#GuestPost by Ido Kedar #Author of In Two Worlds ~ Shedding Light on Non Speaking #Autism

Today I have a guest post from Ido Kedar, a non speaking autistic young man who has written two books.

This is Ido’s second book, In Two Worlds.  

Seven-year-old Anthony has autism. He flaps his hands. He makes strange noises. He can’t speak or otherwise communicate his thoughts. Treatments, therapies, and theories about his condition define his daily existence. Yet Anthony isn’t improving much. Year after year his remedial lessons drone on. Anthony gets older and taller, but his speech remains elusive and his school lessons never advance. Life seems to be passing him by. Until one day, everything changes.
In Two Worlds is a compelling tale, rich with unforgettable characters who are navigating their way through the multitude of theories about autism that for decades have dictated the lives of thousands of children and their families. This debut work of fiction sheds light on the inner and outer lives of children with nonspeaking autism, and on their two worlds. As one of the only works of fiction written by a person with non-speaking autism, it offers readers an unprecedented insider’s point-of-view into autism and life in silence, and it does so with warmth, humor and a wickedly sharp intellect.

Book links ~ Amazon UK | Amazon US

Now over to Ido…

Imagine that you can’t speak, handwrite or gesture because your body can’t move the way you want it to due to a breakdown in communication between your thoughts and motor system. You are born this way, so no one knows you are smart. Your body betrays you through erratic or impulsive movementsthat convince theprofessional experts that you lack understanding of language or even awareness of the world around you. You can’t tell anyone the truth about who you are; that you are present, smart but trapped.

This is the experience of Anthony, the hero of In Two Worlds. He is a boy, trapped by autism, unable to communicate, and living in two distinct realities. He lives in his mind, isolated from others, intoxicated by overwhelming sensory experiences, and entertained by jokes he can only share with himself. It is a solitary, sensual life. Nearly hallucinatory visual input at times makes his inner world an escapist wonderland. His other world is less enticing, inundated in therapies and remedial education with specialists who have no idea that the strange boy is a thinking boy. This is monotony and tedium caused by good intentions.

My life has many parallels to Anthony’s, though he is not me. I am real and he is not. But I too can’t speak. I too move erratically. I too was thought to be an empty head when I was young. And I too made a breakthrough when I learned to touch letters to communicate. I lived an escapist life as a boy. My inner autismland offering a reprieve from the pointless boredom of simplistic drills that mocked my intelligence and proved my stupidity.

But once I learned to control my hand to type out my thoughts at the age of seven, my world opened. Gradually I made my way into the world of neurotypical education, my ideas liberated from their prison within my mind. I observed my lonely status in school. I was the only nonspeaking autistic in regular education. My autistic peers stayed in remedial class. No one bothered to inquire if they too might possess the ability of typing out letters with one finger to express ideas. The assumption was that I was an anomaly.

I began a journal to express my feelings at this tough time in my life. I was twelve years old. For three years I wrote and my journal developed into an insider’s view and explanation of nonspeaking autism. This became my memoir and first book, Ido in Autismland. It has had a bigger impact than I could have ever hoped. Parents have used my book as their path to communication with their children. Teachers have rethought theories, and autistic people have read that they are not alone.

In Two Worlds is my second book, but unlike Ido in Autismland, it is fictional. It feels real so people ask me if it is my story. It is the story of autism as seen through my autistic eyes, but it is fiction, nonetheless. I waited a long time to communicate. A long time before my first conversation. But I was seven. Still young. My protagonist, Anthony, waited until he was sixteen! Imagine going all the way to high school age with not one conversation ever, with no one, not even your own family knowing you had a thinking mind.

My experiences made me write true experiences for Anthony. I understand the people who populate his life and the way he is treated. I understand his sorrow, anger and budding hope. I understand the obstacles he faces when most of the professionals dismiss his communication as fantasy and fallacy.

The journey of Anthony tells the truth about autism, and because it is fiction it is all the more powerful. Through fiction you ride the schoolbus with Anthony, seeing streams of light and color with him. Through fiction you hear his thoughts, when no one else knows he has any. Through fiction you overcome the most basic human need with him, to connect with others and to share ideas. Anthony teaches that not talking is not the same as not thinking. He shines a light on the most maligned and misunderstood people, those who have historically been called “dumb,” because words don’t tumble from their mouths.

In Two Worlds is a journey into the life of a person who lives intelligently inside and stupidly outside. It is an insider’s perspective into nonspeaking autism and this is something wholly new to literature.

About the Author

Imagine being diagnosed with a disease that relegates you to the sidelines of life. You are seen as different, maybe even dumb. You are unable to communicate with others and feel trapped in a body that fails you every step of the way. Even those who are with you don’t realize what you are capable of. You could easily grow depressed and remain a silenced outcast.  Well, one young man is fighting back. He has found a way to overcome so many obstacles and to share an inspiring story on behalf of those with severe autism — and for all who cannot speak for themselves.

Meet Ido Kedar, a phenomenal 23-year-old Californian who, through the saving grace of technology and perseverance, now has a voice in his life and is using it to lobby for huge changes. Through the use of an iPad and other devices, Ido has learned to communicate with others despite not being able to speak. He has written two books and serves as a board member for a non-profit group that advocates on behalf of all non-speaking humans.

“Ido’s story is one of triumph of the indomitable human spirit,” says Tracy Kedar, his mom, who is also a mental health therapist specializing in helping non-speaking autistic individuals. “He is an inspiration to anyone who has struggled.”

Ido is believed to have written the first  novel by a non-speaking autistic person, In Two Worlds, which was praised by Kirkus Reviews and Publishers Weekly Booklife Prize. He also is the author of a book at age 15, Ido In Autsimland, a stunning memoir that brings tears of frustration and joy from every reader. Completely silenced for the first seven years of his life – and now still without the ability to speak save for the use of technology – Ido remains quiet no more. His human interest story also provides insights on parenting, education, and how the experts fail to treat those who can’t speak for themselves.

“I hope to have people outside the autism community discover my books,” says Ido. “I believe they have the potential to shed light on the most misunderstood people – non-speakers – who are trapped by their own bodies. In reviews, readers compare my novel to other major works that exposed prejudice and ultimately led to societal change. Perhaps society is ready for a breakthrough.”

You can find out more on Ido Kedar’s website

Missing You by Harlan Coben ~ Will Kat Get A Second Chance? #CrimeFiction #Thriller #Suspense

Author: Harlan Coben

Published: April 2014 by Orion

Category: Thriller, Suspense, Crime Fiction, Book Review

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It’s a profile, like all the others on the online dating site. But as NYPD Detective Kat Donovan focuses on the accompanying picture, she feels her whole world explode, as emotions she’s ignored for decades come crashing down on her. Staring back at her is her ex-fiancé Jeff, the man who shattered her heart and who she hasn’t seen in 18 years.

Two devastating events that happened around the same time, eighteen years previously, had a powerful effect on NYPD Detective Kat Donovan. Her father was murdered and her fiancé broke off their relationship without explanation. She hasn’t had another relationship since that meant anything to her. Kat’s friend Stacy bought her a subscription for a dating website, something she knew Kat would never do on her own. Feeling slightly obligated Kat trawls through the profiles and is stunned to see a picture of her ex fiancé on one of the profiles. Eventually, feeling she has nothing to lose, Kat makes contact.

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Threads: A Depression Era Tale by Charlotte Whitney #BookReview for #RBRT #HistFic #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Charlotte Whitney

Kindle Edition

Category: Historical Fiction, The Great Depression, Book Review

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It’s a boring, hardscrabble life for three sisters growing up on a Michigan farm in the throes of the Great Depression. But, when young Nellie, digging for pirate treasure, discovers the tiny blue-black hand of a dead baby, rumors begin to fly. Narrated by Nellie and her two older sisters, the story follows the girls as they encounter a patchwork of threatening circumstances and take it upon themselves to solve the mystery.

The Great Depression began after the market crashed in late 1929 and drastically affected the world’s economy. Threads tells the story of a farming family in Michigan and is narrated by the three daughters. Flora, the eldest at seventeen. Irene, the middle sister is eleven and Nellie, the youngest, just seven.

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ Plus One by Elizabeth Fama ~ An Alternate Reality #Audiobook #YAFiction #BookReview

Throwback Thursday this week is a novel dealing with the aftermath of the flu pandemic of 1918—hopefully not a sign of things to come! Plus One is narrated by Julia Whelan and was released in 2015.

My Thoughts

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The Memory by Judith Barrow ~ Irene’s Story #FamilySaga #Fiction @judithbarrow77 #FridayReads @honno

Author: Judith Barrow 

Published: March 2020 by Honno Press

Category: Family Saga, Dual Timeline, Fiction, Book Review

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Today has been a long time coming. Irene sits at her mother’s side waiting for the right moment, for the point at which she will know she is doing the right thing by Rose.

Rose was Irene’s little sister, an unwanted embarrassment to their mother Lilian but a treasure to Irene. Rose died thirty years ago, when she was eight, and nobody has talked about the circumstances of her death since. But Irene knows what she saw. Over the course of 24 hours their moving and tragic story is revealed – a story of love and duty, betrayal and loss – as Irene rediscovers the past and finds hope for the future.

The Memory tells Irene’s story from her perspective, alternating between then and now. Beginning in the now, the story gives an immediate sense of Irene’s life. It’s not at all what she envisioned for herself all those years ago, as she struggles with her full time role as a carer for her mother, with all that entails when someone is incapable of doing anything for themselves.

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More Mini #BookReviews ~ Books 5 and 6 of the Jackman and Evans series by Joy Ellis #CrimeFiction #PoliceProcedural #FridayReads

Just a quick general recap…

Detective Inspector Rowan Jackman leads the team. He’s a private person from an affluent background, well respected and liked, and is good at motivating his team. His passion is horses. Detective Sergeant Marie Evans is a widow who lost her husband in a motorbike accident. She’s able to assess situations and people with accuracy and is nicknamed Super Mario by her colleagues. Marie’s passion is motorbikes.

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None The Wiser (Detective Mark Turpin Book 1) by @RachelAmphlett ~ What if some secrets were never meant to stay buried? #CrimeFiction #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Rachel Amphlett

Published: March 2020 by Saxon Publishing

Category: Crime Fiction, Mystery, Suspense, Police Procedural, Book Review

None the Wiser is the first book in a new murder mystery series from USA Today bestselling author Rachel Amphlett.

What if some secrets were never meant to stay buried?

When a parish priest is brutally murdered in cold blood, a rural community is left in shock – and fear.

New to the Vale of the White Horse, Detective Sergeant Mark Turpin discovers the murder bears the hallmark of a vicious killer who shows no remorse for his victim, and leaves no trace behind.

As Father Seamus Carter tries to find a semblance of calm through prayer, guilt and disgust eat away at him. As he struggled to write his sermon, he wondered if sharing his own weaknesses would be punishment enough. The events of the previous week had reopened an old wound and he is a frightened man. He has cause to be…he doesn’t know it but these are his final few moments.

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ BLACK To Reality by Russell Blake #Hardboiled #Noir Fiction

BLACK To Reality was published in 2014. I loved listening to the series on audio and have the final one to look forward to in hardcopy as it wasn’t released as an audiobook.

Renee at It’s Book Talk began this meme as a way to share old favourites, as well as books that have been waiting on the ‘to be read’ pile for however long, and are finally getting an airing.

My Thoughts

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#GuestPost from Gila Green #Author of #YA Novel No Entry @green_gila #Environmental

It’s a pleasure today to welcome Gila Green with a guest post. Gila has written a young adult, environmental fiction novel titled No Entry. Here’s what the book is about…

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Call Me Star Girl by Louise Beech ~ Stirring up secrets can be deadly… #Contemporary #Psychological @LouiseWriter

Author: Louise Beech

Published: April 2019 by Orenda Books

Category: Psychological, Contemporary Fiction, Book Review

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Tonight is the night for secrets…

Pregnant Victoria Valbon was brutally murdered in an alley three weeks ago – and her killer hasn’t been caught.

Tonight is Stella McKeever’s final radio show. The theme is secrets. You tell her yours, and she’ll share some of hers.

I’ve read so many positive reviews and praise for Louise Beech’s writing that I have several of her, yet unread, books on my shelves. Call Me Star Girl is my first experience and I have to say the praise wasn’t exaggerated. The story exudes tension and atmosphere, with subtle twists and sudden surprises heightening the feelings of uncertainty and suspense.

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