This novel was written by Elenor Fleisher.
She is an American author who has novalized about 50 screenplays.
She also writes „own“ books,especially for youngadults.
PlotThe story is set in America in the 1990ies.
It´s about Charles Babbit and his autistic brother Raymond.
Charles Babbit is a good-looking young buisnessman who makes very risky,not quite legal deals.
When Charly has troubles with his buisness, he gets the message that hisrich father has died.
Although Charly had no good relationship to his father, he goes with greatexpectations to the lawyer. Actually Charly is the only relation his father had,at least hethinks so. But when the lawyer opens him that he only gets the red Buick and theaward- winning roses Charly is very upset. The rest of his father´s fortune(3000 000$) goes to an „Unnamed Beneficiary“.
So he tries to find the „Unnamed Beneficiary“ and comes to the“Walbrook Home for the Developmentally Disabled“.
There he finds out that Charly has a brother who is 18 years older thanhim, the person who gets all the money.
Charly does not want to believethis, so he kidnaps his brother to makeclear, that he is the rightful heir to the money.
The first days are very hard for Charly; He doesn´t know how to handlehis autistic brother, because Charly does not know anything about this disorder.But Charly learns how to deal with Raymond, he gets used to his habits and hispeculiar idiosyncrasies, eventually.
They experience a lot of things on their 6-day journey, positive, as wellnegative.
Up to the last minute Charly tries to get the money, but finally herealises, that it is the best for his brother to bring him back to Walbrook,what Raymond actually does. He sees, that Raymond is unable to live in a„normal“ world.
Charley learned quite a lot on this journey with his brother, but the mainthing he learns is, that money is not everything in the world.
I really liked reading this book.
Although the book deals with a very serious topic, the author shows us in avery funny way how an autistic person goesthrough life.
The character Raymond shows the most obvious and typical symptoms of peoplewith autism.
Like every person with autism, Raymond is unable to show feelings andemotions. For him only the „feelings“ ´like´ and ´notlike´´ exists.
Another remarkable symptom is, that Raymond strictly refuses changes in hisroutines. For him it is the end of the world if he can´t watch hisfavourite TV-film, or if he finds his bed on a different place in his room. Thisis his way to express his „fear“. Also the way Raymond communicates with others is typical for autisticpeople. He uses meaningless, non- contextual words, gives unusual responses andexhibits unusual body movements, such as rocking or яapping. He uses his speechto talk at Charly rather than with his brother. He is also unable to show socialclues, such as giving a smile. But if he „must“, because his brother„forces“ him to, he looks rather funny. Raymond also hasabilities which are not typical for all people withautism, such as counting things very fast or remember things he read indetail. But another remarkable symptom is, the way how Raymond interacts with theworld around. He often seems aloof and absent,and has a very short attentionspan.
Very significant is, that Raymond can not stand if somebody touches him.
He also shows unusual reactions to physical sensations: He is overlysensitive to touch, if somebody comes too close, he would act hysterically.
Although all these symptoms seem somehow deterrent, the author managed it,to represent Raymond as a likeable, sympathetic man.
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