24 May 2016
Last night I went to Dano's in Mallow for the autism friendly shopping and met with the fantastic author of the Tony the Turtle books Valerie Sheehan.... We had a great chat and she gave me some fab ideas for my book. She also very generously gave me a gift of her 6 books. They are so wonderful. This lady knows autism. Not only knows it but understands it perfectly. I usually don't say that about anyone except parents but reading the books is like reading about our life. Because Valerie worked as a home tutor she just gets it. The books were designed to help parents of autistic kids originally but now they are loved by kids and parents both. They are a series of short little stories about Tony, a turtle who sees the world differently to others and how he copes with the help of his trusty visual schedule and flash cards.
Tony goes everywhere from shopping to a party, from swimming to the playground and there is even one dedicated to Tony trying new food. A battle we are all hugely familiar with!! She even explains the hard parts of his autism by showing how Tony flaps and becomes anxious or retreats to his shell when he is overwhelmed. The stories are completely relatable to all of us.
The books are beautifully illustrated and this turtle is seriously cute...and quirky just like all of our little turtles !! I think all ages in a family could benefit from having a read. It really helps explain what autism is like.The stories are short and funny and they rhyme too which makes it quick and easy to read. Take a look at her Facebook page or website if you all are interested. I'm so glad I did.
The pictures below will give you all an idea of what the books are like. There is a few snippets from my favourite one... Tony goes swimming. For me it's like looking at Kirsty with the armbands.!!
Like I said above this lady just gets it.