Books about people with disabilities highly readable—March 19, 2010
People with disabilities face challenges every day that most never have to face in a life time. Understanding these disabilities can be difficult for family members, friends, co-workers, etc. and some of the nonfiction books about disabilities can be confusing. Today there are other ways to find out about disabilities, reading a story or novel about someone who overcomes their disabilities, or how a family member comes to understand them can be very helpful, and easier to understand than some non-fiction books. The Hastings Public Library has a good selection of these books for you to choose from.
To help your child learn about disabilities try: “In Jesse’s Shoes” by Beverly Lewis. In this touching story Allie struggles to understand her brother Jesse, and other children who make fun of him because of his learning disability. Allie learns to look at the world the way Jesse does and in doing so, is able to understand that being different is not a bad thing. Also try “What’s Wrong with Timmy?” by Maria Shriver. In this story Kate, goes to a park with her mother and sees a boy named Timmy who looks and behaves differently than the other children, Kate asks her mom what’s wrong with him. Her mother introduces them and they form a friendship, and Kate realizes that there is nothing wrong with Timmy.
For older children try these chapter books. “Rules” by Cynthia Lord is about Catherine who wants a normal life, but finds it difficult because of her brother who has autism. During the summer she meets new friends that help her to be more understanding and accept her brother for who he is. “A Corner of the Universe” by Ann M. Martin revolves around 12 year old Hattie who gets a surprise when an uncle she never knew about comes to live with her family. Adam is mentally disabled and was kept a secret by Hattie’s family, but when Adam come to live with Hattie’s family she experiences a summer that changes her world in unpredictable ways. Finally try “Petey” by Ben Mikaelsen. “Petey” is about a man with cerebral palsy, who was misdiagnosed as a child and sent to live in a mental institution. Petey meets Trevor, a teenage boy who helps him have another chance at life in a world which he has never known.
For adult readers try “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” by Mark Haddon. Christopher Boone, is a teenager with Autism, who is accused of killing his neighbor’s dog. Christopher inspired by Sherlock Holmes decides to find the real killer to prove his innocence. Also try “Marcelo in the Real World” by Francisco X. Stork. This story follows Marcelo a man with Asperger’s Syndrome who gets a summer job at a law firm.
Find these books and many others about understanding disabilities at HPL.