Teen books featuring characters with disabilities.
Two Muslim students, Zayneb and Adam, meet during their spring break in Doha, Qatar. High schooler Zayneb lives in Indiana and has an Islamophobic teacher. Adam, who attends college in London, stopped going to classes after he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Both write their thoughts in journals divided into sections on Marvels and Oddities. This is a poignant love story between two practicing Muslims who stay true to themselves and to their beliefs. --Staff (Reviewed 05/01/2019) (School Library Journal, vol 65, issue 4, p37)
Over the span of six years, Spencer and his neighbor Hope oscillate between being best friends and virtual strangers. When they first meet, he’s a gawky 13-year-old with Tourette’s syndrome, and she’s a fearless wannabe adventurer. Spencer provides the lion’s share of the narration, accompanied by flowchart-like taxonomies that he uses to try to chart and define their intense bond. Intermittent passages from Hope—usually conversations with her older sister, Janie—flesh out her side of the story. Spencer’s anxiety seeps from the page as his everyday interactions comingle with his intrusive thoughts. But Hope’s life is far from perfect: she falls for Spencer’s older brother, grapples with a death in the family, and enters a self-destructive phase of grief just as Spencer is gaining social traction among his classmates as a wrestler. Allen presents an honest look at adolescent attraction and life with a neurological disorder in a story populated by fully believable characters who are trying to figure out who they are and how they fit in the world. --Staff (Reviewed 11/20/2017) (Publishers Weekly, vol 264, issue 47, p)
Skyler, Ellie, Scarlett, and Amelia Grace are forced to spend the summer at the lake house where their moms became best friends. One can't wait. One would rather gnaw off her own arm than hang out with a bunch of strangers just so their moms can drink too much wine and sing Journey at two o'clock in the morning. Two are sisters. Three are currently feuding with their mothers. One is hiding how bad her joint pain has gotten. All of them are hiding something. One falls in love with a boy she thought she despised. One almost sets her crush on fire with a flaming marshmallow. One has a crush that could change everything. None of them are the same at the end of the summer.
A girl who can’t speak and a boy who can’t hear go on a journey of self-discovery and find support with each other in this gripping, emotionally resonant novel.
Julia does graffiti art to elevate the spaces and people around her. She won’t stop, even when a piece obscuring a slur about her friend Jordyn on the wall of Kingston School for the Deaf gets Julia expelled, and Jordyn doesn’t even care. At public high school, Julia gains an interpreter who tattles on Julia to both of her moms, the unwanted adoration of a bubbly girl she dubs YP (for Yoga Pants), the ire of just about everyone else, and an insatiable urge to continue her risky art form. When YP persists in her efforts at friendship, Julia begins to let her guard down, bringing YP into her world of tagging and eventually learning that YP has some secrets of her own. Julia’s motivations are complex, and the intersectionality of her character is appealingly realistic. Gardner brings together Deaf culture, discrimination, sexuality, friendship, body image, trust, betrayal, and even a potential Banksy spotting for this fresh novel, brightened by black-and-white illustrations from Julia’s notebooks. -- Booth, Heather (Reviewed 2/15/2017) (Booklist, vol 113, number 12, p77)
Deaf teen Maya Harris must navigate a new life---and love---in this own-voices novel from award-winning author Alison Gervais. When Maya is forced to attended a hearing school, she sets out to prove that her lack of hearing won't stop her from chasing her dreams.
Groth presents an insightful and rewarding road-trip story about 19-year-old Australian twins Perry and Justine Richter. Their mother abandoned them when they were children, and Justine has served as the caregiver for Perry, who is on the autism spectrum, ever since their father’s death. While high-functioning Perry is intelligent and kindhearted, his anxiety can turn to panic, and his obsessions with sea monsters, Jackie Chan, and seismic activity can be a handful, even for patient, understanding Justine. Two years after their father’s death, Perry has decided to move into a group home, so this two-week trip traveling through the Pacific Northwest in the U.S. and Canada marks the end of an era in their relationship. Along the way, they visit a lake that’s allegedly home to the mythical Ogopogo, meet people with a range of reactions to Perry, and track down their mother. Told from the alternating perspectives of both twins, along with excerpts from their father’s journal, Groth’s story is uncommonly sensitive, his characters’ emotional journeys as critical as their physical ones. --Staff (Reviewed May 11, 2015) (Publishers Weekly, vol 262, issue 19, p)
A cursed prince and a high school dropout become unlikely allies in this ambitious "Beauty and the Beast" adaptation. Harper's life in Washington, D.C., hasn't been easy: Her mother is dying of cancer, and her father's only legacy is the loan sharks her brother Jake works for to pay off his debts. Harper, who has cerebral palsy, is standing lookout for Jake when she sees a man carrying an unconscious woman. Harper intervenes—and is magically transported to Emberfall, a kingdom abandoned by its rulers and beset by both a mysterious beast and attacks from a neighboring country. She meets blond Prince Rhen, who reveals that the beast killed his family. He believes falling in love is the only way to save his kingdom, and his guard commander travels to Harper's universe to find matches for him. Harper doesn't buy it. Rather than acquiesce to fate, she calls Rhen's attention to more immediate, practical actions they can take to protect his kingdom. Refreshingly, Harper is the undisputed hero and also not the only significant character with a disability. Avoiding disability inspiration tropes, she is a fallible, well-rounded character who fights for the vulnerable and resists being labeled as such herself despite how others perceive her. (Fantasy. 12-18) (Kirkus Reviews, November 15, 2018)
Isabel has one rule: no dating. It's easier-it's safer-it's better-for the other person. She's got issues. She's got secrets. She's got rheumatoid arthritis. But then she meets another sick kid. He's got a chronic illness Isabel's never heard of, something she can't even pronounce. He understands what it means to be sick. He understands her more than her healthy friends. He understands her more than her own father, who's a doctor. He's gorgeous, fun, and foul-mouthed. And totally into her. Isabel has one rule: no dating. It's complicated-it's dangerous-it's never felt better-to consider breaking that rule for him.
After a gunshot leaves her paralyzed, Barbara Gordon enters the Arkham Center for Independence, where Gotham's teens undergo physical and mental rehabilitation. Now using a wheelchair, Barbara must adapt to a new normal, but she cannot shake the feeling that something is dangerously amiss.
Finn Easton, sixteen and epileptic, struggles to feel like more than just a character in his father's cult-classic novels with the help of his best friend, Cade Hernandez, and first love, Julia, until Julia moves away.