The Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome: A book review

The Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome by Tony Attwood is a must read. This is an accessible text book that will introduce the condition to someone who has received or who is seeking a diagnosis. Family and interested friends will find this useful too. It also serves as an introduction to students or a reference for professionals.

This is one of the definitive books on Asperger’s Syndrome. It gives an overview of Asperger’s Syndrome symptoms with practical examples in children and adults ranging from language, thought and emotions to social situations including childhood and adulthood, career and relationship issues.

How good is the Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome?

Very! Tony Atwood explains Asperger’s Syndrome extremely clearly giving masses of insight into the condition. The summaries at the end of each chapter make it easy to skim read and then go back for more detail where it is needed. He explains theory of mind in a very objective way showing the difficulties those with Asperger’s Syndrome have and giving research to back up what he says.  This is well referenced using Harvard Referencing system.

Some of the examples Tony Attwood gives are severe and offer a picture with which some might not completely identify but often he is careful to avoid sweeping statements. Also there is a large focus on childhood which will be very useful to parents. 

A more balanced account might have given more on adult relationships and self-help strategies that adults could use. Nevertheless there is a very positive tone to the book as it highlights the abilities that go with Asperger’s as well as the difficulties. In The Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome Tony Attwood describes the condition as “not mad, bad or defective, but as a different way of thinking”.

Should I get The Complete Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome?

Yes! You may be surprised when it arrives just how big it is. It is not a light read but still very accessible. There are briefer and simpler introductions available if that is what you would prefer but many with Asperger’s Syndrome will find this an excellent introduction.

Available form The Complete Guide to Asperger's Syndrome by Tony Attwood