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Delightfully Different

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MIA LUNG ALREADY SHARES A SPECIAL BOND WITH HER MOTHER-even before she is born. As she studies Francesca from heaven, Mia realizes she has found the perfect mother. If only her transition from heaven to earth was as easy.

From the very beginning, Mia lives her life on earth knowing she is different, but not understanding why. With an extensive vocabulary and insight beyond her years, Mia is a beautiful spirit who soon develops extraordinary musical talents. But subtle signs soon emerge. Mia does not like to talk on the phone, walk barefoot on the grass, and cannot go to sleep without first lining up all her stuffed animals on her bed. Just as her family finally realizes that Mia is battling sensory sensitivity issues, she is bullied in fifth grade. After Mia's school counselor causes her to feel like the guilty one, Mia struggles to forgive those who, through their own ignorance, have hurt her.

"Delightfully Different" shares a poignant glimpse into the life and mind of a girl with Asperger's Syndrome who demonstrates through her compelling experiences that every life has a purpose and that being unique is what makes each of us special.

160 pages, Hardcover

First published November 8, 2010

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About the author

D.S. Walker

1 book22 followers
"Every time I hear of a child ending their life after others are cruel to them, my heart cries. My child experienced bullying a few years ago. At the time the books for middle school girls were all about being mean to be popular and other mothers were okay with their daughters being mean. This inspired me to write Delightfully Different to teach kindness and respect of differences. I truly believe we are all unique in some way, even if we do not admit it. It is time to change the climate in our schools to one of respect and kindness."

D. S. Walker, author of Delightfully Different, has been a registered nurse for over twenty-five years and has extensively studied sensory processing issues related to Asperger's Syndrome. She lives in Honolulu, Hawaii, with her husband and two children, where she enjoys spending time with family and friends, walking her dogs, and reading.

D. S. Walker writes the Word Press blog, Delightfully Different Life, about promoting kindess, offering forgiveness, and sharing gratitude. She is also a blogger for peace.

Contact her at dswalkerauthor.com, like her Facebook pages, Delightfully Different and Village of Support and follow her on Twitter @dswalkerauthor or at her alter ego @nouturnsinlife (it's Cal Lung's, the main character in her upcoming second novel, account.)

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Displaying 1 - 4 of 4 reviews
Profile Image for Trish Izzo.
279 reviews
August 25, 2011
Delightfully Different by D. S. Walker is just that, a delightful look into a world that is somewhat different from what most people know as typical. As it is described on the author’s website:

"Delightfully Different shares a poignant glimpse into the life and mind of a girl with Asperger’s Syndrome who demonstrates through her compelling experiences that every life has a purpose and that being unique is what makes each of us special."

Although this novel is listed on Amazon as being for appropriate for a reading age of 9-12, I think it will appeal to a much broader audience. It is as much the story of the mother who is trying to figure out how to understand and help her daughter as it is the story of the young girl who sees the world in her own unique way.

The book also delves into the complexities that arise when two people from different family backgrounds and cultures marry. Along the way, we encounter some of the fascinating aspects of life in Hawaii, including a competitive private school system that seems to rival that of New York!

There were several things I really appreciated about this book. One is how the story goes back and forth between Mia (the daughter) telling of her experiences growing up and Francesca (the mother) recalling what she thought and felt about what was happening. Another is how they each reflect on certain things that they later learned were specifically related to the way Mia’s sensory processing difference and Asperger’s Syndrome affect her perception of the world.

The topic of bullying is also addressed in this novel, and I found it to be from a very positive viewpoint. The mother is strong in her response to what is happening at her daughter’s school and the school does respond with increasing seriousness as she continues to advocate for the situation.

One other strength of this book is its contribution to the topic of Asperger’s in girls. There is a lot of attention given to how this disorder appears in boys, but not as much on how it can present differently with a girl. This novel is a solid contribution to the effort to raise awareness and understanding of this less-understood area.

All in all, Delightfully Different is a wonderful book that I highly recommend.
73 reviews
February 19, 2015
I thought this book did a great job of helping the reader/audience understand what it is like to live with Aspergers. Mia went many years dealing with sensory issue while she nor her family had any idea that was what was wrong with her. When her family started working towards helping her with this stuff, her life changed dramatically. This would be a good book for fourth or fifth grade to read.
Profile Image for Julia Stephenson.
Author 2 books
August 14, 2017
I like the fact that this story is not just about a girl with asperger's who has challenges. It actually has a plot, and resolution. Most books I have read with character's that have autism gives a whole biography about the lives of the character's, but do not provide a plot. They just touch upon a characters personal experiences during their lives that they had to overcome. This story was not a long biography. It's a story that explores Mia Lung's childhood experiences, and how she and her mother handled sleeping issues, loud noises, disagreements with her father, and bullying. It did not cover Mia Lung's older experiences, but it does reveal her a bit about her future in 2 short pages.
Profile Image for Amanda Bayley.
Author 4 books50 followers
April 11, 2017
I found this book to be both a quick light read and a nice glimpse into Asperger's. Having a daughter diagnosed with Asperger's the story hits close to home. I too find myself reflecting on her behaviors and seeing the small clues that have been sprinkled throughout her childhood. I love the frank clear language D.S. uses which makes this book ideal for adolescent readers.
When I read about Mia and Alisa being bullied by Morgan and her comrades I was so heartbroken and angry. No child should have to go through that and our kids are already dealing with so much. Again, this hits close to home. I have had severe bullying issues with both of my younger children. This book really ran my emotions through the wringer as a parent and rang so true.
I feel that Mia is such a positive role model for young girls and I look forward to reading this book with my daughter. I love stories like these that my daughter can relate to, making her feel not just different, but Delightfully Different!
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