Child with locked-in syndrome writes book

A child branded “unteachable” has authored a 192-page book, despite his profound and multiple learning disabilities.

Born with severe cerebral palsy that left him unable to walk and talk, Jonathan Bryan, 12, from Wiltshire, has written a book about his life with locked-in syndrome.

‘Eye Can Write: A Memoir Of A Child’s Silent Soul Emerging’ explains how his mother Chantal taught him to communicate by flicking his eyes towards letters on a board.

Finally in print

Using his board, Jonathan said: “My writing method is slow. I plan and then I write. I don’t like to repeat the same word twice, so I like my thesaurus.”

He added: “When I am writing, I don’t like it when people predict the word I am writing half way through. It’s very annoying.

“The best bit of writing the book was finally seeing it in hardback.”


Mother Chantal said how proud the family were of Jonathan and what he had achieved.

She said: “A few weeks ago he received the first two copies of the book and decided to give them to his two sisters, after dedicating the book to them. It was very sweet.”

The book launch took place in a London Waterstones on Thursday with Jonathan’s favourite author, Sir Michael Morpugo, in attendance.


Sir Michael – best known for the children’s novel War Horse – said: “His words tell us so much about our universal human resilience, our capacity for understanding, our longing to communicate.

“Jonathan has opened the door for us into his world and reached out his hand to us in his writing.

“When we take his hand as we read, he is not locked in any more. And neither are we. We join him in his journey, he joins us in ours.”

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