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Far from the Tree

by Andrew Solomon |

REVIEWED BY ANNE LESLIE

People PICK

COMMENTS? WRITE TO KIM HUBBARD: bookseditor@peoplemag.com

NON-FICTION

The author interviewed more than 300 families for this eye-opening look at “difference”: what happens when children are unlike their parents for any of a host of reasons, including Down syndrome, autism, schizophrenia, transgenderism, criminal tendencies and giftedness. The son of parents who struggled to accept his homosexuality, Solomon (The Noonday Demon) had a personal interest in the subject, and his research bore out what he already suspected. While raising children who are “far from the tree” challenges mothers and fathers to love courageously, the experience can be enormously enriching and provides an invaluable service to society. “The world is made more interesting,” as he puts it, “by having every sort of person in it.” Now a nontraditional sort of dad himself-he has a biological daughter who lives with her mom and a biological son who lives with him and his husband-Solomon has written a brave, beautiful book that will expand your humanity.