Tag Archives: Disabilities

French Toast

french-toastPhoebe, who is half Jamaican and half French-Canadian, hates when her classmates call her “French Toast.” Her grandmother, who is blind, asks Phoebe to explain her nickname. She uses descriptions of favorite foods to portray skin colors. Her white mother is like stirred peach yogurt and her Jamaican father is like warm banana bread. Her grandmother Nan-ma is like maple syrup poured over French toast. Phoebe describes herself as tea, after you’ve added the milk. The imaginative artwork blends traditional drawing and painting with digital imagery using collage, acrylic, watercolor, and computer manipulation. mjw
Title: French Toast
Author: Kari-Lynn Winters
Illustrator
: Francois Thisdale
Publisher
: Pajama Press, Toronto
Copyright
: 2016
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-77278-006-2
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-7
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Author’s residence
: Ontario
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Illustrator’s residence
: Quebec
Subjects
: Blind, Grandmothers, Identity, Multigenerational, Racially mixed people, Self-esteem and self-reliance

One

oneSixteen-year-old Tippi and Grace are conjoined twins. They were homeschooled all their lives, but the funding was pulled and now they attend Hornbeacon private school. They manage to make friends in Yasmeen and Jon. The girls have their own personalities, yet they obviously share a special closeness and love. They begin to have health issues and are faced with the toughest decision of their lives. Grace narrates their fascinating and powerful story, which is told in verse. An author’s note gives information about conjoined twins. mjw
Title: One
Author: Sarah Crossan
Publisher
: Greenwillow Books, an imprint of Harper Collins Publishers
Copyright
: 2015
Original Language
: English
Original Publisher
: Bloomsbury 
ISBN
: 978-0-06-211875-2
Hardcover pages
: 400
Age range
: 14 up
Genre
: Fiction, Novel in verse
Book setting
: U.S.
Author’s ethnicity
: Originally from Dublin
Author’s residence
: London
Awards
: 2016 CLIP Carnegie Medal
Subjects
: Conjoined twins. Emotions and feelings, Family problems, High school, Sisters, Special needs, Twins

Sea Change

Sea ChangeTwelve-year-old Eliot Dionisi’s parents send him to Point Aconi in Nova Scotia for the summer. He is not looking forward to spending time with his wrinkly old relatives who smell like fish. At first, it is not easy for him to fit in. He is pushed out of his comfort zone. But as the summer wears on, Eliot learns to fish, swim, and eat lobster. He discovers his great grandmother’s library, picks blueberries, enjoys a clambake, and even has his first kiss. He makes friends, deals with the local bully, and helps Mary Beth, his crush, with a secret. This warm and funny coming-of-age story is illustrated with artwork drawn in pencil and India ink and colored digitally. Some of the text is also transformed into unconventional illustrations. mjw
Title: Sea Change
Author: Frank Viva
Illustrator
: Frank Viva
Publisher
: Tundra Books, a division of Random House of Canada
Copyright
: 2016
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-101-91852-4
Hardcover pages
: 120
Age range
: 8-12
Genre
: Fiction, Graphic Novel
Book setting
: Point Aconi, Nova Scotia
Author’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Author’s residence
: Toronto
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Illustrator’s residence
: Toronto
Subjects
: Abuse, Canada, Coming of age, Fishing, Growing up, Multigenerational, Nova Scotia, Summer

Mr. Matisse And His Cutouts

Mr Matisse And His CutoutsThis inspiring picture book describes the period that artist Heri Êmile Benoît Matisse was bedridden in a hospital for three months. Mr. Mattisse was appalled by the blank canvas walls in his hospital room. Matisse tried painting the hospital sheets, walls, and ceiling, but he quickly realized that he could not paint in his condition. When he spotted a pair of scissors, Matisse was inspired. He turned his room into a vibrant garden by cutting paper and fabrics. All readers will enjoy learning about this creative artist who is thought to be a leading innovator in modern art. ema

 

Title: Mr. Matisse And His Cutouts
Author: Annemarie van Haeringen
Illustrator
: Annemarie van Haeringen
Publisher
: North-South
Copyright
: 2016
Original Language
: Dutch
Translator: Jan Michael
ISBN: 978-0-7358-4263-2
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book, Nonfiction
Authors’ ethnicity: Dutch
Authors’ residence
: Netherlands
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Dutch
Illustrator’s residence
: Netherlands
Subjects: Artists, Artwork, Creativity, Illness, Painting, Paper Cutouts

Bartolome: The Infanta’s Pet

BartolomeBartolome is a ten-year-old disabled dwarf living in a small village in rural 17th century Spain. His family has to keep him hidden in a back room. His dream is to be able to read and write. When his father lands a job in the court of King Philip IV, the family moves to Madrid. The royal princess gets whatever she wants and she wants Bartolome as her “human dog.” He is dressed in a brown furry suit and is very scared, unhappy, and humiliated until he discovers the painter’s studio. One of the apprentices to Spanish artist Diego Velasquez lets Bartolome mix paints and paint a picture. The book shows how dwarfs were thought of and discriminated against in the 17th century. This heart-wrenching story was inspired by the painting Las Meninas, which was painted by Velasquez in 1656. Velasquez was employed as a court painter by Philip IV, where he frequently painted the royal family, especially the King’s daughter, the Infanta. mjw
Title: Bartolome: The Infanta’s Pet
Author: Rachel Van Kooij
Publisher
: Little Island.  Dublin, Ireland
Copyright
: 2012
Original Language
: German
Translator
: Sioban Parkinson
Original Title
: Kein Hundeleben fur Bartolome
Original Publisher
: Jungbrunnen Verlag.  Vienna
Original Copyright
: 2003
ISBN
: 978-1-908195-26-5
Paperback pages
: 208
Age range
: 12 up
Genre
: Historical Fiction
Book setting
: Spain
Author’s ethnicity
: Dutch
Author’s residence
: Vienna, Austria
Translator’s ethnicity
: Irish
Translator’s residence
: Dublin, Ireland
Awards
: Translator was Ireland’s first Children’s Laureate from 2010-2012.
Subjects
: Dwarfs; Europe; Madrid, Spain; Pets, Special needs: Velasquez

Bronze and Sunflower

Bronze and SunflowerSet during the Chinese Cultural Revolution (late 1960s and early 1970s), Sunflower, a young girl and her artist father are banished to do hard labor in the countryside at a cadre school. It’s a difficult life for her and she is lonely. She meets Bronze, the mute son of poor villagers, who is bullied by the other village boys. After Sunflower’s father dies, Bronze’s family takes her in despite facing extreme hardship, and Sunflower finally finds happiness. This engrossing, beautifully written novel, with luminous imagery, will broaden readers’ horizons. Notes in the back of the book provide historical background and information about Cao’s inspiration for the book. mjw
Title: Bronze and Sunflower
Author: Cao Wenxuan
Illustrator
: Meilo So
Publisher
: Walker Books Ltd. London
Copyright
: 2015
Original Language
: Chinese
Translator
: Helen Wang
Original Copyright
: 2005
ISBN
: 978-1-4063-4846-0
Paperback pages
: 400
Age range
: 9 up
Genre
: Fiction
Book setting
: Damaidi, China
Author’s ethnicity
: Chinese
Author’s residence
: China
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Chinese
Illustrator’s residence
: England
Awards
: 2016 Hans Christian Andersen Author Medal
Subjects
: China, Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), Friendship, Poverty, Survival

Heidi: The Years Of Learning And Travel

heidiYoung, orphaned Heidi lives with her Aunt Dete, but is taken to live with her good-hearted, but grumpy, grandfather in the mountains. Grandfather mistrusts everyone and hopes to protect Heidi from the evils of the world. Heidi makes friends with Peter, the goatherd, and they live in their idyllic mountain world until Dete appears again to take Heidi to Frankfurt (Germany) to live with Fraulein Rottenmeier and work as a companion to her granddaughter Clara, who cannot walk. Heidi suffers from homesickness and eventually returns to her grandfather. Heidi and Clara keep in touch and Clara visits to experience the joy and healing power of the mountains. Gorgeous watercolor paintings take readers to the Swiss Alps and reflect the beauty of the region as described by Spyri in this classic story. An Afterword by Verena Rutschmann, head of research at the Swiss Institute of Media for Children and Young Adults, provides more information about the novel, which is the most popular piece of Swiss literature ever written. A condensed, illustrated young readers’ edition (2009, paperback 2015) is also available. mjw
Title: Heidi: The Years Of Learning And Travel
Author: Johanna Spyri (1827-1901)
Illustrator
: Maja Dusikova
Publisher
: North South Books, Inc, an imprint of NordSud Verlag AG, Zurich Switzerland
Copyright
: 21105
Original Language
: German
Original Title
: Originally published in two parts. Heidi’s Lehr und Wonderjahre and Heidi Kann brauchen, was es gallant hat
Original Copyright
: 1881
ISBN
: 978-0-7358-4250-2
Hardcover pages
: 162
Age range
: 5 up
Genre
: Fiction
Book setting
: Switzerland, Germany
Author’s ethnicity
: Swiss
Author’s residence
: Lived in Zurich, Switzerland
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Born in Czechoslovakia
Illustrator’s residence
: Florence, Italy
Subjects
: Alps, Swiss; Grandfather; Grandparent and child; Mountain life; Orphans