Joy

The Journey of an Autistic from the Lost Generation

Non-Fiction - Memoir
176 Pages
Reviewed on 07/16/2020
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite

Joy: The Journey of an Autistic from the Lost Generation by Rebecca Evanko is an engaging memoir that chronicles the author's journey from that of being abandoned at the age of 15, to being a high school dropout, to being suicidal, ostracism, loneliness, and shame to that of getting an incredible husband and marriage, to finding trust, love, confidence, and joy. The author was diagnosed as autistic in her 40s and was misdiagnosed before that and recalls having an unhappy childhood where she found it difficult to forgive her mother's transgressions against her. Her story of growing up in a home where she was unwanted and unloved by her immediate family is heartrending, and her story reveals how autistic people can function well when treated normally.

Rebecca Evanko's experiences while being a business owner, writer, and former faculty member give credibility to the curriculum she has designed for autistics by autistics and the first equine-assisted therapy program. The memoir is straightforward and honest and the author minces no words while speaking about her life and the journey forward. She also speaks about the connection between autistic people and horses. Her story is one of survival after she was abandoned, and with no education, and having a job history that was erratic and disastrous, she has indeed come a long way. This memoir will definitely encourage, inspire, and motivate autistic people and give them hope. Joy: The Journey of an Autistic from the Lost Generation demonstrates how finally she learned to survive and live in a neuro-typical world, stand up for herself, hold her own and land on her feet, learning self-reliance, self-advocacy, and how to love and be loved.