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Persons Unknown by Susie Steiner Read the opening extract of the brand new Susie Steiner book before its publication on 05/04/2018

A Friend Like Ben : A Mother Desperate for Love. A Little Boy Unable to Show it. The Cat That Brought Them Together. by Julia Romp

A Friend Like Ben : A Mother Desperate for Love. A Little Boy Unable to Show it. The Cat That Brought Them Together.

Biography / Autobiography   The Real World   
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Get the tissues ready when you read this incredibly touching, heart-warming true story that demonstrates the power animals can have on transforming autistic children and the drama that comes when the cat goes missing and the efforts his Mother goes to in order to bring George the Cat back…. One of the most captivating and uplifting stories we've read in a while.

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A Friend Like Ben : A Mother Desperate for Love. A Little Boy Unable to Show it. The Cat That Brought Them Together. by Julia Romp

The heart-warming true story of a little boy and the cat that changed his life.

Nine year old George was severely autistic; quiet and withdrawn, he appeared lost in his own world most of the time. His mother Julia despaired, but try as she might she couldn't bring him out of his shell. Then one day a small, black-and-white stray cat appeared at the bottom of her garden and George's face lit up at the sight of him. Despite herself Julia agreed to adopt him as a pet.

George named his new friend Ben, and the four-legged addition to the household had a wonderful and unexpected side-affect. George and Ben bonded, and George began to open up; to play with Ben, to converse with him and make up stories about their adventures together to excitedly recount to Julia. For Julia this was a magical way to communicate with her son -- and Ben had made it possible.

For three happy years, the trio were inseparable and George made remarkable progress. But then disaster struck -- Ben went missing. The small cat who had coaxed George out of a world of silence had disappeared, and nobody could find him.

George was utterly devastated and, pining for his lost friend, he began to retreat into himself. Sensing her son was slipping through her fingers once more, Julia embarked on a desperate search; a search that would see her travelling across numerous counties, risking injury and enlisting help from all different places, and all different people.

The weeks turned into months, and Christmas was fast approaching but George did not want to celebrate without Ben by his side. Julia privately despaired of ever finding her son's best friend but four days before Christmas Day, during the worst snowfall ever, Julia got a call from a family living in Brighton, over 50 miles from their home in London, which finally offered a ray of hope!


`Julia paints a vivid picture of the symptoms and effects of autism... A truly inspirational biography.
Hull Daily Mail

`A very interesting read which is both uplifting and informative.
South Wales Argus

`A satisfying true story... the perfect Christmas gift for a cat lover.
The Weekend Examiner

`Heart-warming... perfect winter reading.
Your Cat Magazine

About the Author

Julia Romp

Julia Romp lives in Isleworth with her son George and their cat Ben. When she is not looking after her family and the stray cats in the area, Julia works for the charity Lost and Found helping to re-home cats. After her success of her campaign to find Ben, Julia has become known as the local pet detective.

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Book Info

Publication date

26th May 2011


Julia Romp

More books by Julia Romp
Author 'Like for Like'


HarperTrue an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers


288 pages


Biography / Autobiography
The Real World

True stories
Cats as pets



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