures." If you want to remind yourself what an insightful, articulate 13 year-old sounds like, re-read Anne Frank's diary. If you want to read an adult without autism’s educated guess about the inner thoughts of someone with ASD, read "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime." If you want to support a fraudulent translator and a potentially fraudulent method (if facilitated communication was used), then read "The Reason I Jump."

    16 out of 25 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 29, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    Naoki is a brave man and his book The Reason I Jump is an amazin

    Naoki is a brave man and his book The Reason I Jump is an amazing look into the mind of an Autistic person. The writing really lets you know what it is like in his mind. I was totally captivated and learned so much. Five Stars.

    15 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 7, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    The Reason I jump is unlike any book I have ever read. The book

    The Reason I jump is unlike any book I have ever read. The book gives a clear glimpse into how the Autistic mind works. I loved the details. There wasn’t one boring page in the entire book.

    13 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2013

    In response to " Don't read this book in English"

    I am truly sorry that you must not be capable of wrapping your mind around this young boy's precious and very personal thoughts. My daughter just turned four and she too, has an extremely high intellect. If I have heard her say it once, I've heard it a thousand times over: "Momma I wanna go HOME." (Mind you, we WILL be in our house) there are many more incidents but personally they are not of your judgemental concern. And yes I am aware of who Temple Grandin is but you forget that no two people are exact...and that goes for Autism, too. Please work a little harder on having not only an open mind, but an open HEART, as well..

    10 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2013

    I have never returned a book I bought but I did return this one

    I have never returned a book I bought but I did return this one after reading two chapters. I didn’t realize the book was written supposedly through facilitated communication, a highly controversial and often criticized method. The book would have us believe that the writer, a thirteen year old child with autism, was fully capable of forming and expressing complex and introspective thoughts. The level of “insight” articulated would be beyond even the normal thirteen year old’s developmental abilities. There are many other books that truly help parents and others understand autism. Leave this one at the book store.

    8 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 23, 2013

    Just what I was expecting

    Our son is 9 years old and mildly autistic. I purchased The Reason I Jump in order to get a glimpse inside a autistic child's mind. Naoki's ability to express himself is a gift to parents. Although my son's answers would be different, Naoki's answers give me food for thought and a place to start the conversation with my son.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 10, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    The Reason I Jump is a fascinating book written by a fascinating

    The Reason I Jump is a fascinating book written by a fascinating young man: Naoki Higashida. Naoki suffers from Autism. But he doesn’t let that stop him from living a full and rewarding life. The Reason I Jump is his story in his own words. It is a fascinating book and very informative. Naoki is so brave to share his story.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 21, 2013

    Interesting.

    As the mother of an adult autistic son I thought this book might give me further insight into his world. It really did not tell me more than other books I have read by autistic people. Still very interesting though.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 2, 2013

    The "sea change" of parenting has been led by parents

    The "sea change" of parenting has been led by parents of children with autism. Thankfully, parents of children with autism include people who are able to affect the "sea change." People who have been diagnosed with "Autism," and their parents and caregivers are in a position to advance civilization. Listen to them. Thanks to increasing assistive technology, we will, within the next decade, go beyond "alphabet boards" etc., and tap in to the advanced cognition that exceptional human beings that _____ (insert your child's name here) will contribute.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2013

    Not a Keeper

    Started with a lot of anticipation which steadily diminished as I continued To read. It isn't a bad read just not the fascinating book that it had been presented as being. I didn't feel as if I learned anything groundbreaking. The author seems to have self awareness and ability to communicate his feelings

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2013

    sample is useless

    9 pages of a melo dramatic forward, a waste of bandwidth.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2013

    Eh...

    At times heartwarming while at others mundane. Remembering that an autistic child wrote this kept me reading but did little to garner anything more than the two-stars I give it. Higashida is impressive and inspiring but unfortunately this book is not.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2013

    Beauty

    I found every page helped me better understand my son. I laughed, teared up and had many a "ah ha" moments. Thank you for helping us.
    This book is a must read if your child or loved one is autistic!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 20, 2013

    Good book

    Helpful in understanding autism as explained by one who has it. Every little bit of information we get about autism helps to understand this difficult condition!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2014

    Lily

    Im not stupid. Get out.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2014

    Zixzans spirit

    Waits one last time

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  • Posted April 4, 2014

    Excellent incite into a young Autistic boys mind

    This book is very thought provoking. If Autism has touched your life you should read it. If nothing else it will help you deal with the world that's coming up. Many children are growing up with Autism and will find
    a place in society. A little understanding of their world will help you realize there real potential.

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  • Posted March 28, 2014

    love it

    I am a person on the autism spectrum and I can relate to the person who wrote this book. the book is well written and i absolutely love it

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2014

    Get a pink ipad

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