Review – Autism is….

Autism is…. – Ymkje Wideman-van der Laan


The first in a series of books that the author wrote to explain various things to her autistic grandson, of whom she had assumed the care of. This first book is her pre-emptive book for explaining to her grandon, Logan, what autism is.

The book is written as a rhyming story, and follows Logan overhearing his grandmother talking to someone else about autism. He then asks her what autism is and the rest of the book is her explaining autism to him.

Overall it’s quite a positive book, focusing on the different things that Logan does and feels with a nice balance between his strengths and his difficulties. It describes things like meltdowns in a very practical way – using behaviours to illustrate rather than trying to describe any internal feelings. It creates the outline of a boy who is different to his friends, but that this is okay.

So now you know, nothing’s amiss.

Because that’s just what autism is.

It’s a very simple message of acceptance, illustrated with equally simple but effective cartoon illustrations. By not over-complicating anything, Wideman-van der Laan ensures that the book is accessible. Would be a nice addition to a school story box for Key Stage 1 or for a young child that is being introduced to their own or a sibling’s or friend’s autism.

Worth reading?

If you have younger children who will benefit from it, yes. Upper age limit is probably around aged 7 I think.

Value for money?

Currently available on Kindle Unlimited, or it’s £5-£6.50 for a print copy or £4.39 for a digital copy – so quite reasonable. Great value for primary schools especially.


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