Combining 36 pages of full illustrations with a first-hand account of living life as a child with autism, this book provides a humbling and inspiring look at how an autism spectrum disorder affects children.
Tracy likes to draw, make movies and play, just like other kids. She also has autism spectrum disorder. This means she processes many everyday situations differently, such as making friends. Over time, she’s learned tricks for communicating and coping when things are hard for her.
Follow along as Tracy gives a peek at what life is really like for someone living with autism and how she discovered life beyond this common disorder.
Children’s voices are rarely heard amid the complexity of modern medicine. That's why every story in the My Life Beyond series stems from the imagination and experience of a Mayo Clinic patient. The books were developed through collaboration between these patients, Mayo Clinic physicians and author-illustrator Hey Gee. Through this unique lens of inspiring real-life experiences, the series explores how children view illness, challenges and recovery.
One in fifty-four children in the U.S. are diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder—which includes autism, Asperger's syndrome, and childhood disintegrative disorder—but their experiences with this condition are rarely shared. With 36 pages of full illustrations, My Life Beyond Autism brings the reader into the world of a child diagnosed with autism to show how children with this condition view their disorder and work through common behavioral challenges.
The “My Life Beyond” graphic novel book series is published in collaboration with Fondation Ipsen.
About the Author
C. Ano was diagnosed with autism when he was two years old. Following his diagnosis he and his mom spent their days playing and attending his early intervention sessions with different types of therapists, including an occupational therapist, a speech therapist and a floor time therapist. Being present and engaged with the care team was important to his mom to ensure that each member of the therapy team was the right fit for C. Ano, working toward goals that were supportive of his growth and not restrictive. C. Ano is 13 years old now. He loves drawing and being creative and has started his own comic book series. His favorite author/illustrators are Jeff Kinney and Dave Pilkey. He also enjoys creating original movies with his toys and has created a one-act play. C. Ano is a talented public speaker and aspires to be a movie director or an author/illustrator. He lives in Minnesota with his parents, younger brother and two dogs.
Dr. Maja Katusic is a Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. She specializes in autism spectrum disorder and developmental delay, with a special focus on investigating risk factors and outcomes in autism spectrum disorder. Her clinical expertise includes comprehensive medical evaluation and management of children who present for a wide range of developmental or behavioral concerns, including autism spectrum disorder, developmental delay, intellectual disability, learning difficulties, ADHD, and disruptive behavior. When treating patients, Dr. Katusic is passionate about utilizing a patient and family centered approach to determine how to best serve the needs of her patients and their families. She was honored to work with the author on this unique project to help improve public understanding of autism spectrum disorder.
Grades 3-6. The Mayo Clinic’s My Life Beyond series (3 titles) takes the experiences of real kids and turns them into graphic-novel stories that both educate readers and offer support to those in similar situations. A short foreword, not much over a paragraph, by the child who inspired the story offers some context for the story to come, and high-level back matter best suited to caregivers or educators provides definitions of key medical terms and a note about the featured topic from the book’s medical editor. Autism reads like straightforward nonfiction, though C. Ano’s experiences with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are demonstrated through the fictional character of Tracy, who walks readers through some of the social, emotional, and sensory challenges she’s overcome, as well as her hobbies and interests. For all the titles, cartoon-style artwork relates the plot as well as the feelings and perceptions of the main characters. These stories will help readers understand others’ experiences and build empathy while learning basic facts about common diseases, disorders, and social struggles. — Booklist (February 1, 2022 (Vol. 118, No. 11))