Ian’s Walk

A Story about Autism

Julie can’t wait to go to the park and feed the ducks with her big sister, Tara. There’s only one problem. Her little brother, Ian, who has autism, wants to go, too. Ian doesn’t have the same reactions to all the sights and sounds that his sisters have, and Julie thinks he looks silly. But when he wanders off on his own, she must try to see the world through his eyes in order to find him.

  • 32 Pages
  • 8" x 10"
  • 9780807534816
  • January 1998

Buy from Albert Whitman

  • 9780807534823
  • March 2015

Other Places to Buy


  • So genuine are the paintings of narrator Julie, her big sister, Tara, and her younger autistic brother, Ian, that the three children look as though they will continue walking, tying a shoe, or feeding the ducks just as soon as the page is turned…Through its simple plot, the story conveys a complex family relationship and demonstrates the ambivalent emotions Julie feels about her autistic brother.

    - Booklist

  • This is not so much a story about Ian’s autism as it is a subtle portrait of how his autism affects his older sister, Julie…Without shying away from autism, the text and illustrations underplay it to create an ordinary, everyday scenario in which Julie’s reactions could be those of any impatient older sibling. This unsensationalized tone is maintained to the end when Julie realizes that she appreciates Ian not so much for his differences, but simply for who he is.

    - The Horn Book

Awards & Accolades

  • Dolly Gray Children's Literature Award
  • 2002 Children's Crown Gallery Award Master List
  • Pick of the Lists, American Bookseller
  • Outstanding Books for Young People with Disabilities 1999, IBBY


Karen Ritz

Common Core

RL.1.1,2,3,4,5,6,7,9 RL.2.1,2,3,4,5,6,7,10 RL.3.1,2,3,4,5,6,7,10


  • Accelerated Reader Points: 0.50
  • ATOS Level: 3.00