Be Strong, Be Tough, Be Smart

  • by Donato Alfredano, Giada Star
  • Narrated by Natalya Bykov, Roger Buehler
  • 3 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Be Strong, Be Tough, Be Smart tells one family's unique tale of championing a child with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) from infancy to adulthood. Alfredano and Star offer empathetic emotional support, as well as practical tips for connecting with your child with autism.
When Donato Alfredano's son “Denny” was diagnosed with autism 30 years ago, Alfredano and his wife faced previously unimaginable trials: lack of information about Denny's condition, social isolation, and the daily fight to balance caring for their brilliant but difficult son with life's myriad of other challenges. The Alfredano family, including Denny's younger sister, Giada Star, weathered years of trial and error with unwavering dedication to, and faith in, each other. They saw Denny go from an uncommunicative toddler to a respected PhD.
As he navigated medical and educational systems, Alfredano realized that considerable progress could be made at home through individually tailored interactions with his ASD child.
Told in personal anecdotes and easy-to-follow snippets of practical advice, Be Strong, Be Tough, Be Smart lets parents know they are not alone. Alfredano doesn't promise easy answers, but his family's story shows that with fortitude and persistence, there is hope for every child with autism.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Game Changer In The Autism Game

For starters I think the message that speaks the loudest in this book is that parental love has no boundaries in education, research, commitment or results. This is an uplifting and realistic perspective from folks who have lived on the front lines of autism.

They did it during a time much of the debate and confusion of what it was and how it affected individual kids who grew to be adults with autism. Adults who go on to live productive lives that are engaged, with the world around them interactively and not hidden away as flawed.

In my mind, the interesting part of this journey was that they really had no advantages when they were in the middle of the struggle. Looking for answers in the age before the internet where the most you could hope for was a Research Library close enough to utilize.

This book is set up to help parents currently dealing with the challenge to plan and implement a home program if you will. That makes quick work of advice, been there anecdotes which I would think are the most helpful.

But more important than all that a voice to listen to who has faced the Autism negative diagnosis and as a family turned it into not just a positive because this book is so much more than any “my glass is half full” platitudes book.

I'm giving this book five stars because it doesn't sugar coat the reality it just serves hope on the side as dip.
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- CC

Intriguing journey

What made the experience of listening to Be Strong, Be Tough, Be Smart the most enjoyable?

As someone who works with many children with autism, this book was particularly interesting. The author does a great job of conveying hope and giving his account on how persistence and constant dedication has led to better results in dealing with his autistic child. Very inspirational on many levels and I am glad I found this book. Highly recommended.


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- Martha C.

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-22-2014
  • Publisher: Don Alfredano