Friday, June 17, 2016

600 Hours of Edward, by Craig Lancaster

You ought to meet my friend, Edward.  OK, he's not really my friend, but I sort of feel like he is after spending a few weeks of his life with him in Craig Lancaster's 600 Hours of Edward.  Edward Stanton is a young man with OCD and Asperger's syndrome.  He likes his routines, he likes to watch Dragnet (the color episodes only, and every one of them is one of his favorites), and he loves spaghetti.  A lot can happen in 600 hours, and in 600 Hours of Edward, a lot does happen.

Craig Lancaster does not have OCD or Asperger's, but he captures Edward's personality in a way that seems authentic and sympathetic.  I could definitely see traits in Edward that I have seen in autistic individuals I have known.  Central to Edward's story are his struggles in relationships, both with his controlling father and with the little boy across the street and the boy's mother.  In the boy, Edward finds his first friend.  With his father, Edward feels unloved and unaccepted.  It doesn't help that his father, who supports Edward financially, sends a letter from the family lawyer to summon him when he wants to talk.

Edward will make you laugh.  He can be funny sometimes.  Even though his routines are rather monotonous, like recording the high and low temperatures every day and eating the same things every week, Edward is anything but ordinary.  He handles emotions and relationships differently than neurotypical people, but we can learn from his foibles and adventures.  Maybe writing--and filing--a nightly letter of complaint would help me reflect on my day.  Edward has no guile and is alway honest with others.  That gets him into trouble from time to time, but honesty is the best policy, right?  And speaking of right, right turns are safer than left turns.

And my data is complete.

2016 Reading Challenge: A book from a library

No comments:

Post a Comment