El Deafo

by Cece Bell
Support your local independent bookstore: buy it there!
Content: There’s a little talk of Love (she has a crush) but other than that, it’s quite accessible for the 3-5 grader. It’s in the middle grade graphic novel section at the bookstore.

This one has been on my radar for a long time, and (like too many other things), I can now say I Should Have Read it Sooner!

It’s the mostly-true (except for the part where she’s a bunny) story of Cece Bell, and her experiences as a deaf child in the 70s and early 80s. She lost her hearing due to a bout with meningitis when she was four, and as a result had to wear a hearing aid and use a Phonic Ear during school. It’s not something she really enjoys at first, even though she realizes it gives her a sort of super-power.

But, the story is really only incidentally about being deaf, it’s more about finding a way to belong and a friend. Bell is very practical about the friends she made, not sugar coating anything. But, it’s not a harsh book; on the contrary, it’s a very sweet and often hilarious story. And it’s good that it’s out there to remind readers that it’s because of our differences that life is interesting.

Very highly recommended.

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