Recommended for anyone who’s been touched by ADHD, The Boy Who Lost His Attention is an informative story.
DPA Weston’s The Boy Who Lost His Attention, with illustrations by Leena AK, portrays attention deficit hyperactivity disorder from a young person’s point of view. It is an outstanding fact-based and informative book aimed at children who have ADHD.
The hero of the story, known as “the Boy,” lives with his mother and, at intervals, his father. Both parents love the boy, but at first nobody notices that he’s a little bit different from his friends. Even the boy himself doesn’t notice. Things change when the boy is old enough to go to school and finds that certain things, like sitting still and following directions, are hard to do. The book follows the boy through elementary school as teachers, principals, parents, and doctors work together to figure out what’s going on, and into the future, eventually showing him as a grown-up with a job.
The boy is a generic, likable kid, making it easy for readers to slide into his shoes and see their own problems reflected in his. Particularly effective is the book’s portrayal of how the boy himself views his problem. Uniformed teachers or others might see him as willfully inattentive, but to the boy, his attention is a part of something that went missing, lured away by ADHD. But the boy also notices that he has superpowers—being sensitive to other people and reading several grade levels above his classmates.
One of the book’s underlying themes is the boy’s refusal to see himself as “bad” or a victim. Being prescribed the right medication is a big step in finding the boy’s lost attention, and the book’s presentation of this is honest, acknowledging that there are some downsides to medications, which don’t cure ADHD. The narrative voice is clear and accessible throughout, and helpful bullet lists weave in, showing how certain baffling behaviors are related to ADHD and forwarding a list of “super powers” often shared by ADHD people, such as solving problems with outside-the-box thinking.
Fifth grader Leena AK’s illustrations are bright and colorful, capturing the boy’s spirit and his experiences. The book is set in a font known as OpenDyslexic, especially designed to make reading easier. Up-to-date material for parents and educators follows the story, including myth-busting facts, signs to watch for, website resources, suggestions for further reading, and an overview of ADHD’s impact on society.
Recommended for anyone who’s been touched by ADHD, The Boy Who Lost His Attention is an informative, accessible, and enjoyable story.
Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Reviews make no guarantee that the author will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.