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One of those rare occasions when a stunning literary talent and an important subject come together. As many as one in five children face the challenge of growing up with a behavioral disorder. For Beth Kephart’s son, it was “pervasive developmental disorder”—a broad spectrum of difficulties, including autistic features. As the author and her husband discover, all it really means is that their son Jeremy is “different . . . different in a million wonderful ways, and also different in ways that need our help.” In intimate, incandescent prose, Beth Kephart shares the painful and inspiring experience of loving a child whose “special needs” bring tremendous frustration and incalculable rewards. With the help of passionate parental involvement and the kindness of a few open hearts, Jeremy slowly re-emerges from a self-imposed silence broken only by the echoing of others’ words, obsessive play rituals, pacing and running in circles, and a sheer terror of strangers. Triumphantly, he begins to engage the…[more]