The first book in a funny, heartfelt, and irresistible young middle grade series starring an unforgettable young boy on the autism spectrum, from acclaimed author Elana K. Arnold and with illustrations by Charles Santoso. For Bixby Alexander Tam (nicknamed Bat), life tends to be full of surprises—some of them good, some not so good. Today, though, is a good-surprise day. Bat’s mom, a veterinarian, has brought home a baby skunk, which she needs to take care of until she can hand him over to a wild-animal shelter. But the minute Bat meets the kit, he knows they belong together. And he’s got one month to show his mom that a baby skunk might just make a pretty terrific pet. “This sweet and thoughtful novel chronicles Bat’s experiences and challenges at school with friends and teachers and at home with his sister and divorced parents. Approachable for younger or reluctant readers while still delivering a powerful and thoughtful story” (from the review by Brightly.com, which named A Boy Called Bat a best book of 2017).
Bat (Bixby Alexander Tam’s nickname) is a life-like character of a boy on the autism spectrum, and this wonderful book can help you understand autism better and develop empathy. What did you learn about autism through Bat’s story?
Bat makes a friend who loves Bat just the way he is. What do you learn from their friendship? What do you appreciate about your own friends, and how can you be a better friend to those who are different from you?
Bat is a wonderful, developed character in this story about an animal-loving boy on the autism spectrum who thinks a skunk makes the perfect pet. This story can really help children reading understand and have empathy for those on the Autism spectrum as you read about how Bat feels and the way his friends interact with him. You also get to learn a lot of fun things about skunks!
Elana K. Arnold writes books for and about children and teens. She holds a master’s degree in creative writing/fiction from the University of California, Davis, where she has taught creative writing and adolescent literature. She is a frequent speaker at schools, libraries, and writers’ conferences. She is the author of several acclaimed young adult novels including the Printz Honor book Damsel and National Book Award finalist What Girls Are Made of, as well as her picture books What Riley Wore and An Ordinary Day. Currently, Elana is the caretaker of seven pets, only two of which have fur. She lives in Huntington Beach, California.
Charles Santoso (Chao) loves drawing little things in his little journal and dreaming about funny, wondrous stories. He gathers inspiration from his childhood memories and curiosities he discovers in his everyday travels.
He has illustrated several picture books, including The Snurtch and I don’t Like Koala—both written by Sean Ferrell, Ida, Always—written by Caron Levis, which was mentioned in the New York Times as “an example of children’s books at their best,” Peanut Butter & Brains—written by Joe McGee, and Penguin & Tiny Shrimp Don’t Do Bedtime—written by Cate Berry. Also a New York Times bestseller Wishtree by Katherine Applegate and A Boy Called Bat by Elana K Arnold.