This Kid Can Fly : It's About Ability (Not Disability)
by Philip, Aaron; Bolden, Tonya (CON)

An uplifting memoir by the 14-year-old creator of the Tumblr blog "Aaronverse" traces his remarkable experiences that demonstrate how his abilities and achievements have defined him more than the challenges of his cerebral palsy. Simultaneous eBook. 50,000 first printing.

After a seriously premature birth left Philip with cerebral palsy severe enough to affect his motor skills, his family invested not only money but energy and love to provide the best treatment and education available. Born in Antigua and Barbuda, Philip moved to New York City as a toddler, where he now attends high school in between maintaining a popular Tumblr, Aaronverse. Intelligent, creative, and high spirited, Philip has stepped up to both physical and economic challenges, and as his genial, conversational memoir reveals, he's gone well beyond just mainstreaming. He writes not just of therapies and physical challenges but provides insightful observations about how his economic class and immigrant status affect his experience. In outlining his needs as a physically challenged kid, particularly the everyday obstacles most kids take for granted, he offers readers an opportunity to cultivate understanding and empathy. Similar to Shane Burcaw's Laughing at My Nightmare (2014), for slightly older readers, this inspiring glimpse into the life of a real kid goes beyond disability to celebrate his remarkable ability. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

The author of the Aaronverse Tumblr explains how he emphasizes ability, not disability: with help. Shortly after his birth, Philip and his mother moved from the Caribbean to New York City when his parents learned he had cerebral palsy, which limited the use of his hands and left him unable to walk. Soon his mother returned to the Caribbean, and his father became his caregiver, eventually raising his brother as well. Economic hardship and homelessness complicated-and were complicated by-his disability, which worsened with such obstacles as late paratransit, broken elevators, and difficulty socializing. Fortunately, Philip met "angels" who helped him and his family educationally, medically, and socially. Through his angels, he honed his love for anime; wrote Aaronverse, a Tumblr to encourage others with disabilities; and created a book and video called Tanda ("This ability, not disability") to push for increased opportunities for people with disabilities. As Phili p refreshingly acknowledges his personal luck, his call for greater accessibility is encapsulated in his fictional story of Dan, a man with a disability without a support network, whose goals languished because "he had the smarts, but not the supports." Philip's simple, chatty account of both physical and societal challenges-and the "angels" without whom he couldn't have risen to them so highly-will motivate readers with and without disabilities to support accessibility and inclusion. (Memoir. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus 2015 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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