Have you heard of “Sam’s Secret Journal” ?  The three book series was featured in a recent article on “The Mighty.”
Sam's Top Secret Journal

The books are based on a real young woman who we’ve met here on The Road before.  She’s also been featured in our posts and photo campaign for Down syndrome Awareness this month.
Dev on The Road We've Shared

But for today, I asked her Mom, Sue, to talk about the books.  I’m working on a project that looks at Down syndrome in books for children and young adults so I wanted to know – “What made you write a kid’s book?”  Her answer blew me away!  

Why write the “Sam’s Top Secret Journal” series?

By Sue Adelman
There are so many reasons, but first and for most would be to create hope and expectations for parents, siblings and society.  Dev and Sue went to their first NDSC convention a few years ago and heard Karen Gaffney (http://www.karengaffneyfoundation.com/) state: “I am not the exception, I am the possibility”.   I think that is the same reason we wanted to have a literary figure for others to have in mind.

When you are a new parent you believe everything is possible.  Your child will grow up to understand physics like *** Hawkins,  sing like Barbara ***, play in the NFL like *** Elway, create like Oprah ***,  be a doctor/lawyer/teacher…    As the child grows into their own person those hopes and dreams get modified and the parent (hopefully) starts to consider realistic dreams for that child: college, family, a job…happiness…   When you get an early diagnosis it seems all of those hopes and dreams are sucked into a vortex of doom.  The dreams turn to worries.  Our hope is to help keep those dreams alive for parents, kids and society.  

If we can help society change it’s viewpoint from measuring things someone can not do, to valuing ABILITY and appreciating differences each of us brings, than we will be happy.

The stories in the “Sam” series are fictional, but every thing that Sam does in the books is something our daughter Dev has done in real life.  Does that mean every child with Down syndrome will be able to do the things that Sam does, of course not, every child is different.  But if you never knew about Anne Frank, Einstein, MLK, Mare Curie the list goes on and on, how limited our dreams would be.  The stories written about these lager than life people expand our dreams and hopes for our own lives.  Kind of lofty goals, but that is the reason for writing the books.

Your Chance to Win!

In celebration of the publication of books two and three in the series, and DSAM14, Sue has offered to donate a complete series to one lucky RoadMap Blog reader! Follow the steps to get up to 9 chances to win!

*Please note – book three is still in production and will be shipped as soon as it’s available.  And, we ask that winner complete a review of book 1 (We Spy) using our online form

Good luck everyone and thanks Sue and Sean!