The Horse Boy: A Father's Quest to Heal His Son

by Rupert Isaacson | Health, Mind & Body |
ISBN: 0316008230 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingAzukiwing of Miami, Florida USA on 1/26/2013
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This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!
3 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingAzukiwing from Miami, Florida USA on Saturday, January 26, 2013
I found this copy at Bookleggers, a pop-up library that opens one evening a month at varying locations in Miami.

I've read this book in 2012 and it was among my top 10 books of the year.

When his son Rowan was diagnosed with autism at age two, Rupert Isaacson was devastated. But one day something extraordinary happened. Rowan encountered Betsy, a neighbor's testy mare, and a new, profound calm fell over him. When Rupert took Rowan riding on Betsy, Rowan improved remarkably. He was struck with a crazy idea: why not take Rowan to Mongolia, the one place in the world where horses and shamanic healing intersected?

THE HORSE BOY is the dramatic and heartwarming story of that impossible adventure. In Mongolia, the family found undreamed-of landscapes and people, unbearable setbacks, and advances beyond their wildest dreams. This is a deeply moving, truly one-of-a-kind story--of a family willing to go to the ends of the earth to help their son, and of a boy learning to connect with the world for the first time.

Journal Entry 2 by wingAzukiwing at Miami, Florida USA on Saturday, January 26, 2013
A heartwarming, spellbounding journey of a family to Mongolia, in hope of healing its autistic son. Isaacson is a travel writer, so he captures the details of the trip vividly. I also get to understand better what autism is like. I now know not to harshly judge people as bad parents if their kids are throwing a tantrum or behaving inappropriately.

It's also interesting how the author's wife comment that an autistic child seems to have the essence of total enlightenment. Indeed I remember reading that detachment means that your emotion is like a sword in the water or the air, it goes through without a trace. I don't think most people are able to do that, but Rowan does seem remarkably able to let bygone be bygone. I am also intrigued by the author's comment of how some shamans display autistic characteristics and also how some of the shamans say that Rowan will grow up to be a shaman.

The book described a brief interview with Temple Grandin. I happened to have attended one of her presentations last year (and truth be told, only knew of her then.) Listening to her then, and reading this book now, makes me wonder how autism affects a person. Can all autistic people, given the right condition, be able to blossom into someone who are not only self-sufficient, but great achievers? Or are they geniuses that come few and far in between?

Here's a link to a segment in the movie about Grandin. Isaacson's attitude about his son's illness seems to have come from Grandin: that his son is healed, not cured, and that autistic people provides a bridge between animal and neurotypical human beings.

I also highly recommend going to this site to view the photo and videos. It's so much nicer to see the photo inserts in the book displayed in full glory.

I have originally reserved this for the medicine chest bookbox, but I am short one book in the travelogue bookbox, and as this book is about the family's trip to Mongolia, it ends up there instead.

Journal Entry 3 by wingthegoaliegirlwing at Las Vegas, Nevada USA on Friday, March 01, 2013
This book came home in my travel narrative bookbox. It was a book that I haven't heard of before, so I will be adding it to my tbr pile. I'm very interested in reading this one, having been to Mongolia before. Thanks for putting it in the bookbox azuki!

Journal Entry 4 by wingthegoaliegirlwing at Vancouver, Washington USA on Thursday, January 04, 2018
I finally found some time to sit down and read this book. I absolutely loved it and could not set it down. The thought of taking my young kids (who are now 4 and 6) into the wilds of Mongolia seems so daunting, as I've seen some of these horrible roads for myself. I loved Mongolia and the people and I love horses, so this was the perfect blend of everything.

This book was a real eye opener and one of the best books I've read in a very long tme.

This book may end up in my next travel narrative bookbox, that I'm thinking of starting up again in a few months.

Released 1 yr ago (5/22/2018 UTC) at Thegoaliegirl's Travel Narrative bookbox, A Bookbox -- Controlled Releases


Sent out in the 2018 thegoaliegirl's travel narrative bookbox to start the box off!

Journal Entry 6 by wingGoryDetailswing at Nashua, New Hampshire USA on Monday, June 04, 2018
I'm claiming this from the Travel Narrative bookbox. Sounds marvelous!

Later: Very moving story indeed, with the trials of parenting an autistic child and the more mind-bending challenges of such a long trek into some of the most remote country there is - with said child along! I found the details of the journey very compelling, but it was the way the family came to accept, and learn to cope with, young Rowan's condition that made the story. (I was familiar with the use of equestrian therapy before - a friend has a foundation that lets children with many different disabilities spend time on horseback, and even those who aren't able to ride on their own benefit from being with the animals.) Thanks for sharing this book!

I left this book in the Little Free Library on the Greenway on this warm day, along with several others - the LFL was empty when we got there! Hope someone enjoys the book!

[See other recent releases in MA here.]

*** Released for the 2018 Keep Them Moving release challenge. ***

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