The Boy in the Moon by Ian Brown
A Father's Journey to Understand His Extraordinary Son

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Synopsis

A New York Times Top 10 Book of 2011

“[A]n intimate glimpse into the life of a family that cares around the clock for a disabled child, that gets so close to the love and despair, and the complex questions the life of such a child raises...It is a beautiful book, heartfelt and profound, warm and wise.”                                      —Jane Bernstein, author of Loving Rachel and Rachel in the World

Ian Brown’s son Walker is one of only about 300 people worldwide diagnosed with cardiofaciocutaneous (CFC) syndrome—an extremely rare genetic mutation that results in unusual facial appearance, the inability to speak, and a compulsion to hit himself constantly. At age thirteen, he is mentally and developmentally between one and three years old and will need constant care for the rest of his life.

Brown travels the globe, meeting with genetic scientists and neurologists as well as parents, to solve the questions Walker’s doctors can’t answer. In his journey, he offers an insightful critique of society’s assumptions about the disabled, and he discovers a connected community of families living with this illness. As Brown gradually lets go of his self-blame and hope for a cure, he learns to accept the Walker he loves, just as he is.

Honest, intelligent, and deeply moving, The Boy in the Moon explores the value of a single human life.


 

About Ian Brown

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IAN BROWN is an author and a feature writer for The Globe and Mail. The Boy in the Moon has won three of Canada's most prestigious literary awards: the Charles Taylor Prize, the Trillium Book Award, and the British Columbia National Book Award for Nonfiction.
 
Published April 26, 2011 by St. Martin's Press. 304 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Parenting & Relationships, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Boy in the Moon

Kirkus Reviews

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He seeks out and profiles other families with CFC children, interviews a genetic researcher who found mutations in three genes related to the disorder, looks for clues to CFC through an MRI of Walker’s brain and travels to France to visit L’Arche, a faith-based organization that operates communit...

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The New York Times

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“For the first eight years of Walker’s life, every night is the same.”

May 05 2011 | Read Full Review of The Boy in the Moon: A Father...

The New York Times

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In this memoir, the journalist Ian Brown tries to understand his profoundly disabled son.

May 05 2011 | Read Full Review of The Boy in the Moon: A Father...

Publishers Weekly

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Canadian writer Brown presents a moving and deeply felt account of his life with his son Walker, who is one of fewer than 300 people in the world who were born with CFC, cardiofaciocutaneous syndrome, an extremely rare genetic mutation that didn't even have a name until 1986.

Mar 14 2011 | Read Full Review of The Boy in the Moon: A Father...

The Globe and Mail

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All I really want to know is what goes on inside his off-shaped head, in his jumped-up heart.'' Brown slices through ignorance and trite consolation, leaving the eviscerated skins of relationships, social policy and medical expertise flapping in the wind As he did for his previous mission to u...

Sep 25 2009 | Read Full Review of The Boy in the Moon: A Father...

Women's Post

In fact, after reading what Brown, his wife, his daughter Hayley, and the community of Walker’s caregivers have faced and continue to face daily, I feel I have no right to complain about the slightest challenges I face as a parent – such as one too many sleepless nights and trying to feed a picky...

Sep 15 2010 | Read Full Review of The Boy in the Moon: A Father...

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