In case you aren’t aware, Aaron Cully Drake’s debut novel Do You Think This Is Strange? is awesome.
I’m not the only one who thinks so. Last week it was short listed for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award and today it was long listed for one of Canada’s oldest literary awards, the Stephen Leacock Award for Humour, which awards the winning author a memorial medal and $15,000.
I promise you’ll like it. Read this post for links to reviews and retailers.
A ridiculously massive congratulations goes out to Aaron Cully Drake today, because his novel, Do You Think This Is Strange?, has been shortlisted for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award. This is a big deal, people! Huge.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—y’all should read this book.
I’ll make it easy: Here it is. Here’s the announcement. Click here to buy it. Or here. Here’s some Goodreads reviews. Here’s a fantastic review by Naomi at Consumed by Ink. Here’s a thing I wrote for All Lit Up. Now you have all the information you need. Let me know how much you like it.
I think I might start sharing quotes I like from books I love. So I’m going to try it out with one from Do You Think This Is Strange? by Aaron Cully Drake.
It’s autism … It’s not Voldemort.
This review is too good not to share. Find the original on Goodreads.
Do You Think This Is Strange? by Aaron Cully Drake
This is absolutely the best book I’ve read this year.
Every now and again there is a novel that can change the way you view the world. For me, the first book that did this was Minister Without Portfolio by Michael Winter and you can read my review of this book here. The second is Do You Think This Is Strange?. I could not stop reading this novel, nor could I stop laughing! Through humour and wonderful insight Aaron Cully Drake shows just how the daily life of an autistic teenager is, and it’s not so different than every other teenager.
We watch the story unfold through 17 year old Autistic Freddy, whose literal interpretation of the world not only gets him into awkward conversations but gets him into fights with bullies. His narration is humorous as well as insightful as Freddy is very aware of how horrible he is at conversation and after getting hospitalized by a group of kids kicking the crap out of him he takes steps to ensure it doesn’t happen again. He remembers everything that’s happened to him and everything he’s done that has or hasn’t gone well for him. Drake unfolds the narrative slowly and steadily through Freddy’s flashbacks as they either distract him from his daily life or consume him during his quiet thought filled moments at the end of each day and through the present ordeals Freddy faces. We see Freddy learn to deal with bullying, reconnect with an old friend, have his first kiss, and reconcile his life with his father.
While laughter kept me reading at the start, the weight of the turning point towards the end of the novel is what will stay with me. I don’t think I can ever look at another person without the compassion this book has shown me. We judge too quickly, categorizing personalities, traits, and habits into normal and not, and for what? The comfort that the ‘normal’ can stand on one side of the fence and label all the rest? This book shows how there really is no fence, no line, no difference. We’re all human, we all live the lives that are before us, come to terms with love and loss, and we’re all aware of this world in one way or another. This is a book I will keep on my top shelf along with Jane Austen, The Luminaries, Meditations, Three Day Road, and of course Minister Without Portfolio.
Turns out I’m not great with schedules—even those I set for myself. So here’s my Thursday post on Saturday.
Boxing has traditions that go back as far as ancient Rome and Greece but it wasn’t until the 1700s that rules were first introduced (eeeekkk!). These rules ushered in the modern era of boxing, with protective gear like gloves, timed rounds, and weight classes. The strength, speed, and quick footwork required to excel in boxing really shines in the tournament style, single elimination bouts at the Games. We’re about to have a rapid-fire tournament of books ourselves to see which title has the best, most precise monologue that will knock out the competition. —All Lit Up
Continue reading “Games with All Lit Up – Boxing”
Every day I’m thankful to be working in the publishing industry, especially with these great companies and the amazing people that helped bring these books into the world. Here we have it: our spring line up from Brindle & Glass Publishing and TouchWood Editions.