by Kevin Berry
Publication date: October 16th 2013
Category: New Adult
Source: ebook provided by author
in exchange for an honest review
Robert is different. He has Asperger’s Syndrome. He experiences the world differently to 99% of the population. Follow his entertaining and highly empathetic story as he struggles to realise and accept who he really is, try to understand other people—which he cannot—and find a girlfriend. Especially find a girlfriend—he’s decided it’s his special project for the year. Accompanied on this transformative journey by his quirky flatmates, Chloe (who also has Asperger’s, amongst other things), Stef (who hasn’t, but doesn’t mind) and their oddly-named kitten, Robert endures a myriad of awkward moments in his quest to meet a nice, normal girl…and not even a major earthquake will stop him.
This absorbing and humorous story is starkly told from Robert’s point of view, through the kaleidoscope of autistic experience.
Stim is a quirky and emotional tale told from the voice of Robert, a young man with Asperger’s Syndrome. Robert is such a beautiful character; he’s simple and complex all at the same time. He’s very straight-forward, as some autistic folks can be, so he really means what he says and he doesn’t understand why NS (non-spectrum) people don’t function the same way. He’s trying hard to navigate this life in a world that doesn’t make much sense to him when he meets Chloe at a local coffee shop. Chloe is also an Aspie (has Asperger’s Syndrome) but she is different from Robert. She seems to understand the inner working of this world a little better than Robert does, and he’s fortunate to become her best friend and roommate. They end up sharing an apartment with her cousin Stef, who does not have Asperger’s Syndrome, but is very supportive of her cousin. Robert is a man on a mission: to find a girlfriend. A “normal” NS girlfriend, not an Aspie. He’s very determined to figure out what sex is all about, and not just what he’s seen in movies or read in books. He wants an experience and he’ll stop at nothing to get it.
Stim made me feel so many things. This story gives the reader a glimpse of not only what it’s like to be inside the mind of someone with Asperger’s Syndrome, but it also confirms the saying: When you’ve met one person with Asperger’s, you’ve met one person with Asperger’s. Robert and Chloe are alike in the way they understand each other and what they have to go through as Aspie’s, but they are so different as well. I loved both characters for very different reasons. This story dealt me a full spectrum of emotions, and when something touches your heart this way it is not easily forgotten. My pastor said something recently during a sermon: Laughing and crying both come from the same part of your soul. Who doesn’t love a story that causes you to feel more than one emotion at a time? It’s good for your soul.
I highly recommend Stim to everyone that loves to read. No matter what genre you normally gravitate toward, this book is going to make you laugh and cringe and hyperventilate and feel joy and sorrow all in a short amount of time, but it’s going to live in your heart for a long time.
~About the Author~
Kevin Berry is an indie author. His particular niche is writing Aspie New Adult contemporary novels set in an earthquake zone. The first of these is STIM, published in October 2013.
His first novels, co-written with Diane Berry, are Dragons Away!, Growing Disenchantments and Fountain of Forever (humorous fantasy). These are available as paperbacks and ebooks at Amazon and elsewhere.
Kevin’s Website | Twitter | Goodreads
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