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67 of 68 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A glimpse inside an extraordinary mind
Daniel Tammet has Savant syndrome, a rare form of Asperger's which gives him the ability to remember long sequences of numbers (seeing the numbers as having various colours and textures) and to be able to learn to speak a language from scratch within a week.

The book isn't just an autobiography. Tammet explains incredibly eloquently about how he experiences...
Published on 2 Mar 2007 by Sarah Durston

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Understand another world
Very insightful book, always interesting to understand how someone quite different sees the world. Also makes you realise that any differences are not so big after all.

The prose is a little dry - in some places a bit abrupt - but I think that adds to the feeling that the book has not been too dressed up or crafted - it feels like a genuine reflection of...
Published on 9 Dec 2009 by K. Dalton


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67 of 68 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A glimpse inside an extraordinary mind, 2 Mar 2007
By 
Sarah Durston (London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Daniel Tammet has Savant syndrome, a rare form of Asperger's which gives him the ability to remember long sequences of numbers (seeing the numbers as having various colours and textures) and to be able to learn to speak a language from scratch within a week.

The book isn't just an autobiography. Tammet explains incredibly eloquently about how he experiences numbers and words, giving the reader a glimpse inside an extraordinary mind.

Tammets explores his childhood experinces, the pain of being an outsider at school, how he discovered he was gay and found a loving relationship and most importantly how he experinces the world. I particularly enjoyed the chapters about the teaching assignment he took in Lithuania and learning Lithuanian, something which most of us would find daunting even without autism.

The writing is quite sparce, lacking flowery description, as you might expect being written by someone with such an analytical brain. However there are parts which are still very touching. Tammet has had to teach himself how to function socially, how to read body language and verbal clues. I think if nothing else, this book has taught me that idioms such as 'pull up a chair' or 'feeling under the weather' can be incredibly confusing for people who take language so literally.

A really intersting read. Recommended.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A glimpse inside an extraordinary mind, 10 Sep 2006
By 
Sarah Durston (London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Daniel Tammet has Savant syndrome, a rare form of Asperger's which gives him the ability to remember long sequences of numbers (seeing the numbers as having various colours and textures) and to be able to learn to speak a language from scratch within a week.

The book isn't just an autobiography. Tammet explains incredibly eloquently about how he experiences numbers and words, giving the reader a glimpse inside an extraordinary mind.

Tammets explores his childhood experinces, the pain of being an outsider at school, how he discovered he was gay and found a loving relationship and most importantly how he experinces the world. I particularly enjoyed the chapters about the teaching assignment he took in Lithuania and learning Lithuanian, something which most of us would find daunting even without autism.

The writing is quite sparce, lacking flowery description, as you might expect being written by someone with such an analytical brain. However there are parts which are still very touching. Tammet has had to teach himself how to function socially, how to read body language and verbal clues. I think if nothing else, this book has taught me that idioms such as 'pull up a chair' or 'feeling under the weather' can be incredibly confusing for people who take language so literally.

A really interesting read. Recommended.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A unique mind, a unique mathematician, 31 July 2007
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Maths is the only true gift that i was born with and so was drawn to this book; it immediately made me feel slightly insecure because this man is an inspiration. Daniel, a Savant, that now leads a normal life, has achieved so much in his young life that it puts a lump in your throat.
He writes with perfect clarity about setting his pi record, meeting the real rain man 'Kim Peek', chatting with David Letterman live on American T.V and also an insight on how he can do unbelievable mathematical calculations in a matter of seconds.
A very humble man, he explains how he found it very hard to find employment and in his own words mentions that autistic individuals can bring 'reliability, honesty, a high level of accuracy, considerable attention to detail and a good knowledge of various facts and figures' to an organisation.
I found page 12 very useful because it gives you an idiot proof guide on how to remember all the prime numbers up to 100, which i passed on to my son, who also loves Maths. My son (10) was absolutely mesmerized with some of the things, that i explained to him, that Daniel could do.
There is a chapter that i thought i may feel uncomfortable reading (i will let you figure out which one) but Daniel writes it in such a tender way that you feel charmed that he shares his 'open book' approach to his life.
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56 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Born on a Blue Day - Daniel Tammet, 21 July 2006
By 
I urge everyone to buy this book straight away!!

Daniel explains his experiences with Asperger's and Savant Syndrome openly and honestly.

You really feel like you know Daniel personally by the time you get to the end!

He has an incredible mind and has acheived far more than I ever will. His abillity to learn foreign languages in a week is astounding!

He also has his own website called Optimnem where he has set up tutorials to allow people to learn languages in his own unique way.

I'll be starting that as soon as I get paid!!

Absolutely fantastic book, could not put it down.

Christine Pearson
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A tale of two conditions, 6 July 2009
By 
Stewart M (Victoria, Australia) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
In a book which is both simple to read and often surprisingly frank Daniel Tammet describes what is like to have two conditions - either of which would normally be enough to isolate him from many aspects of society - Asperger and Savant Syndromes.
The intention of the book seems to be to give a window on the life of a person living with an autism spectrum disorder, so that the rest of society can have a better understanding of the these conditions. In this regard the book both succeeds and fails. The life of the author as a person with Asperger's Syndrome is clearly described - and some of the sections where he speaks of his isolation at school and the lack of connection with his parents make for painful reading.
The second aspect of the book, the Savant Syndrome, can be baffling. The author visualizes numbers as having shape, texture and colour and as a result is able to do extraordinary mental calculations. This section is so unfamiliar to me (and I assume most people) that it becomes simply descriptive of a process that remains utterly incomprehensible. This is not a criticism of the way the book is written - it is just an observation about some of the content. Knowing that the author sees numbers as lines does not help me understand how he uses the lines to carry out calculations. The mental processes seem foreign - fascinating but ultimately inaccessible.

This is an honest and readable account of a real person with both remarkable talents and significant limitations. It has the considerable advantage of being an account of a real person and this separates from the well know "Curious Incident of the Dog...........". I think this book should be read by anybody who works with, knows or are related to people who have an ASD, and especially with Asperger's Syndrome. We will come to have a better understanding of this condition only if people are willing to hear about it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Understand another world, 9 Dec 2009
By 
K. Dalton (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Very insightful book, always interesting to understand how someone quite different sees the world. Also makes you realise that any differences are not so big after all.

The prose is a little dry - in some places a bit abrupt - but I think that adds to the feeling that the book has not been too dressed up or crafted - it feels like a genuine reflection of Daniel's thoughts/ experiences. Don't want that to sound too harsh though - in other places there is rich detail and very descriptive explanations of how numbers, language etc form in his mind - again, leaves you feeling closer to his world.

Overall a good read.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 10 Aug 2006
By 
Sarah Kay (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This book is a must read for anyone who wants to understand the human mind a little better. It is a very personal tale, but reading this book made me reevaluate how I judge people when I first meet them. Daniel's warmth and intelligence comes through as he tells his life story, but equally it is plain that he would struggle to communicate these qualities at first face to face.

A really fascinating book that may change the way you see the world a little.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A glimpse inside an extraordinary mind, 10 Sep 2006
By 
Sarah Durston (London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Daniel Tammet has Savant syndrome, a rare form of Asperger's which gives him the ability to remember long sequences of numbers (seeing the numbers as having various colours and textures) and to be able to learn to speak a language from scratch within a week.

The book isn't just an autobiography. Tammet explains incredibly eloquently about how he experiences numbers and words, giving the reader a glimpse inside an extraordinary mind.

Tammets explores his childhood experinces, the pain of being an outsider at school, how he discovered he was gay and found a loving relationship and most importantly how he experinces the world. I particularly enjoyed the chapters about the teaching assignment he took in Lithuania and learning Lithuanian, something which most of us would find daunting even without autism.

The writing is quite sparce, lacking flowery description, as you might expect being written by someone with such an analytical brain. However there are parts which are still very touching. Tammet has had to teach himself how to function socially, how to read body language and verbal clues. I think if nothing else, this book has taught me that idioms such as 'pull up a chair' or 'feeling under the weather' can be incredibly confusing for people who take language so literally.

A really intersting read. Recommended.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Read! Great Book, 10 May 2007
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I'm one of those people that really wants to read but seems to spend a little too much time infront of the internet, or TV! So I thought get your self a book.

Shamfully enough I really liked the cover of this book and I though "hmmm whats this about"...Anyway when the book arrived (after looking into what the book was about obviously) I started reading it and got through about 50 pages in half hour, which was out of this world for me. It was so interested from the start, having the ability to see directly into Daniel's mind was great. He describes his condition in such an interesting way to really help you visualise how he lives each day.

I'd say buy this book if you want a good read and are even slightly interested in autism, although don't be mis-guided by thinking it is a deep insight in to dealing with autism, it is more a story about a boy, who grows up to be an amazing man.

Great Stuff.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Open Your Eyes Open Your Mind, 2 Aug 2006
By 
M. Ward "SANCTUM" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
The most startling thing which comes through from Daniel Tammets book is not his astonishing savant abilities (which have already been documented elsewhere). It is his generosity of spirit and courage in overcoming his shyness and other problems to propogate his message that difference is not necessarily disabilty. It is particularly touching how his attempts to overcome his problems in travelling and meeting people have resulted in him being able to do more and more - he has in effect "felt the fear and done it anyway". I intend to take up one of his language courses as soon as I can. Heartily recommended!
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Born On a Blue Day by Daniel Tammet
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