143 pages
Contains Illustrations
ISBN 0-919599-17-6





Rosalie I. Tennison is Editor of Communicator Magazine.


Frances Somers-Armstrong has written a deeply personal account of her life with her profoundly retarded son Jeremiah. In this book written in honour of her son, she talks about “the child who never grew” with love and honesty.

Jeremiah was born with cerebral palsy and suffered a grand mal seizure a few years later. Somers-Armstrong and her husband John worked with their son in daily therapy sessions to help him gain independence, only to lose it all as a result of the seizure. Jeremiah was diagnosed as retarded following this setback.

The book is a heart-rending account of a family’s struggle to understand and accept the special needs of a handicapped child. More than once tears flowed as the author agonized over the setbacks; smiles grew with every triumph. Through all the difficulties, the family clung to each other, making Jeremiah a celebration of faith and love.

In this touching account, Somers-Armstrong does not glide over the fear, the hate, on the frustration. She does balance these honest feelings with hope and love. The book is interspersed with poems written by the author that served to exorcise her feelings during the first difficult years. Although touching in their rhythmic approach to Somers-Armstrong’s feelings, they strike a discord in the book, breaking up the flow of the account.

Jeremiah is an emotional story that touches the reader’s heart. It gives an insight into what it is like to have a handicapped child. Somers-Armstrong has not only written an account of her life with her own son but also a source book for other parents and professionals on dealing with handicapped children.


Somers-Armstrong, Frances, “Jeremiah,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 14, 2024,