Far From the Tree

Parents, Children and the Search for Identity

Solomon, Andrew

Book - 2012
Average Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.
Far From the Tree
Solomon tells the stories of parents who not only learn to deal with their exceptional children but also find profound meaning in doing so.

Publisher: New York : Scribner, 2012
Edition: 1st Scribner hardcover ed
ISBN: 9780743236713
Branch Call Number: 362.4 SOLOMON
Characteristics: ix, 962 p. ; 25 cm


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Jul 12, 2014
  • stewstealth rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

The prose in the book is excellent. The interviews with parents and children are emotionally gripping.This is a book that everyone should read as it relates to identity, something everyone strives to achieve. Although the author does mention it, this collection of stories is non random and therefore this is not a true scientific review of people with the corresponding conditions. Nonetheless this book is an exceptional read.

Jun 13, 2014

NYPL Staff Pick
Years of interviews provide insights into parenting and how genetic differences fundamentally challenge individuals and families, personal identity, and nurturing acceptance.
- Selection Team

Jan 09, 2014
  • fandesoleil rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This book is very long, but Solomon's prose is gripping, and he has done extensive research and interviewing. He is a big thinker who strives for fairness. I learned something on every page. Highly recommended.

Jan 01, 2014

Andrew Solomon is the most popular guest Steve Paikin's The Agenda has ever had; the most viewers. He is a delight and obviously extremely intelligent. I am waiting for The Agenda to have him again as a guest. You can probably play yourself a clip on You Tube

Nov 01, 2013

Jill Shumaker suggested I read this book

Aug 12, 2013
  • tompko rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

If you, or someone you care about, has an individual in the family who does not fit the "family mold". (e.g. gay, autistic, etc.) please read this book and pass it on. It is alos a "must read" for professionals who work with/for familes of exceptional children or adults.

Apr 12, 2013
  • Drayjayeff rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

It's extremely rare for me to give a book (or anything else, for that matter) a five star rating. Nothing is perfect, after all. However, Far from the Tree treats such an important topic (the necessity of, not just acknowledging and accepting difference, but learning to love it), I have no choice. As I write this, I'm reminded of the cliched promises on old movie posters: "You'll laugh! You'll Cry!". Reading this volume, I did both—often. At times, I found myself at the kitchen table in the wee hours of the morning, chuckling, guffawing, sniffling and/or sobbing. The emotional impact of Far from the Tree is stunning.

Mar 01, 2013
  • ksoles rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Monumental? Yes. Intimidating? Definitely. Worthwhile? Absolutely. Andrew Solomon's "Far From The Tree" represents the culmination of a decade's worth of research and writing. The author interviewed hundreds of families for his book and, in 12 chapters filled with inspiring but harrowing stories, he tells of these families' struggles with autism, deafness, schizophrenia, dwarfism and more. Children with these conditions are "apples that have fallen elsewhere — some a couple of orchards away, some on the other side of the world."

Solomon also explores the lives of prodigies, "freaks" of another sort who feel as isolated, mystified and petrified as those with disabilities. Ultimately, he approaches each subject in a profoundly personal way, interweaving his own story of growing up gay, dyslexic and suicidal. He calls for a redefinition of difference, arguing in favour of vulnerability and empathy over ignorance and disgust. He values self-acceptance over fitting in and offers startling, inspiring revelations within a stunning work of scholarship.

Feb 28, 2013
  • delfon rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

An extremely well advanced tome with lots of information of various aspects of diverse experiences of parents who have or are going through children with: deafness, dwarfism, dwon syndrome, autism, schizophrenia, multiple severe disabilities, prodigies, children of rape, children who become criminals, transgender. Each chapter can be read alone, notes ate the end. Schjizophrenia was my interest, and the promotion of cognitive behavior theory fits my experience in dealing with this divergence, which may very well be a disease of 'not having ones mind active' (CBT). http://www.amazon.com/Far-From-Tree-Children-Identity/product-reviews/0743236718/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt/180-9657080-7769410?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1


Jan 17, 2013
  • GummiGirl rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

A very comprehensive, and moving, account of what it's like to be a parent to various types of exceptional children. Full of personal stories as well as the medical and moral issues associated with various conditions.


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