Isabelle comes back to her family home after the death of her sister to find an autistic savant growing up in her sister's home. She teaches the girl, Karen, how to function in the world. Karen learns how to interact with the whole, not only through her aunt's patience, but also through the animals with whom she shares a special connection. Me, Who Dove into the Heart of the World is Karen's story. She goes out into the world to gain the knowledge to, eventually, take over the family's failing tuna cannery. Her intelligence and her connection with animals leads her to create the first "humane" tuna fishery in the world. Her battle to overcome obstacles (like autism) and create this vision is like the stories that all of us write in our lives. We fight to create something beautiful and to make this world a better place.
I identified with Karen because, throughout the book, she brought up issues like environmental problems and animal agriculture that resonate very clearly with me. This novel by Sabina Berman is a one-of-a-kind book that will challenge your views on these topics (among others) and give you a perspective not represented much in literature today. Because, at the heart of it all, it's about a girl who persists through challenges like autism and grows up to confront certain aspects of the world that we take for granted. It's about a girl who dove into the heart of the world.