Following Ezra is an important book about raising a child who has autism. Not any child, not all children, not the full spectrum of kids, but one boy named Ezra. In my opinion, it does not presume to be more, to get political or to speak for anyone, though in many passages I find it telling my own feelings and experiences. It purely resonates. The book is full of simplicity and love, and I treasure that about it.
The hardest parts of the story made me nod my head, and several times I covered in gooseflesh, but I didn't cry until the end of the book as Ezra flourished through the experience of his bar mitzvah. I cried at the beauty, the love, the joy, the community, and I cried because I know that the end of any story like this is an arbitrary thing in a way; there are no real ends, but constantly overlapping spectrums of endings and beginnings in a complicated journey.
Is it a good book? There is simply no way for me to answer that without bias, anymore than I would feel comfortable having my own children in my class and grading their work. Following Ezra wasn't a book club assignment, it was an intimate opportunity for reflection on what motherhood means to me. I didn't read it like a book, I went through it like therapy. And I'm glad I did -- thank you for choosing Following Ezra, because I never would have, and now I am so happy to own a copy.
And in case I have not said it, thank you for letting me join book club. I am so grateful for what it adds to my life.