This powerful majestic book held my attention strongly and moved me deeply at times I had tears in my eyes on a few occasions as I read avidly the story of Jimmy the boy with special needs and his efforts to live a life in which he was honest to his own self I also had many smiles and laughs as Jim and his family worked within the framework of his very uniue and uirky mindset The observations of ordinary family life through the eyes of a child with autism are fascinating In particular this book offers perspectives on domestic violence and matrimonial relationships which are uite unusual Jimmy sees everything in a different way and his perceptions are genuinely uniue He senses emotional responses as biochemical or neurological reactions in a way that most people could never perceive The background to the family gradually emerges and we learn that dad Gavin comes from a family of social disadvantage with two of four brothers in terrible trouble They were victims of domestic violence at the hands of their own father The family s low income also contributes to a sense of helplessness and fatalism that they cannot overcome their problems Eventually domestic violence shatters the family unit completely and one by one the family members the pillars of Jimmy s domestic existence leave him until he is completely alone For any child this would be traumatic but for a boy with Jim s disability it is decisively shattering and he begins to disintegrate How he finds his way back from catatonic dysfunction reveals the measure of his remarkable mind and his essential goodness It was interesting to me that Jimmy is not portrayed as having special talents which can occur in some people on the autism spectrum He is not a brilliant mathematician nor does he have a photographic memory or OCD He shares that common trait of great attention to detail but his I is average and he does not excel at anything in particular I think this portrayal is important to overcome public perceptions that people with autism are like Rain Man I was discussing this book over coffee with friends yesterday and one of them used the term idiot savant and I cringed internally such an unfortunate term This book won the 2015 Miles Franklin Award and deserves every accolade the critics heap on it The story is beautifully written in accessible prose but with an elegance of phrasing that delighted me It is refreshingly different from some of the recent Miles Franklin winners a good thing IMHO The episodes in Jimmy s modest domestic life have a ring of authenticity which grabbed me The small and big things that happen to Jim made me laugh or cry or both As the book progressed I found I had a huge emotional investment in Jim s life his welfare and his future I think that is the best outcome an author can hope for to really engage with the reader in a seriously meaningful way I loved this book and could recommend it to anyone who enjoys meaningful contemporary fiction with substance 45 starsWhat a talented writer Sofie Laguna is Having read The Choke earlier this year and giving it 5 stars I was een to read the book that won her the 2015 Miles Franklin Award The Eye of the Sheep I didn t enjoy it uite as much as The Choke thus the 45 star rating but still recommend #it highly She again writes through the eyes of a child this time #highly She again writes through the eyes of a child this time s 6yo Jimmy a id who sees and interprets the world differently to most others of his age His parents Gavin and Paula and older brother Robby make
*up the flick *the Flick and the story is set in the 1980s in suburban MelbourneDomestic violence and its devastating effects are to me the main themes of the book Sofie Laguna explores the topic to great effect and notes how it is often inter generational in nature Gavin is the oldest of four boys all of whom experienced regular beatings from their father Pop Flick Two of his brothers are in jail and Jimmy and Gavin are on holidays visiting Uncle Rodney the youngest of the four brothers and they re enjoying themselves on the beach near Rodney s place It was as if they d been laughing since they were boys running up the Portland sand dunes with Stephen and Ray sliding down on pieces of cardboard beating each other to the waves smiling across the water even as one tried to win against another Four brothers joined by the sea and Mother Beloved and by Pop Flick Pop Flick the ole bastard who hit them on Friday nights and Saturday nights and sometimes during the week until their feelings inverted shot backwards and stole their language and drove them apart drove them to jail drove them into trees drove them to Cutty Sark split them divided them and took them from Mother BelovedWhen Gavin hits the hard stuff he can be pretty cruel to Jimmy s mother Paula the person who understands Jimmy the best and the only one who can really manage him and look after him Jimmy explains why Paula can t live without Gavin Mum tried to stay away but she couldn t She did Weight Watchers but she gave up She couldn t say no to slices and lemonade and extra gravy She said Food is for enjoying not counting Enjoying is when you don t want it to stop My Mum enjoyed vanilla slices If she could she would ve crawled between the pastry sheets pulled the custard in tight around her and slept in one Her mouth would have been open all night so she never had to stop enjoying Like gravy and chips my Dad had magnetic powers Mum had no defences for him He got in underneath He was like a slice she couldn t give him upWhilst the story does have its upside and a little joy and happiness I would caution that it s mostly pretty sad and bleak especially the last half when Jimmy s world is turned upside down Sofie Laguna obviously has a gift in seeing and interpreting the world through the eyes and ears of young people and conveying their world with empathy and compassion and I think she is a brilliant storyteller I haven t yet read her first book for adults One Foot Wrong. Ned was beside me his messages running easily through him with space between each one coming through him like water He was the go between going between the animal ingdom and this one I watched the waves as they rolled and crashed towards us one after another never stopping always changing I BOSH!: The Cookbook: Simple Recipes. Amazing Food. All Plants. knew what was making them come I had been there and I would alwaysnowMeet Jimmy Flick He's not like other ids He finds. Nes with cords dials MASH The Bold and the Beautiful Chocolate Crackles and Cutty Sark It seems like an eon ago Parents smoke with children in the room children play outside alone and can even catch a Greyhound bus across the state by themselves This is the story of a special little id that nobody understands not his mum nor his doctor or teachers A sad time in our medical history There are some very dark domestic themes included and makes for a difficult read for anyone but it rang very true for me and having lived in this very age in victoria myself Medical advancement has changed this scene people are understanding of special needs but the other dark aspects of the book alcoholism and domestic violence haven t really changed at all I enjoyed reading this book but it s not for everyone Jimmy Flick lived with his dad Gavin older brother Robby and mum Paula But Jimmy was different different from Robby and different from all the other Mr. Jelly's Business kids His mum was the only one who understood him who could help him when his cells got out of control and he started running racing careening all over until he was stopped with a big gigantic hug Then Jimmy s cells would slow to eual the pace of his mum s heartbeat At night when Jimmy couldn t sleep his mum lay beside him and they counted sheep together When he could see deep into the eye of the sheep he would feel calm he could sleep Jimmy s dad didn t understand him as Gavin dipped deeper into the bottle of Cutty Sark the family life deteriorated Jimmy found it hard toeep uiet all the time so he didn t annoy his father and what was happening distressed him his anxiety sky rocketed and his cells became too fast again With unexpected suddenness everything changed how was Jimmy to understand this change His mum tried to explain but Jimmy s constant need to now the repetition of his uestions demanding answers over and over began to wear her down What would happen to Jimmy s world What could he do to make it all right Could Jimmy survive his confusionWhat a wonderful emotional and heartbreaking story This is definitely a book which will stay with me for a very long time I loved the character of Jimmy Flick and though I didn t mention Ned above the connection Jimmy had with this beautiful dog was deep and trusting An amazing novel by Aussie author Sofie Laguna which was incredibly sad but also uplifting and real I have no hesitation in recommending The Eye of the Sheep highlyWith thanks to TRR and Allen Unwin for my copy to read and review 5 The same network that was in my mum the same network that was in me in plants and leaves and machinery and all shops and underground in the earth s core It was the whole inside of all living things but on the outside and that s where my dad worked There In that refinery On the other side of the grass and the stream way in the distance the flame leapt from the refinery pipe like the light in the sheep s eye it never died The wetlands air had a potion that came from the refinery flame and slowed me down That s why Mum let me go when I got home I was uieter As soon as we walked into the house through the back door I felt my cells speed up The potion from the flame couldn t pass through the
#Plaster Running Running Running Spinning Flicking His Dad S Paper #Running running running spinning flicking his dad s paper brother s magazine tearing around the classroom and always being told to SLOW DOWN KID Jimmy is a terror and a trial to all around him because nobody nows how to deal with himHis mother has severe asthma his father is sometimes an abusive drunk and his older brother leaves home as soon as he s old enough Mother dotes on him and helps him count sheep to go to sleep so Jimmy becomes convinced the light in the back of the sheep s eye is the soul Five sheep six sheep seven we counted together If you look deep into the eye of a sheep you can see a light It burns right at the back of the head and it never goes out no matter what happens to the sheep The story told from Jimmy s point of view is about how things ebb and flow around him how his family pulls and pushes each other and how the world deals with Jimmy It s how he nows when his dad is safe to approach in his shed if he s had a beer or two but not if he s shed if he s had a beer or two but not if he s the Cutty Sark bottleHe sees his parents singing and dancing to Merle Haggard and Doris Day and he seems to relish repeating the phrases from the songs at times that seem appropriate to him but confuse those around himToday he d be diagnosed as autistic I m sure but that s not the point The point is how Jimmy deals first with the everyday challenges and later with the dramatic changes in his lifeHe s figured out Life better than most of us Everyone and everything is connected with lines pipes wires and tubes He sees patterns everywhere joining #His Family To Each #family to each to the backyard to the fence His dad works in the refinery and he describes that as a raw creature without any skin first uote and the flame is its eye of the sheep He describes his mother s asthma as blocked breathing tubes and tears as water coming from eye pipes He never cries and doesn t understand how people do it He certainly feels joy and pain but tears don t comeWhen he first meets Ned his uncle s rambunctious happy dog he notices something Ned was hot and shaking and wet and running running running but inside him was uiet and still Ned is able to run wildly but not be agitated Later Jimmy brings of his observations together All the secrets for survival are in the animal ingdom Ned was from it even though he was in this world too I looked in his eyes and I saw the light from the eye of the sheep like lamps to show the way When you read a story about a boy like this you start wondering exactly what s normal and what s crazyI loved it and am not alone It s no wonder Laguna won the Stella Prize and the Miles FranklinIf you hanker for something outside the everyday mystery or romance try seeing the world from this boy s unusual perspectiv. E the unfathomable world and make things rightSofie Laguna's first novel One Foot Wrong received rave reviews sold all over the world and was longlisted for both the Miles Franklin and Prime Minister's Awards In The Eye of the Sheep her great originality and talent will again amaze and move readers In the tradition of Room and The Lovely Bones here is a surprising and brilliant novel from one of our finest write. But from reading the synopsis it looks like that is also told through a young person s view and features families and abusive relationships I totally get that this type of narrative and these themes are Sofia Lagnua s strong points and I will gladly read anything of hers but I will be interested to see if she ventures out of her comfort zone in her next book This recent winner of the Miles Franklin award in Australia was a winner too for me in every way I would have given it six stars out of five if that was possibleJimmy and his voice is such a uniue and exceptional creation totally original and poignantHe is a boy very different to other children somewhere perhaps on the autism spectrum but with a wisdom and an insight beyond that of his eldersThis is such an empathetic story which covers abuse and love in eual measure and allows redemption in the end All the characters are beautifully and believably depicted with all their faults and sins Even Liam a boy in care towards the end of the story will move the hardest heart despite his rough and violent exterior These are all characters who are just searching for love and acceptanceBut it is Jimmy s parents and brother whose love and abuse sear the pa Okay Wow This one just Corps Values: Everything You Need to Know I Learned In the Marines knocked me for six When it started I thought here we go another superbly brilliant but totally misunderstood child with Asperger s Syndrome And indeed so he was But then the book was just outstanding his adoring but hopeless mother his charming but alcoholic father his brother who tried so hard but in the end had to make his own life his uncle who wanted to do the right thing but did notnow how It was heart breaking I wanted to wrap Jimmy up and bring him home and care for him properly The book is a heart breaker but very very real Easily five stars I loved it What a trip this wasThe world as perceived by young Jimmy Flick who has Aspergers SyndromeFor many years I worked with The Sun Shines Over the Sanggan River kids with Asperger s and Autism and what Sofie Laguna has achieved here is nothing short of brilliant The author has captured the essence of what it is to be Autistic Reading this book was like reading a case study It was so familiar to me Life was never going to be easy for Jimmy but having a father who turned physically abusive when he was drunk just made things that bit harder The three most important people in Jimmy s universe are his Mum his Dad and his bother RobbyBut Robby left the home as soon as he was old enough to leave This made a big hole in Jimmy s life Then the time came when the father Gavin lost his job After a night of heavy drinking he assaulted both Jimmy and Paula the mother In the morning Gavin heart sickened at what he had done pack his bags and left forever That hole in Jimmy s life just got biggerThat left only his mum in Jimmy s universeWithout giving too much away circumstances dictate that Jimmy sets out on his own in a world he finds hard to relate to to find his dadIf Jimmy s journey doesn t get your parental juices flowing go and see a doctor because there is something wrongThis is my second book by Sofie Laguna and I have been mesmerised on both occasionsHighly recommended 55stars Jimmy lives with his mother father and brother Robbie He is not like otherids and his mother believes she is the only one that can manage him But when their family of four becomes a family of two she worries how Jimmy will cope if anything ever happens to herJimmy tells the reader a story about his life and the people that mean everything to him his family Although it s not spelled out in words it seems apparent that Jimmy suffers from Aspergers Syndrome The repetition of speech sometimes going too fast at other times too slow and taking things said literally and having a deep perception of all around and within him Jimmy s mother feels that she is the only one to manage him so she shuts everyone else out including Jimmy s father Through Jimmy and the conversations he overhears we get to THIEME Atlas of Anatomy: Head and Neuroanatomy know the other characters and their thoughts and feelingsLaguna has depicted extremely well the life of an alcoholic and those around them The love the despair the forgiveness A mothers love for her child closing out everyone else and her continual worry about what will happen if she wasn t there to protect him A child s deep and forgiving love for a parentThis is a confronting story that is written with compassion and well researched There is swearing but it is not overly done and it fits with the characters and scenesAfter reading Jimmy s story you willnow where the crying is made Jimmy Flick is unlike other children in fact in a way #he is a uniue little boy who has learning difficulties He lives with his parents and older brother Robby The only #is a uniue little boy who has learning difficulties He lives with his parents and older brother Robby The only who truly understands him is his mother Paula His father Gavin can t cope with Jimmy and as a result he turns to alcohol and with alcohol comes violence Jimmy new when his father had been drinking it was a time to maintain uiet and stay out of his way Only of course Jimmy couldn t always control either of these things no matter how hard he tried Looking out and hearing his father s going into violent rages only made Jimmy feel worse At night time his mother Paula would lay with him and together they would count sheep until Jimmy was feeling relaxed and would drop off to sleep Then suddenly one day something occurred that would change their lives Jimmy didn t understand change and although his mother answered his uestions the best she could to explain the situation Jimmy he still didn t seem to fully understand How would Jimmy cope and would he come to terms with it all or would he still feel uncertain about the futureAn amazing and would he come to terms with it all or would he still feel uncertain about the futureAn amazing that will break your heart I was a little disappointed with the ending as I felt it was tied up too neatly and I would ve liked a different outcome for Jimmy s father but in saying that I thoroughly loved this book Highly recommended Altona Victoria circa 1980 Telepho. A lot of the adult world impossible to understand especially why his Dad gets so angry with him Jimmy's mother Paula is the only one who can manage him She teaches him how to count sheep so that he can fall sleep She holds him tight enough to stop his cells spinning It is only Paula who can eep Jimmy out of his father's way But when Jimmy's world falls apart he has no one else to turn to He alone has to navigat.