Synopses & Reviews
A New York Times Top 10 Book of 2011
The Boy in the Moon is Ian Browns powerful, honest, and emotionally complicated memoir of raising his son, Walker—one of only a few hundred people worldwide who live with an extremely rare genetic mutation.
Born with CFC (cardiofaciocutaneous) syndrome, Walker Brown is a mystery, as remote to his family as the moon. Unable to speak or swallow, compelled to hit himself, requiring surgeries, and round-the-clock care, he becomes the focus of his fathers keen intelligence. An investigative journalist, Ian Brown traveled the globe, meeting with genetic scientists and neurologists as well as parents of similar children, seeking ways to reach—and perhaps cure—his son. As Brown becomes part of a community of families, he lets go of his self-blame and his desire to “fix” Walker, learning to accept the boy he loves, just as he is.
A New York Times Top 10 Book of 2011, The Boy in the Moon is an extraordinary memoir that explores the value and the meaning of every human life, through the eyes of one father, searching for his son.
“The truth Brown learns from his severely disabled child is a rare one: The life that seems to destroy you is the one you long to embrace.”--New York Times Book Review
"A fathers candid, heart-wrenching account of raising, loving and trying to connect with and gain insight into his severely disabled son...Much more than a moving journal of life with a disabled child; it is about Browns quest to understand his son and his sons condition...An absorbing, revealing work of startling frankness."--Kirkus Reviews
"Unforgettable...Crisp, observant and, occasionally, subversively funny...In the end, as in the beginning, Brown questions the value of a life like Walker's, "lived in the twilight and often in pain." He sometimes locates it in Walker himself. Another answer is this book."--Cleveland Plain Dealer "Honest and deeply moving."--Tucson Citizen
“A stark, lovely memoir…fiercely plainspoken and lyrical”--The Boston Globe
“Brown presents a moving and deeply felt account of his life with his son Walker, who is one of fewer than 300 people in the world who were born with CFC, cardiofaciocutaneous syndrome…the book describes Browns fascinating worldwide investigations into the various living situations offered to people with CFC as well as his visits with other families whose children have CFC.”--Publishers Weekly
“[An] intimate glimpse into the life of a family that cares around the clock for a mysterious, profoundly disabled child, that gets so close to the love and despair, and the complex questions the life of such a child raises...It is a beautiful book, heartfelt and profound, warm and wise.”--Jane Bernstein, author of Loving Rachel and Rachel in the World
Ian Browns son Walker is one of only about 300 people worldwide diagnosed with cardiofaciocutaneous (CFC) syndrome—an extremely rare genetic mutation that results in unusual facial appearance, the inability to speak, and a compulsion to hit himself constantly. At age thirteen, he is mentally and developmentally between one and three years old and will need constant care for the rest of his life. Brown travels the globe, meeting with genetic scientists and neurologists as well as parents, to solve the questions Walkers doctors cant answer. In his journey, he offers an insightful critique of societys assumptions about the disabled, and he discovers a connected community of families living with this sybdrome. As Brown gradually lets go of his self-blame and hope for a cure, he learns to accept the Walker he loves, just as he is. Honest, intelligent, and deeply moving, The Boy in the Moon explores the value of a single human life.
About the Author
IAN BROWN is an author and a feature writer for The Globe and Mail. The Boy in the Moon has won three of Canadas most prestigious literary awards: the Charles Taylor Prize, the Trillium Book Award, and the British Columbia National Book Award for Canadian Non-fiction.