Keep Clear is available now. You can buy it here.
It is only after a crack-up, at the age of 55, that Tom Cutler gets the diagnosis that allows him to make sense of everything that’s come before, including his weird obsessions with road-sign design, magic tricks, spinning tops, and Sherlock Holmes. The final realisation that he has Asperger’s allows a light to dawn on the riddles of his life: his accidental rudeness, maladroitness, Pan Am smile, and other social impediments. But, like many with Asperger’s, Tom possesses great facility with words, and this shines through this exceptionally warm, bright, and moving memoir, which is alternately strikingly revealing, laugh-out-loud funny, and achingly sad.
Tom explores his eccentric behaviour from boyhood to manhood, examines the role of autism in his strange family, and investigates the scientific explanations for the condition. He recounts his anxiety and bewilderment in social situations, his sensory overload, his strange way of dressing, and his particular trouble with girls. He shares his autistic adventures in offices, toyshops, backstage in theatres, and in book and magazine publishing houses, as well as on — or more often off — roads.