cat63 (cat63) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

Book 51 for 2009

Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon

Lou Arrendale is autistic. His condition means he has considerable difficulty with the sort of social interaction that most people take for granted, but it also gives him the ability to draw complex patterns from data, which are invisible to "normal" people and this is how he earns a living.

But now he has a new boss, who resents the cost of the special support mechanisms that Lou and his autistic colleagues need to do their jobs. He wants them to take a new experimental treatment, which will make them "normal" and the story is largely concerned with the conflict this causes.

I don't know how accurate the portrayal of autism is, especially since autism is a spectrum (and of course every individual is different anyway) but the author has an autistic son, she presumably has a clue or two.

In any case Lou is an engaging and sympathetic protagonist, and I very much enjoyed reading this book and seeing the world through Lou's eyes for a while.

Tags: autism, sci-fi

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