Jill's Reviews > Schuyler's Monster: A Father's Journey with His Wordless Daughter

Schuyler's Monster by Robert Rummel-Hudson
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's review
May 08, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: nonfiction, memoir, medical
Read in July, 2009

Not since Baby Catcher have I laughed out loud like this at a sad but funny memoir. I totally dug the author's sense of humor, the pacing and readability were fluid, and boy, what a great name that kid has. :)

It was also an interesting read because of the subject matter, and Rummel-Hudson balances the amount of "doctor speak" with lots of plain and simple explanations about Schuyler's condition. The part I found most fascinating about her condition was how she can say "mmmm" and "eee" but not "me".

Rummel-Hudson also does a good job of balancing foreshadowing with mystery. While sometimes it led to him repeating himself over and over (which tended to annoy me since I got it the first time), I was never entirely sure what would happen next. That definitely got me reading quickly through the first part where they're looking for a diagnosis. However, other times when he jumps back and forth it's confusing, like when he's talking about how he and Julie are confessing their infidelity to each other - I couldn't figure out when that happened. I was also glad for a happy-ish ending, though of course it is no ending at all, seeing as how Schuyler is still alive and well (to my knowledge).

Not that I expected any less, but Rummel-Hudson's questioning of God (and if there is a God) was also sometimes redundant and boring. I know these are important questions for someone to whom something bad has happened, but the "Please God, make me suffer not my daughter" got old after about the 10th repetition. Only his discussion of Atheist vs. Agnostic was truly interesting and different to me.

It's a good book if you've got some time and are interested in the human brain, children, special education, etc. I'm sure parents of children with this condition will find this book reassuring and helpful - I would.

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message 1: by Michael (new)

Michael This sounds very interesting. Will be interested to hear what you think....

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