stuff you need to knowThe problem with Stuff You Need to Know; A Guide for Young Adults with Autism by Patricia Weaver is that it felt somewhat patronizing through the entire reading experience. While certainly all useful information, much of what is presented could be construed as common sense and is very likely to have been taught by their parents in most circumstances. As this book is said to speak to young adults with autism, I feel that it does not give them enough credit.

Now, there are some things–such as teaching one how to read the nutrition labels on the back of food–that I believe are more helpful as they are not things the typical person might know, but much of the book spends its time speaking in somewhat demeaning language as it tries to teach its ideas. The language frustratingly reminds me of someone who might use baby talk to speak to a ten year old. It just feels as though the bar of expectations is set a little low. The assumption seems to be that the kids reading this book will have no idea what is being discussed prior to reading the book, which I think is unrealistic.

Personally, this book seems much better suited toward kids than it does young adults. I specifically picture this being beneficial for someone around twelve more so than someone around sixteen years old. From what I can tell, this book might be useful for older kids in the event that their diagnosis is severe. In such cases, almost as it is with anyone and depending on the person, they might not be the sort to read often.

While the information is useful, I don’t know if the way it is presented was the best choice. I definitely think the language needs to be modified.

I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


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