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How to Be Autistic

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  61 ratings  ·  14 reviews
An urgent, funny, shocking, and impassioned memoir by the winner of the Spectrum Art Prize 2018, How To Be Autistic by Charlotte Amelia Poe presents the rarely shown point of view of someone living with autism.

Poe’s voice is confident, moving and often funny, as they reveal to us a very personal account of autism, mental illness, gender and sexual identity.

As we follow
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Paperback, 160 pages
Published September 19th 2019 by Myriad Editions
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Average rating 4.08  · 
Rating details
 ·  61 ratings  ·  14 reviews


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Jodie (jodie.loves.books)
Nov 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2019
This book is beautiful. It means so much to me and I think I’m really going to struggle to put my thoughts into words.

So firstly, I hardly ever read non-fiction so this was a little bit out of my comfort zone but Charlotte’s writing style is so raw and true and flows so well that I absolutely raced through this.

I’m currently 19 years old and I’m on a 2 year waiting list for an Asperger’s diagnosis. I’ve showed symptoms of Autism as well as having anxiety my whole life and yet I’ve only recently
...more
Laura Lamb
Sep 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I read this book in pretty much one sitting. It’s so damn powerful, and I don’t think words I write here could do it justice in any way. What I can say is this: I genuinely feel privileged to have been allowed inside Charlotte’s world and brain. I guarantee that anyone who reads this will not come out unchanged. Thank you, cosmic human, for surviving, for writing this book, and look, here you are, absolutely bloody thriving if you haven’t already, R E A D this book ...more
Contrary Reader
Sep 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is like The Bell Jar for autism. How to stand in someone else’s shoes and understand how they see and relate to the world. I applaud Charlotte for her honesty and openness- for baring herself to us. An important read that should go a long way towards promoting compassion and understanding. Why on Earth the Autism Quotient test isn’t used, I really don’t know
Andrea
Oct 07, 2019 rated it liked it
I was searching for more primary sources on autism and stumbled upon this little book (didn't read any reviews, just dove right in). As much as I appreciate the efforts of the author in creating this piece (and the video that helped them win an award and motivate them to write this), it's still too unstructured for me.

It's a memoir of a relatively short life (the author just a couple of years older than me) and a whole decade is completely skipped (so we don't learn anything about the years of
...more
Claire The Bristol Reader
Oct 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
How can neurotypical people learn about autism? How can autistic people get advice and support?

Well, neurotypical people talk, make programmes, and teach us about autism. It's ridiculous when you stop and think about it. Here, Charlotte writes about her experiences growing up, her diagnosis aged 21, and her triumph as an artist.

Thank you Charlotte for sharing your story and advice in such a refreshing and inspirational way.

This is a relatively short book - I wanted more, and I hope Charlotte
...more
Falynn - the TyGrammarSaurus Rex
Absolutely excellent memoir by an austist, describing their experience in their own words. So much of the writing about autistic people is by neurotypical people who, as much as they might study autism and as much as they might care, are always coming from the outside and with limited understanding of what it is like to live with autism. It's important we get more books like this one, where autistic people share what it is like for them to live in an NT world, and show how different autistic ...more
Alan Teder

Review of the Myriad Editions paperback edition (UK Sept 2019/N.Am. Jan. 2020)

Charlotte Amelia Poe won the inaugural Spectrum Art Prize (2018) for her video work How to be Autistic , the text of which is printed as the epigraph for this same-titled memoir.

Trivia and Link
The Spectrum Art Prize appears to be a biennial award as the 2nd Prize is expected to be announced in early 2020. Follow news about that here.
A.J.
Jan 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was incredible for me to read, I read three quarters of it in one sitting and didn't finish it there and then because I fell asleep. It's raw and powerful and it is the first book I read that made me feel not alone as an autistic person. It's a very intense read sometimes, and I cried more than once (am crying now) but I think that just serves to show what an incredible book it is.
Ellie
Nov 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Powerful and honest. This was a fantastic read and great representation of autism from a non-straight, white, male perspective! I only wish it was slightly more detailed and delved deeper into the writers experiences.
If you haven’t already, please do read it.
Andrew Bennett
Oct 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent and thought prevoking book

Really found this a book that helped to trigger memories back from when I was growing, though I was a bit luckier I think. Got my diagnosis in 2018 at the age of 54 when everything feel apart.
Jodie
Oct 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
I found this a rather empty book. Kind if like reading a teen MySpace blog entry. It doesn't really express much in the way of what autism is. It is more than anxiety and I feel this book could have done much more to explain that.
Nyx
Jan 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This was way too real. This book felt way too much like the inside of my head, and I would 100% recommend it to autistics who want to feel a little less alone, as well as neurotypical & other allistic folks who want to start to understand our experiences of the world.
Emma Bradford
Amazing and raw book, autism isn’t talked about enough. Especially by people with autism.
Fondantsurprise
Nov 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Excellent autobiography of an autistic young woman with high levels of anxiety.
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