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on 26 July 2013
This book is just brilliant. I have two teenage children both with very complex autism, a daughter and a son. Over the years I have attempted to read some books - whether by 'experts' or other parents - on autism. The 'experts' books I have found not helpful as autism affects each person so uniquely and what the 'experts' say is often cold and difficult to personalise. I have found other parents books often quite depressing and have not managed to get passed the first few chapters. My experience with my children is my own journey - but my children are just the most amazing, courageous, beautiful people, and I kind of get tired seeing/reading negative things. These young people cope with so much, and this book by this young man is the first real honest insight into the thoughts and processes of autistic young people.

Sometimes there aren't any answers to the questions that are posed, but that in itself is an insight. I feel I know my children so well, but there are things written which my children wouldn't be able to explain to me, but are totally applicable to them. I read some of the questions/answers to my son; he kept jumping up and down saying 'That's how it is. That's how I feel.' At one point he was moved to tears and just said 'Oh wow'. My son would never have been able to tell me those things himself but to hear it voiced by another young man, who has a similar life journey to my son, helped him tremendously. So I would say this book is not only invaluable to parents and carers, teachers and support staff. But mostly, I would say it is for other young autistic people themselves, it gives them an opportunity to explain to you what's applicable, what's the same, and opens up discussion on how things are for them. It brings the young person comfort to know that they aren't the only person feeling this way - especially as another young person has written it down. As I write this my daughter has just started to read the book and I'm sure she will draw huge comfort from it also.

I cannot praise this book highly enough. It answers so many questions, some of which you may already know the answers, but also run deeper than that. My son is a rocker/flapper, echolaic, spins, food issues, very loud voice etc. And the explanation this young man gave to these questions opened up a new understanding, respect and appreciation. Yes I knew that for instance rocking and flapping is a sensory issue - but the way it is explained is a completely different level.

Sorry for waffling on - but I cannot recommend this highly enough. The forward is written perfectly - explaining autism simply, to the point, and in a way which really hits home just how hard life is for our youngsters due to their inner turmoils. As much as their brings some heartache there is also a lot of hope, and that is what I hold on to for my two.
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on 11 January 2014
I pre-ordered this book after searching for realistic books to try and understand my son's mind who has aspergers. While some of the chapters didn't relate to my son some did and did help me to really understand him but to give me a reason why he does and say what he does. Some days are so hard and you think he is deliberately doing what he does but this book shined a light on some of his most frustrating habits. No two children with aspergers are alike. My son at times cannot put words together to say what he means but have given him the book to read (he is 11).

He was able to tell me at parts of the books that "mum that's how I feel when I do that and couldn't explain in words to you why"

That comment alone was worth a huge amount to me as he is so frustrated at times trying to explain himself. I understand the book is a translation from another language but in its own way it has helped me translate to me my sons feelings in a way I can understand and that to me is worth 5 stars any day
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on 17 March 2016
This is a great book to be written by someone of any age and the fact that it is written by a 13 year old is amazing. The book reads like a FAQ of questions that anybody especially a parent of children with Autism or Asperger Syndrome have asked/shouted at their children about why they keep doing certain things. I bought this book after a particularly heated argument with my 8 year old. this book did help at the very least it told me that many of the things I questions e.g. "Why do you keep doing the same thing after I have told you a million times not to?". Yes all kids do this but is Autistic and AS children seem to take it ton another level. In between questions we are threated to a couple of short stories written by Naoki. these are great and remember the boy was only 13 when he wrote this book. It shows that creative writing is definitely Naoki's outlet and wrenches at my heart that such a creative and intelligent boy has so much problem communicating verbally or in person.

Two thing to remember about this book. Everyone with Autism or AS is different, but they do share many traits, so as insightful as Naoki's views are for himself might now apply to all children/people. However it does offer a first hand perspective which is otherwise unheard of. the other is the message/theme that Naoki is trying to get across. "DON'T GIVE UP ON US". Yes they might keep doing the same thing when they are told not to, but you still have to keep telling them not to till maybe on the ten million and one time it might get through to the child then they know it for life. As Naoki points out they might not look like it but they are learning slowly but surely they are. This book is a great insight into a great and creative mind that has been trapped inside a body with fewer outlets then are available to the rest of us, however with patience and understand many other children could be allowed to find their own outlet and unleash their ideas on the world.
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on 24 May 2014
This book is amazing, it explains and tries to answers the majority of questions I have had regarding my own daughter. Why she will only wear certain clothes, why she is emotionally attached and obsesses over objects, why her diet is so poor due to eating certain foods and most importantly why she runs off. And the anger and anxiety autism causes them. The hardest thing for an autistic child is living with the feeling of unacceptable and the upset they cause the family and friends due to their lack of social skills ADHD their struggles to fit in and cope with life on a daily basis. I want to buy this book in bucket loads and hand them to every person that interacts with my daughter, personally and educationally. The children we love are being let down by education as the reality of what their teachers learn in a classroom via text book is very very very different to the day to day struggles we endure and live with with as a family. The small minded people who judge us during public meltdowns and the teachers and assistants that just "don't get it" need to be made to read this,it should be a compulsory read in my opinion for all employees and volunteers in education that work with our special children xxxx thank you for letting me read you book, my relationship with my beautful misunderstood lady may now improve, as I can try to understand her world a little bit better. Xxx
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on 5 July 2013
A real insight into the mind of an autistic person. Beautifully written and a pleasure to read. You can take each section on its own but I read the whole thing straight through. His final story is incredibly touching. A book everyone who knows a person with autism should read.
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on 11 January 2014
This book is wonderful.

Its not expert facts and figures but actual viewpoints from somebody autistic. Somebody mostly non verbal at that.
Because of this it can give a huge insight into how one particulat autistic mind can work, but also it shows you how much is going on inside the quiet or silent exterior.

It also showcases how much wonder and beauty an autistic person can see in the world. Too much about autism focuses on the difficulties and not enough on the wonders and beauty it can have.

My son has autism, non verbal, and he is so unbelievably wonderful. This book gives insight to me on how some of his thought processes may be working, as well as showung the joy an autistic person is often experiencing.

Possitive infirmation about autism in this world NEEDS to be more common and this book is definately part of that.

One of the answers the author guves for why he does a particular perplexing activity was : "because its fun!"
That statement really sums up what some of this books message tells you.

If you are reading this review, then you have enough of an interest in autism to benefit from reading this book. Please get this book and read it.

Thanks
Alex
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 9 September 2014
I have read several books on autism and autism spectrum disorders, from the bare clinical facts to the deeply moving family biographies. This book was reviewed as being different from all of those as it was written by an autistic Japanese lad. This was, apparently, the first book written by someone with autism who explains what it is like and why people with autism behave as they do. I would dispute this latter fact as I am a big fan of Luke Jackson's book "Freaks, Geeks & Asperger's Syndrome" which provides an insiders viewpoint on living with high fuctioning autism.
Unfortunately this book did not live up to the hype. It is written in the form of questions and answers - such as "Why do Autistic people not like certain foods", "Why do you flap your hands when agitated?". Unfortunately, the wording of both the questions and answers irritated me. On the one hand there is the introduction written by David Mitchell complaining how people on the autistic spectrum are bundled together and have different behaviour patterns. On the other hand, the author is replying that we autistic people flap our hands because....... How do you know exactly what other people on the autistic spectrum feel any more than we do? Maybe this was a problem in the interpretation (originally written in Japanese) but it got my back up in the first few pages!
There were two main problems with the replies from this young lad. One was that they were often difficult to understand and rather woolly. I know that this is because the person writing them is struggling to express himself in the words of the "normal" world but I still found them rather difficult. The other was that much of what he said was very similar to other literature on the autism spectrum. Yes, it is good to have this confirmed by someone with autism but it wasn't the incredible insight that I was expecting from the blurb, introductions and reviews.
Am I judging this book too harshly? Quite possibly. The problem is that I read a lot of reviews and articles about this book before picking it up which led me to expect certain insights and "wow" moments which just weren't there in the book.
There were a couple of real gems in this book, particularly when the author is talking about the storage and retrieval of memories. This was an insight and made the book worth reading for me. Unfortunately this was a couple of short paragraphs and possibly raised more questions than it answered!
I personally feel that this was a classic case of the hype spoilling the book. It didn't live up to my expectations and I didn't particularly enjoy it or get very much from it. I think the fault lies more with the publicity than with the author. Who knows what I would have felt about this book had I approached it totally fresh with no expectations.
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THE REASON I JUMP is a hard book to review. Being one young boy's own experience of what living with autism is like, it feels somehow intrinsically wrong to put a star rating against it. Having said that, the people who choose to read it will more than likely do so for quite similar reasons; either because they have a child themselves who is autistic, or because they work with autistic children, or perhaps because they are curious and want to learn more. So, with that in mind, my rating is based on what I was hoping to gain from reading this book.
As a support worker, I decided to read it in the hope of education. What struck me instantly, is how honest and poignant it is. For a young boy to be supported in order to finally be able to express himself, providing others with an insight into how it is for him in his world, is truly inspiring. The style of the book makes it a very quick read - instead of there being chapters, it is set out as a set of questions with their corresponding answers. As another reviewer has stated, the answers that he provides continually reproach others to treat autistic people with understanding and respect. Patience is perhaps another characteristic that he asks of us.
I am certainly no expert in this area, but what I considered whilst reading THE REASON I JUMP, was just how subjective the answers are. Overall, you do manage to get a better insight into what a life with autism may be like, but I think there has to be some caution for newcomers to this area, so that they do not presume that what lies within the pages here would be the same for other sufferers.
As an introduction, THE REASON I JUMP is a brilliant place to start, and I can imagine that for parents with autistic children, this book would offer a welcome way into their child's inner world.
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on 13 August 2014
This book explains what it feels like to have an ASD - at least to the author - and I found it a revelation. It explodes so many of the myths that have grown up around autism, e.g. that those affected are not aware of their condition and can't empathise with the people around them. Reading it made me see that autism is really just another way of being, and that our assumptions about and treatment of autistic people, our attempts to make them fit our expected patterns of behaviour, must often make matters much worse.
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on 29 July 2013
This book is a revelation. i have a autistic son, and work with autistic kids. This book confirms what I'd always believed-and hoped-to be true, that there is so much going on in the heads and hearts of autistic people. They are, as David Mitchell says, superheroes. Every single day.
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