Look Me in the Eye|John Elder Robison
Look Me in the Eye : My Life with Asperger's
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"As sweet and funny and sad and true and heartfelt a memoir as one could find." --from the foreword by Augusten Burroughs

Ever since he was young, John Robison longed to connect with other people, but by the time he was a teenager, his odd habits--an inclination to blurt out non sequiturs, avoid eye contact, dismantle radios, and dig five-foot holes (and stick his younger brother, Augusten Burroughs, in them)--had earned him the label "social deviant." It was not until he was forty that he was diagnosed with a form of autism called Asperger's syndrome. That understanding transformed the way he saw himself--and the world. A born storyteller, Robison has written a moving, darkly funny memoir about a life that has taken him from developing exploding guitars for KISS to building a family of his own. It's a strange, sly, indelible account--sometimes alien yet always deeply human.


  • ISBN-13: 9780307396181
  • ISBN-10: 0307396185
  • Publisher: Crown Publishing Group (NY)
  • Publish Date: September 2008
  • Dimensions: 7.93 x 5.18 x 0.71 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.55 pounds
  • Page Count: 320

Look Me in the Eye

This startling memoir from first-time author Robison was a national bestseller in hardcover. Afflicted with the type of autism spectrum disorder known as Asperger's syndrome, Robison offers a gripping account of what it's like to be an outsider. As a kid, he struggles to make friends and lead a "normal" life, but hints of his condition surface early. An odd inability to make eye contact with others, a tendency to blurt out inappropriate statements and an uncanny facility for math and science point to a larger problem. Robison, however, doesn't discover the nature of his condition until he turns 40 and receives a diagnosis. The news, of course, changes his perspective on both the present and the past. Robison, who is the older brother of author Augusten Burroughs (Running with Scissors), shares his sibling's gift for storytelling, and the narrative is filled with incidents from their famously troubled childhood, including the author's habit of digging deep holes and putting Burroughs in them. Filled with humor and spirit, this memoir isn't a victim's tale, but the story of a man who has come to grips with his personal history and found a comfortable place in life. (As it turns out, Robison eventually put his science skills to use by creating trick guitars—the exploding kind—for KISS.) This well-crafted, no-frills account will leave readers wanting more from the author.

A reading group guide is included in the book.