Review of Look me in the eye by John Elder Robinson

Review of Look me in the eye by John Elder Robinson
Rating ***

This book is a memoir written by the brother of the author of Running With Scissors, Augusten Burroughs. Unlike most people who have read Look me in the eye, I have not read Augusten's book, though I probably will read it now. I give a lot of credit to people who see one author have a lot of success with a book and then decide that they have something to add and can do just as good a job. Frank McCourt's brother wrote his own memoir after Angela'a Ashesbecame a best seller. I haven't read it, but the book has done well. Some of the soldiers covered in Mark Bowden's Blackhawk Down wrote their own book. One of the boat captains in the story A Perfect Stormhas written a couple of successful books. A lot of good books don't make it because they can't find an audience. So there's nothing wrong with riding the coattails of another book.

There have been a lot of memoir's written about dysfunctional families. The Robison family certainly falls into this category. But this book deals more with the author's struggle to make it in a world while dealing with Asperger's syndrome, a mild form of autism.

Anyone who knows someone with this syndrome should read this book. There is a lot of insight that can be gained from learning from someone who has dealt with it and continues to deal with Asperger's. The author states that he could easily have turned inward and might have even become more savant-like had he not met a few people in his life that challenged him to deal with his problems in communication and social interactions. While he had difficulties as a result of Asperger's, his problems were not all that far removed from the problems we all face.

There's a lot of humor in the book. I enjoyed reading about his time working with KISS and his work with sound and effects. But the book is lacking in conflict. The dysfunctional family is covered only briefly. The recent memoir Crazy For The Stormby Norman Ollestad had a plane crash as a major conflict. I tend to be drawn more to these types of stories.

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