Saturday’s Book: “Thinking in Pictures: My Life with Autism” by Temple Grandin

One of my first thoughts when I began listening to this book was: “Really? I call MY blog VISUALISING ideas?!!  She visualizes in a most amazing way”!

The descriptions of the way Prof. Grandin can flip through the images in her brain and see how her designs will look and operate and foresees the problems in advance is an example of one of the fascinating parts of this book. In fact, the parts that I was riveted to were the personal ones, where she shares her own personal experiences of how she learned (with the help of others) to excel at what she could do and live with what she was unable to do.

Yet this book isn’t a memoir, which I actually thought it was. There are parts which are absolute academic reading material and go into scientific (often repetitive) detail. The level of detail in which she discussed medication, for example, was too much for me. I wasn’t treating the book as a textbook. I WAS interested in the information related to education, language development and thought but I listened to in small pieces, as it was so like a textbook.

In fact, though I really recommend the book, I don’t recommend listening to it as an audiobook. Don’t get me wrong, Grandin isn’t the narrator – she says herself that her own voice lacks the intonation most speakers use.  The reader is wonderful! There are some repetitive passages which could easily be skimmed over if I had been holding the printed version.

I’m glad I finally had a chance to read the book, I had heard of her many times and seen her TED Talk.

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