Inspirational Novel About Autism, Inclusion, and Competition

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa., March 31, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — A television news story and his own daughter’s league track meet inspired the author to pen the most honest and heartfelt teenage autism story of recent times.  

While researching the project, author Mark Mussina was surprised to find how few novels involved main characters with autism and has since been thrilled with the genuine response from those whose lives have been touched by people on the spectrum.

“As a career educator and the father of a teenage girl with autism, I found A Mile in Her Shoes to be real, in a world where not being real is easy and gets you to the next conversation,” said Mike Alessandroni, Principal at Northeastern Middle School in York, Pennsylvania. “A Mile in Her Shoes requires you to examine all interpretations of a child with autism and their recipients. A must read for all trying to understand these complexities.”

Mussina comes from a baseball family (his brother, Mike, was a pitcher for the New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles and is a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame). For his novel, however, Mussina chose track and field because he felt it presented a more realistic feel. “I wanted people to read the story and think this could happen in their hometown.”

The numerous teenage characters and high school setting may lead many to believe the story is geared towards young adults, but the author has been pleased to receive glowing reviews from an older audience as well. Mark’s own high school baseball coach, Carter Giles, is now a retired civics teacher. “I rarely read fiction,” Giles said. “I mostly read about local and Native American history, but once I started Mark’s book, I couldn’t put it down, and I didn’t until I was finished. It should be required reading for all high school coaches of every sport.”

The novel has been called “A unique twist on the classic underdog. It’s high school track meets Rocky…or Rudy.”

The book is available on and also at

The author is available for interviews and comments.

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SOURCE Mussina Books