Holiday charms from Hayleigh (see page 28).
This young adult novel (aimed at ages 9 to 12, but suitable for teenagers and even adults) was inspired by the 2007 PBS documentary “Through Deaf Eyes,” which explored two centuries of deaf life and culture in the United States. Author Brian Selznick says he “became intrigued by the idea that sometimes we find our heritage or the place where we belong, outside our biological family.” His resulting book, which alternates between a traditional novel and a graphic novel, tells the story of two children whose lives, although set 50 years apart, are interwoven and unfold in symmetry ($29.99, www. scholastic.com). If a Tree Falls: A Family’s Quest to Hear and Be Heard
Jennifer Rosner has two daughters who were born deaf. In her book, Rosner recounts the challenges she and her husband confronted, such as learning about treatment options and making the tough decision to enable her children to hear through hearing aids and cochlear implants. Along the way, Rosner embarks on a quest to understand how the diagnoses
came to be, and discovers deafness hidden in her family tree. This memoir is also a meditation on what it means to be heard, on both a family level (her own mother couldn’t hear or wouldn’t listen) and culturally. Her ancestors lived in a Jewish shtetl in Eastern Europe; their deafness doomed them to ostracism and isolation ($16.95, www.feministpress.org). Listening Closely: A Journey to Bilateral Hearing
Author Arlene Romoff started to lose her hearing in her teens. As an adult, it diminished to the point where even powerful hearing aids were of no help. Then she made the decision to get cochlear implants, first in one ear, and then both. This inspirational as well as informative memoir details her experience of losing her hearing and then being able to hear again ($19.95, www.amazon.com). Sound Sense: Living and Learning with Hearing Loss
An estimated 12 percent of the working-age population has some degree of hearing loss. Sara Laufer Batinovich shares her knowledge and experience of how these individuals can get the most out of their educations and find fulfilling careers and personal relationships. Additionally, she shares practical tips, such as how to navigate insurance claim mazes and how to decide which technology is most appropriate ($19.95, gupress.gallaudet.edu).
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