Curt Schilling, Book Signing “Best Kind of Different”

Curt Schilling, World Series hero, signing copies of The Best Kind of Different: Our Family’s Journey with Asperger’s Syndrome

*3/26/10 7:00 PM at Hubley Hall – Meetinghouse Lane. Madison, CT.

*3/30/10 12:30 PM at Barnes & Noble – Boylston Street. Boston, MA.

*4/1/10 7:00 PM at Barnes & Noble – Main Street. Exton, PA.

*4/2/10 7:00 PM at Barnes & Noble – Montgomery Road. Ellicott City, MD.

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Curtis Montague Schilling (born November 14, 1966 in Anchorage, Alaska) is a former American Major League Baseball right-handed starting pitcher. He helped lead the Philadelphia Phillies to the World Series in 1993 and has won World Series championships in 2001 with the Arizona Diamondbacks and in 2004 and 2007 with the Boston Red Sox. He is the only pitcher in Major League History to win a World Series game in his 20’s, 30’s and 40’s. Schilling retired with a career postseason record of 11–2, which is equivalent to a .846 postseason winning percentage, a major league record among pitchers with at least 10 decisions.

About “Best Kind of Different”

Until the summer of 2007, the word Asperger’s, was not a part of Shonda Schilling’s vocabulary, but that summer changed everything. By then, her household was in chaos as her son Grant spiraled out of control. His acting out and refusal to listen had grown to epic proportions, but even worse was his apparent inability to relate to the people around him. None of the Schillings’ other three kids ever acted like Grant; his behavior wasn’t just unruly, it was irrational.

Complicating matters was the fact that Shonda’s husband, Curt, was constantly on the road pitching for the Boston Red Sox, so he wasn’t always around to see Grant’s behavior firsthand. Seemingly everyone Shonda encountered had an opinion—”he’s too spoiled,” “he needs a good spanking,” “he needs more discipline”—but it was a disastrous first attempt at summer camp that told Shonda something was definitely wrong. It was then that a neurologist diagnosed Grant with Asperger’s syndrome—a form of high-functioning autism that, in recent years, has been found in children who at first glance appear disruptive and difficult.

Now in The Best Kind of Different, Shonda details every step of her family’s journey with Asperger’s, offering a parent’s perspective on this complicated and increasingly common condition. Looking back on Grant’s early years, she describes the signals she missed in his behavior and confronts the guilt that engulfed her after she came to understand just how misguided her parenting had been before the diagnosis. In addition, she talks about the harsh judgment she’s faced from people who don’t buy into the diagnosis and how she’s used passion and information to fight the ignorance of others.

Celebrating Grant’s successes and learning from his setbacks, Shonda demonstrates how Asperger’s forced her and her husband to reconsider everything they thought they knew about their son and each other, but in the end, it has made their marriage and their family stronger and happier. A tribute to Grant’s strength and a candid glimpse into a family coming to terms with its differences, The Best Kind of Different is an intimate portrait of two parents struggling to understand the complex beauty of their son.

About the Author

Shonda Schilling and her husband, Curt, have been married for seventeen years. Shonda is a survivor of melanoma, an experience that led her to create the Shade Foundation of America. Curt is a former All-Star pitcher who has won three World Series titles with the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Boston Red Sox. He is also the founder of the video game development company, 38 Studios. Shonda and Curt are also spokespeople for the ALS Association, raising millions of dollars and significant awareness for Lou Gehrig’s disease. They live with their four children, Gehrig, Gabriella, Grant, and Garrison, in Medfield, Massachusetts.



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