I am so loving Marcelo in the Real World, by Francisco X. Stork. I won't be the first one to compare the narrator's voice to that of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, but I'll say I like this one much better. Marcelo is more self-aware than Christopher, less trapped inside himself. He doesn't have an official diagnosis, and he seems to be "higher functioning" than the other character. I think this can make it easier to relate to him.
It helps that the problems he has are very easy to relate to. He's nervous about his new summer job and feels in over his head, unsure of all the politics and machinations that are going on around him. His father wants him to leave his special school, where he trains horses and takes Social Interaction classes along with history and science. Marcelo and his father have a cautiously respectful relationship, but they really don't understand each other. It's a story that could play out even if Marcelo thought like other people; his problems are mine, too.
I find myself rooting so hard for him that every little success or stumbling block seems monumental. Will he finish the photocopying on time? Will he connect with his father in this conversation? And, through it all, the question of whether he'll get to decide where he goes to school in the fall--to his comfortable Paterson or the "real world" school his father wants him to attend?
I'm afraid I can guess the answer to the last question--the after school special, pat answer is that he'll succeed at his summer job and his father will follow through on their bargain and let him choose, but, having found that he can handle the real world, he'll choose the regular school. That would kind of suck, because he's not "normal," typical, whatever you want to call it. Marcelo IS special. I'm afraid the book won't give that fact enough honor in the end.
But I won't spoil it for you. Nothing I've said here isn't in the first two chapters, and if I have to come back and rant or rave about the end, I'll do it in the comments. So if you don't like spoilers, you'll probably want to skip the comments on this one!