New books help parents cope with the diagnosis.

When parents hear their child has autism, they're probably devastated by the diagnosis and the unique challenges that come with caring for a child with special needs. Enter to win these books now.

My Child Has Autism: What Every Parent Needs to Know, by Clarissa Willis, Ph.D., helps parents cope by explaining autism and the major characteristics associated with the disorder, and offers uncomplicated strategies for helping their child function at home, school and in the community. The book provides strategies to help kids learn to be independent, succeed in school, build social skills, and communicate with others. Available for $12.95 at gryphonhouse.com.

In 2004, Chantal Sicile-Kira's Autism Spectrum Disorders became the essential guide for parents of children with a wide range of special needs and was named Outstanding Book of the Year by the Autism Society of America.

In 2006, Sicile-Kira turned her attention to the booming demographic of autistic adolescents, offering practical and
much-needed information in Adolescents on the Autism Spectrum. Now, in her third book, the author presents a positive and empowering "bill of rights" for every person on the autism spectrum.


Autism Life Skills: From Communication and Safety to Self-Esteem and More-10 Essential Abilities Every Child Needs and Deserves to Learn arms parents with an action plan to help each child pursue a satisfying, productive life. For parents of children with Asperger's, Nonverbal Learning Disorders, and more severely impaired autism, as well as related conditions, this empowering and practical guide will provide help, hope and answers-so every child has a chance to reach his or her full potential. Trade paperback, $14.95.

Trusted authority Travis Thompson, author of the bestselling book, Making Sense of Autism, takes readers beyond understanding the disorder and reveals specific ways to help children overcome everyday challenges and develop critical skills they'll use their entire lives.

Dr. Thompson's Straight Talk on Autism is based on the latest research and the author's extensive clinical experience. These ready-to-use tips and strategies will help children with autism spectrum disorders meet tough challenges head-on: increasing tolerance for change; establishing secure, trusting relationships; overcoming stimulus intolerance and much more. Available at brookespublishing.com for $24.95.


Harry the Dirty Dog and More Playful Puppy Stories
Pulling inspiration from a handful of celebrated children's books, Harry the Dirty Dog and More Playful Puppy Stories is aimed squarely at preschoolers. The DVD's gentle, low-key animated shorts collected here (as well as one live-action piece) have none of the pop-culture references and zany high jinks that characterize much of what passes for family-friendly entertainment. That may not translate into much fun for older kids, but the smallest viewers are likely to be enchanted. Available at Walmart for $11.74. Enter to win this book now.


Parenting with Pets: The Magic of Raising Children with Animals
There is growing evidence that a child's involvement with a pet will have a multi-faceted impact on his or her growth and development. Pets also present parents with teachable moments and they can be a conduit for unexpressed emotions of children and parents as well. A pet accepts a child just as they are. Parenting with Pets gives guidelines on how to tap into the valuable opportunities that pets present for a family and provides new information on how pets enrich the relationship between parent and child. This is an important book for anyone getting ready to own a pet or who already has a pet in his or her life. Available at Amazon.com or bookstores for $16.95. Enter to win this book now.


An easy button for life learning
Parents feel good when they can say something smart to their kids; something that can help define their ethical makeup and guide them through the challenges and struggles of life. The problem is these words of wisdom are hard to come up with at a moment's notice. That's why Marty Lee Parker from Dublin, Ohio created Secrets of Life & Words of Wisdom, a Life Learning Device. At the touch of a button the device delivers daily motivations and life mantras from people who have lived passionate and fulfilled lives, like Helen Keller, Ann Frank, Mark Twain and others. The device was even distributed to this year's Academy Award nominees! For more information about Life Learning Devices, call (614) 873-8452, or e-mail Marty at info@lifelearningdevices.com.


Have your very own pet shop
Befriend a variety of adorable animals in My Pet Shop for Nintendo DS! Players can catch and care for over 40 different types of animals. My Pet Shop is cute and easy for kids of all ages to play. The game teaches children to be organized, responsible and caring, all while having fun. With a cheerful cast of characters, fun mini-games and a wireless mode to connect with friends, My Pet Shop is perfect for kids who love animals. Available on Amazon.com for $29.99. Enter to win this game now.


Attention future veterinarians
Did you know that a vet is the one of the most popular answers children give when asked what they want to be when they grow up? Playmobil's new Vet Clinic line includes an animal clinic, animal nursery, vet with car, cat scratch tree, guinea pig pen and pet transport. All sets are available at specialty retailers and at playmobilusa.com. Various prices. Ages 4 and up. Enter to win now.