The Original Ginny Moon by Benjamin Ludwig

Genre: General Fiction
Publisher: Park Row
Release Date: May 2, 2017

Ginny Moon is not your typical 14-year-old girl. She's autistic. Five years ago, she was pulled from her abusive mother's home and hospitalized for malnutrition and broken bones. In those five years, she's bounced from foster home to foster home, but she's currently living with the man and woman who could be her "forever dad" and "forever mom."

Ginny's "forever mom" is pregnant and concerned about Ginny's behavior. Ginny is too obsessed with the "Baby Doll" she was forced to leave behind when she was taken from her mom's house to think about her actions. Ginny will do whatever it takes to get her "Baby Doll" back, even if it means running away, being kidnapped, or upsetting her foster parents.

My initial thoughts on The Original Ginny Moon were clear and immediate. I felt horrible for Ginny, all she'd been through, and the complete ignorance of the adults in her life. I hated the foster mom, felt the social worker assigned to Ginny need a new career, and the teachers and teacher's aides were no better.

It drove me nuts that none of them seemed really prepared to help this autistic girl. No one stopped and listened to what she was saying. They were too concerned with themselves and their own perceptions. It aggravated me.

Despite this aggravation, I couldn't stop reading. I wanted Ginny to get an "I told you so" moment. I wanted her to get. If I was rating this story totally on Ginny, it would have a 5 out of 5. I can't go that high, however, because I found the foster mother to be almost as bad as Ginny's birth mother. For that reason, it kind of ruined sections of the story.

The author does a great job creating an autistic heroine. I just wish that the rest of the characters in the book had been a little more prepared at how to parent or counsel someone in Ginny's shoes.


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