Saturday, October 25, 2014

El Deafo by Cece Bell - - ADVISABLE

Bell, Cece El Deafo, 233 pgs. Amulet Books, 2014. $21.95  Language: G; Violence: PG; Mature Content: PG (bathroom humor)  GRAPHIC NOVEL

When Cece was 4 years old, an illness damaged her hearing.  This graphic novel memoir chronicles Cece's elementary school years and her struggle with making friends, the stigma of being hearing impaired, and using a bulky hearing aid for school called the Phonic Ear.  Changing a mean name she hears on an "after school special" she imagines herself a superhero 'El Deafo' who can, with the help of her special hearing aid defeat the mean kids. 

Everyone's experiences are different, and this novel shows both sides, the children's efforts to include Cece and try to accommodate her, and Cece's embarrassment that everyone is watching her and being worried about what people will  think.  Light and funny, the illustrations are as delightful as the story.  Not all joy and laughter, however, Bell shows the problems as well.  

EL, MS - - ADVISABLE  Lisa Librarian

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