Mary Losure has crafted a magnificent nonfiction book about the real life of the Savage of Aveyron, adding scenery and understanding to the writings of his observers. A wild young boy was discovered living in the wilds of Southern France in the year 1798. He had a scar on his neck and burns on his body, which led people to believe he was left for dead. He did not speak or show any natural human behavior. After capture, he endured being studied and observed by uncaring officials, who considered him to be an imbecile. He was finally sent to Paris where a true scientist, Dr. Itard, tried to educate him and hoped the boy could learn to speak and tell them of his past life. The boy was eventually named Victor by the doctor who worked with him for five years, but he failed in teaching him to speak. Nothing was known about autism in those days, and this book leaves you wondering if this could be the case for this boy. Victor died in 1828 when he would have been about forty years old, cause unknown. Fabulous reading!
Review by Sally Johnson, Woodrow Wilson ElementaryMedia Center
Rating: ★★★★★ (5 stars)
Interest Level: 5th grade and up
Wild Boy: The Real Life of the Savage of Aveyron
Written by May Losure, Illustrated by Timothy Basil Ering
Release Date: March 26, 2013
ISBN: 9780763656690 (hardcover)