Book Description

From Publishers Weekly Starred Review. The daughter of literary agent Lynn Nesbit and the late theater drama critic Richard Gilman crafts a beautifully sinuous and intensely literary celebration of the exceptional, unconventional child. Her son, Benjamin, was born when she and her academic husband, Richard, were in graduate school at Yale, where she was still working on her dissertation on the Romantic English poet William Wordsworth. As 'Benj' grew older and failed to hit the usual milestones of children his age, exhibiting brilliant but 'odd' behavior such as an obsession with numbers, aversion to physical affection, fastidiousness, inability to feed himself, and echolalia, Gilman realized these were 'uncontrollable manifestations of a disorder,' namely hyperlexia. Falsely reassured by their well-intentioned pediatrician, the couple finally sought professional therapists, and after they relocated to Poughkeepsie, N.Y., where both got teaching jobs at Vassar, Benj made marvelous progress in school. Throughout her narrative, Gilman extracts from many of Wordsworth's poems, which comment on innocence and loss and gave Gilman tremendous succor during Benjamin's early development, making for both charming and studious reading. Her thoughtful memoir involves the breakup of her marriage, rejection of an academic career, and move to New York City to work in her mother's literary agency as much as it delves lyrically into the rare, complex mind of the unusual child. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. Read more Review ?Smart, soulful, and involving.? (Nick Hornby, The Believer)?Rapturously beautiful and deeply moving, profound and marvelous.? (Andrew Solomon, author of Far from the Tree)?The Anti-Romantic Child is beautiful, poetic, and heartfelt. It?s more than a mother?child story; it?s a journey of self-discovery. It?s a book every parent should read.? (Kathryn Erskine, bestselling author of Mockingbird and winner of the 2010 National Book Award)?Priscilla Gilman?s lyrical narrative is profoundly moving and ultimately joyous. It eloquently touches the universal.? (Harold Bloom)?What a glorious book Priscilla Gilman has written. Lively, eloquent, straightforward, and insightful, The Anti-Romantic Child deftly delineates and negotiates the complex cross-currents of a life of the mind and a life of the heart.? (Sandra Boynton, children's book author and illustrator)?Every parent should read this luminous book to absorb or absorb again the truth that every child is a surprise?a revelation?to be uniquely learned and understood as well as loved.? (Mary Catherine Bateson, author of Composing A Further Life: The Age of Active Wisdom)?Unforgettable. . . . I couldn?t put this book down.? (Gretchen Rubin, bestselling author of The Happiness Project)?This is a fascinating, tender, illuminating book about an extraordinary boy and his equally extraordinary mother. A wonderful read.? (Martha Beck, author of Expecting Adam and columnist for O magazine)?A book for all parents. . . . [Gilman?s] poignant story of reconciling fantasy with reality is a universal story of parental growth. A story to inspire us all.? (Ellen Galinsky, the Huffington Post)?A fantastic memoir. . . . I loved this book.? (KJ Dell'Antonia, lead blogger for the New York Times Motherlode) Read more See all Editorial Reviews