Zi71bFS9nQHnivtvUJquhejTHIQ The Story Factory Reading Zone: Just received- Joe, the only boy in the world

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Just received- Joe, the only boy in the world

Yesterday, I received a wonderful gift as a thankyou for some voluntary work (how did they know I like reading, lol). The book is Joe, the only boy in the world by Michael Blastland.
Here's what the blurb says:
A little boy stops on a slide and sings, oblivious to the queue snapping behind him. In a hardware store, he plonks himself on a display toilet before crowds of shoppers and wees. He thumps crying babies. Joe is ten and mentally disabled. He lives in a bubble of misunderstanding and occasional calamity. He's funny, fascinating, maddening.
This remarkable book tells Joe's story, but it also argues something audacious: that until you know Joe's life, you can't fully understand your own; that his misadventures teach us 'nothing less than the people-ness of people
Through his strangeness, Joe makes normaity luminous: how we make sense of others, what we mean by guilt and innocence, how we perceive our surroundings. All of which invites an outrageous question: for of Joe sets humanity in such sharp relife, how is he still a part of it? The author who asks is Joe's father. Here is the answer
I'm always interested in books which show us a different way of viewing the world, whether they're in different cultures, or just experience life in another way. As the blurb of this book says, I too believe that the can be used to gain a deeper understanding of our own lives and social norms. I'm looking forward to reading this book and hoping that it reveals Joe to be not mentally disabled, but a person with a mental disability which sheds light on us all.

Since I read a lot of books about people with special needs, I'm considering making a book-box of them. If you're interested (and are a member of BookCrossing) please let me know and I'll put you on a list for if this ever happens (or for this book if I decide against the idea for finacial reasons)
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