El Deafo is a graphic memoir by Cece Bell. In really cute, bright illustrations, she tells the story of how she had to get hearing aids at a young age, and how she coped with being different from everyone else. I love graphic memoirs and Bell has a great style.
I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson is about twins who used to be best friends. Their mother wants them to attend a fancy art school, and when one twin is admitted and one isn't, it starts tearing them apart. The book is told in alternating chapters from each twin's point of view, across the span of three years. It's hard to summarize without giving the good stuff away, so let's just say there's a reason this book is an award-winner! I read and reviewed this for a class, and loved it so much I created a book trailer for it!
Girls Like Us is an amazing and emotional story about two teen girls with disabilities who graduate from high school and become roommates. They live with an old lady on the condition that they help her around the house. This book is so real and honest, and so moving. It was so good that I already want to re-read it; I think it'll stay on my list of all-time favorites.
Good Kings Bad Kings is another book with characters who have disabilities. The story is told from different points of view of teens living in the institution, as well as employees who work there. It's an interesting story, but due to the institutional setting, it's especially effective as a way to bring about change.
Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek is a memoir by Maya Van Wagenen, a girl who found an old popularity guide and decided to implement it in her modern middle school life. Her writing is easy to read, with touches of humor and emotion. I've previously reviewed this book on the blog after I read it for a class. I loved it so much, I even developed an "If You Liked..." display based off of it, so you can check out some of those book suggestions as well!
Read them for yourself!
Bell, Cece. El Deafo. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2014. Print.
Nelson, Jandy. I’ll Give You the Sun. New York: Dial Books, 2014. Print.
Giles, Gail. Girls Like Us. Somerville, MA: Candlewick, 2014. Print.
Nussbaum, Susan. Good Kings Bad Kings. Chapel Hill, NC: Algonquin Books, 2013. Print.
Van Wagenen, Maya. Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek. New York: Dutton Books,