Monday, April 11, 2011

Delightfully Different by D.S. Walker Book Review

Delightfully different is a charming story about Francesca Lung and her daughter Mia.

The narrative alternates between their voices.

Mia is a very bright and loving girl. Mia's description of how she perceived her early life are especially interesting to me as her personality reminded me a lot of my own son- ( the close bond to mom, the different anxieties )

She has Asperger's Syndrome. However it takes a while to discover this.

Her sensory sensitivities add a lot of difficulty to her growing years.

Its really not just the sensory sensitivities, but the lack of tolerance from the people that are around her.

This lack of tolerance ranges from, the preschool teacher who insists that 3 yr old Mia must have a bite of hamburger or stay in extended timeout –to the awful school counselor who dismisses her distress at being bullied.

Mia's difficulties in school - despite having no problems with academics – come to a head in fifth grade when a group of mean girls make it their mission to make her life miserable

This group of mean girls makes fun of her clothes and calls her names. The bullying seems planned, vicious and relentless

They send boys to Mia who pretend to like her and then say things like "Do you think I am stupid enough to like a weirdo?"
When Mia and Francesca talk to the school counselor( who seems like a relic from a couple of centuries ago ) he does everything wrong.

He makes Mia confront the head of the bullies , which of course only makes the cruelty escalate .

 He also suggests that Mia modify her own behavior to "fit in better". He suggests that her first assignment be to "smile more"( implying therefore that being bullied is really her own fault)

I don't want to give too much away but the story has a happy ending

The authors' website is here

I enjoyed reading Delightfully Different by Sue Walker very much and learned several things

The importance of understanding the sensory issues of the kids on our spectrum, the importance of always being on your child's side, the wonderful gifts that our kiddos on the spectrum have. And most of all  of making sure that anti-bullying safeguards are present and that our kids are safe in school

The post has been written  for the wonderful Danette's April edition of Best of Best Bloggers to be published on the 15th

DISCLOSURE: I received no payment for this book except for a free copy from the author- which I will also donate/give away. I will be interviewing the author at a later date 


Anonymous said...

And I thought the book I reviewed was scary! Really, I'm not sure I could bear reading the treatment of Mia. But, I will brave it on your claim of a happy ending! If you send the book to me, I will give it away, too. ;) Barbara

Mr. Daddy said...

I saw you post on face book K, and was intrigued. Now I think I will have to look into buying one...LOL

Bullying is such and ugly thing...

Rachel said...

It is so heartbreaking to read of others who have had to find a way to survive the cruelty of bullying.

It can be painful enough to be different. To be intentionally mocked is a trauma in its own right.

Thankful for the press this book is getting for this subject.

Floortime Lite Mama said...

Its heartbreaking isnt it- Rach and Mr Daddy
Dr Barb I will be happy to send it to you
could you email me your adress again at

Anonymous said...

True eloquence consists in saying all that is proper, and nothing more.

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