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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (24,716 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John Elder Robison Narrator: Mark Deakins Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Ever since he was young, John Robison longed to connect with other people, but by the time he was a teenager, his odd habits—an inclination to blurt out non-sequiturs, avoid eye contact, dismantle radios, and dig five-foot holes (and stick his younger brother, Augusten Burroughs, in them)—had earned him the label “social deviant.” It was not until he was forty that he was diagnosed with a form of autism called Asperger’s syndrome. That understanding transformed the way he saw himself—and the world. A born storyteller, Robison has written a moving, darkly funny memoir about a life that has taken him from developing exploding guitars for KISS to building a family of his own. It’s a strange, sly, indelible account—sometimes alien yet always deeply human.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Deeply felt and often darkly funny, Look Me in the Eye is a delight. People magazine, Critics Choice, 4 Stars
  • It's a fantastic life story (highlights include building guitars for KISS) told with grace, humor, and a bracing lack of sentimentality. Entertainment Weekly
  • Dramatic and revealing. Boston Globe
  • Lean, powerful in its descriptive accuracy and engaging in its understated humor...Emotionally gripping. Chicago Tribune
  • Robison’s lack of finesse with language is not only forgivable, but an asset to his story . . . His rigid sentences are arguably more telling of his condition than if he had created the most graceful prose this side of Proust. Chicago Sun-Times
  • Look Me in the Eye is a fantastic read that takes readers into the mind of an Aspergian both through its plot and through the calm, logical style in which Robison writes. . . Even if you have no personal connections with Asperger’s, you’ll find that Robison—like his brother, Burroughs—has a life worth reading about. Daily Camera
  • Not only does Robison share with his famous brother, Augusten Burroughs (Running With Scissors), a talent for writing; he also has that same deadpan, biting humor that's so irresistible. ELLE magazine
  • There's an endearing quality to Robison and his story that transcends the "Scissors" connection … Look Me in the Eye is often drolly funny and seldom angry or self-pitying. Even when describing his fear that he'd grow up to be a sociopathic killer, Robison brings a light touch to what could be construed as dark subject matter…Robison is also a natural storyteller and engaging conversationalist. The Boston Globe
  • “This is no misery memoir[Robison] is a gifted storyteller with a deadpan sense of humour and the book is a rollicking read.
    —Times (London)
  • Robison's memoir is must reading for its unblinking (as only an Aspergian can) glimpse into the life of a person who had to wait decades for the medical community to catch up with him. Booklist
  • “Well-written and fascinating. Library Journal
  • “Thoughtful and thoroughly memorable…Moving…In the end, Robison succeeds in his goal of “helping those who are struggling to grow up or live with Asperger’s” to see how it “is not a disease” but “a way of being” that needs no cure except understanding and encouragement from others. Publishers Weekly
  • Affecting, on occasion surprisingly comic memoir about growing up with Asperger’s syndrome….The view from inside this little-understood disorder offers both cold comfort and real hope, which makes it an exceptionally useful contribution to the literature.
    Kirkus Reviews
  • Of course this book is brilliant; my big brother wrote it. But even if it hadn’t been created by my big, lumbering, swearing, unshaven ‘early man’ sibling, this is as sweet and funny and sad and true and heartfelt a memoir as one could find, utterly unspoiled, uninfluenced, and original. from the foreword by Augusten Burroughs, author of Running with Scissors
  • Look Me In The Eye is a wonderful surprise on so many levels: it is compassionate, funny, and deeply insightful. By the end, I realized my vision of the world had undergone a slight but permanent alteration; I had taken for granted that our behavioral conventions were meaningful, when in fact they are arbitrary. That he is able to illuminate something so simple (but hidden, and unalterable) proves that John Elder Robison is at least as good a writer as he is an engineer, if not better. Haven Kimmel (who was in attendance at the 1978 KISS tour*), author of A Girl Named Zippy
  • “I hugely enjoyed reading Look Me in the Eye. This book is a wild rollercoaster ride through John Robison’s life--from troubled teenage prankster to successful employment in electronics, music, and classic cars. A kindly professor introduced him to electrical engineering, which led to jobs where he found techie soulmates that were like him. A fascinating glimpse into the mind of an engineer which should be on the reading list of anyone who is interested in the human mind. Temple Grandin, author of Thinking in Pictures and Animals in Translation
  • John Robison's book is an immensely affecting account of a life lived according to his gifts rather than his limitations. His story provides ample evidence for my belief that individuals on the autistic spectrum are just as capable of rich and productive lives as anyone else. Daniel Tammet, author of Born on a Blue Day: Inside the Extraordinary Mind of an Autistic Savant
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller
  • A 2010 Abraham Lincoln Award Nominee
  • An iTunes Top Seller

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Karen Yoho | 2/14/2014

    " Food for thought, especially for teachers or family members who live with an Aspergian. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Hybridmobile | 2/11/2014

    " Good book about an "autist". "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Tiana Mojelsky | 2/6/2014

    " I find it easier to relate to children, especially those with asperger's, after reading this book. Thanks to the author for that. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Sarah Gessel | 1/29/2014

    " I read this on a whim after I saw a friend that said it was good. I know some people with Asperger's and so I thought it might be interesting. The story of this man's life is very interesting, though at times heart-wrenching what he goes through. A very good read. "

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