Turi’s Book Corner

Welcome to Turi’s Book Corner, where Portland Parent Guide, Turi Hoaglin, shares with you some of her favorite children and adult books! Learn more about Turi, or how to get in touch with her, on our Guide By Your Side page!

Turi’s Book Corner (November 2023)

The Butterfly Cage
by Rachel Zemach 

This is the memoir of a Teacher of the Deaf in public school who herself is Deaf.  

This is a courageous book and what’s wrong in deaf ed and what can make things much better. Language is at the heart of the matter and this book also explores Deaf Identity. I laughed and cried throughout this book as Rachel herself discovers her own identity while teaching her students. It’s about having friends and adults you can count on and how prevalent Audism is within the general education community. I’m sure everyone no matter where you live will see that the same issues are happening in your own community. 

I highly recommend this for parents and professionals alike. 

Deaf Child Crossing
By Marlee Maitlin

This is the story of friendship and how a deaf girl and a hearing girl become BFFs. It’s a great beginning chapter book. 

With Cindy moving in down the street Megan decides they will be best friends and do everything together. This is about each girl navigating the world around them and new experiences. While things get rocky at times both girls in the end figure out that while even if you hurt each other’s feelings in the end their friendship was a great gift to each other. 

There is a companion book entitled, Nobody’s Perfect.  

Turi’s Book Corner (October 2023)

Fostering Joy Journal for Kids 

This is a journal for kids to explore themselves and being deaf or hard of hearing. It’s geared towards kiddos in elementary school and can be done with a trusted grown-up.  

It’s filled with fun activities to explore emotions, stories about successful DHH adults, making lists of favorite things and much more. 

I wish this would have been available when my daughter and her friends were growing up!

You can find it at https://www.handsandvoices.org/resources/fostering-joy/fj-kids-book.html 


Fostering Joy: A Reflective Journal for Families

This is a journal for parents to help them remember that kids are our kids first. It is also a reminder to find the joy in the unique journey of raising a child who is deaf or hard of hearing. It’s a way to put down your hopes and dreams with easy prompts. Once you start looking for optimism, somehow we find more joy. 

This journal is written with prompts and some great quotes to remind us to not look to the destination but to enjoy the journey. 

Let’s Spark Joy! 

You can find it at https://www.handsandvoices.org/resources/fostering-joy/journal.html 

Turi’s Book Corner (September 2023)

Today I Feel Silly & Other Moods that Make My Day
By Jamie Lee Curtis 

This is a beautifully illustrated book to help kids explore their emotions. It includes being silly, grumpy, angry, joyful, excited, and lonely (among other feelings we all experience on a daily basis). Our DHH kids need to spend time identifying and expressing their feelings. 

In the back of the book is a face with wheels to visually change both eyes and mouth for kids to show us exactly how they might be feeling. 

I love this book and you will too! 

The Sign for Home 
By Blair Fell 

As I was walking through Powell’s I came across a display of books featuring many disabilities. This was one of their Staff Picks. 

This novel follows Arlo, who has Usher’s Syndrome, through his journey. He begins by experiencing language deprivation and learns to find his voice and advocate for himself. 

There is an underlying love story that begins at a deaf school where, due to a massive communication break down with law enforcement and the medical community, Arlo and Shri lose each other for five and half years. Finally, through tactile communication, they are reunited. 

This book is a wonderful education in the language needs of the Deafblind community and what is possible when given full language/communication access. 

I highly recommend. 

Turi’s Book Corner (August 2023)

All the Ways I Hear You
By Stephanie Marrufo 

This book should be in your library. It’s a book that explains not only Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants, and BAHAs (bone anchored hearing aids), but it also explains the multiple ways we all can communicate. 

It’s written by a mom who is active in Hands and Voices. Ultimately this book is about communication and reminds us that “the BEST way to hear, is the way that works best for YOU!”

This book is an awesome way to educate family members and community. 

Remedies for Sorrow 
By Megan Nix

This is a beautiful memoir that is very readable and should be required reading for anyone who is of childbearing age, grandparents, and EI professionals. 

Megan has done exhaustive research into CCMV and she weaves this technical data into her own story. This is story of why we aren’t more knowledgeable about CCMV as a society, the lack of knowledge among medical professionals, and ultimately her triumph as a fierce advocate for her daughter.

She writes about how CCMV is a preventable virus but also the biggest cause of birth defects in the US. 

This is wonderful book to read that reminds us even if our parenting journey wasn’t what we envisioned, it’s still beautiful and ultimately we will be OK.  

Afterall don’t we all love tulips? 

Turi’s Book Corner (July 2023)

The Empowered Parent: Advocating for Your Deaf or Hard of Hearing Child
Edited by Sara Kennedy and Karen Putz

This is a collection of stories from families that have been in the trenches. It is an uplifting book that covers many topics on our journey of advocating for our children. Take aways are real solutions to issues you may be facing and more importantly inspiration that we are not alone. The stories are short so it’s a book that can be picked up and put down. The perfect read for busy families. I saw myself in many of the stories and you will too. 

Here is the link to purchase this wonderful resource: https://www.handsandvoices.org/resources/products.htm 

And She Said Breathe
By Kathy Marvel & Kristen Race PhD

This is a book from the Hands and Voices O.U.R. Project (Observe, Understand, Respond). I love this book for the whole family. One of the authors is a first grade teacher and every couple of pages is a different breathing technique designed to teach all of us simple ways to calm and settle ourselves. Its rhyming prose makes it a wonderful read. I have found that this book is a great way to learn different ways of breathing in a delightful way. Not only is it great for kids, but we as adults can also learn some valuable tools in this book. There is also a free Parent/Teacher Guide that goes along with the book. The Parent/Teacher Guide explains the “why” of breathing mindfully and gives a brief explanation of the brain’s stress response. A must-have book for your parent tool kit! 

Turi’s Book Corner (June 2023)

By Haben Girma 

This is a beautiful memoir about a spectacularly successful Deaf/Blind woman. She is the child of immigrants from Eritrea who came to the United States to build a better life. Her story is one of battle and triumph. Her work ethic has made her so successful that she was able to attend college right here in Oregon at Lewis and Clark on a full scholarship. Later, she earned a full scholarship at Harvard Law School. It’s a wonderful look into how she was able to negotiate with her parents to let her take flight and soar, some of the battles she fought for full access, and ultimately how she is living a rich and full life. 

This is a must read! 

The Color Monster
By Anna Llenas

The language of feelings is hard for anyone, but for our DHH kids we need to really take the time to teach the vocabulary. It’s never too early to begin learning how to identify our feelings. This colorful book helps kids identify their feelings using colors. Yellow for happy, blue for sad, red for anger, black for fear, and green for calm. It teaches them to separate the different feelings and put them into different jars. It’s a fun and happy way to start talking about and naming feelings in beautiful colorful book.  

Turi’s Book Corner (May 2023)

My Child Has Hearing Loss, Now What?
By Dr. Michelle Hu 

Here it is! The guidebook/workbook that all parents need. With the option of a video series that goes along as well. Featuring a whose who of rock stars in the DHH world. Many of whom I either can call friend or have had the honor of hearing them speak. 

Come along with Mama Hu as she guides you through the steps that all parents must navigate once your child has been diagnosed with hearing loss. 

There are guided exercises to help you move the grief and emotions and she leads you as if you’re visiting with your best friend. She has also provided some very useful forms that you will use over and over on this wonderous journey into the world of early intervention, communication choice, amplification, and life.  

They big take away that those of us who have raised kids with hearing loss. They are kids first, we’ve just taken an unexpected detour to Holland but in the end it is after all a journey not a destination. 

Follow Michelle on Instagram, @mamahuhears, for lots of fun tips and tricks too. 

Astrid the Astronaut
By Rie Neal

This is an early chapter book for young readers 6-9 years old. The first in a series. I found this a great read too! Astrid wants to be the first astronaut with hearing aids and to do it with her best friend Hallie. But when Hallie chooses another afterschool club it throughs Astrid’s plan into a tailspin. This is a book that weaves some of the challenges all kids with hearing loss face and how working together and embracing our differences we can not only solve problems but in the end maybe make a new friend or two. This would be a great book to read together as a family and I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the series. 

Turi’s Book Corner (March 2023)

Show Me a Sign
By Ann Clare LeZotte

This is a book set in the early 19th century that weaves the history of the deaf in Martha’s Vineyard with audism, ableism, and racism expertly woven into this story.

Mary is a strong Deaf character who comes from a loving home. This story is filled with adventure, what happens when people don’t understand our differences, and finally how love triumphs.

This is a chapter book that you can read as family at about fourth to fifth grade level and is a teacher’s choice. It is the first in a series of three and I can’t wait to read the next one.

Never Mind!
By Kelly Brakenhoff 

This is the second in the Duke the Deaf Dog ASL Series.

How often do we say, “Never mind?” It’s the catchphrase we use when we don’t want to stop and make sure our deaf/HH family members miss the conversation or what’s next. This book is great way to help gently remind us that no one likes be left out.

This book comes with bonus videos and lessons at the end too!

Turi’s Book Corner (February 2023)

Deaf Utopia
By Nyle DiMarco
Deaf Utopia is a love letter about all things deaf. He does a wonderful job weaving Deaf Culture throughout the book. His mother has been a tireless advocate him his whole life.  She has gone out of her way to provide a rich life for all of her boys with a strong language base, always making sure everything was accessible in ASL even if she was the one that needed to provide it. He also explores how language depravation affected  
It’s a memoir of pursuing your dreams and living your best life. It’s a wonderful read for any family who may be worried as to what the future may hold.
Take it from me. Just like Nyle’s mom, if we give our kids roots and wings they will soar.

Want a Hug?
By Christine Babinec, MA, LPC, NCC

It’s never too early to start introducing the language and concept of boundaries to our kids.

This beautifully illustrated book is a fun read with kid friendly and rhyming language that is used everyday.

I love the quote on the back of the of the book that sums up this book:

“Yes means Yes and No means No,
tell all your friends to get in the know.
We can all have fun, play, and be friends,
And always ask permission to touch and hold hands.”

Turi’s Book Corner (January 2023)

Can I Tell You About… Auditory Processing Disorder?
By Alyson Mountjoy
Although this book is written for kids age seven and up, this is a wonderful book that explains Auditory Processing Order (APD).
Amy, with her sister Lucy and friend Tom explain how every child with APD is affected differently while helping to explain this very complex condition. It is illustrated and written in kid and adult friendly terms to give us all a sense of what it’s like to live with APD.
While this book was written in the UK it gives some very useful tips for communication and working with people with APD.
A great read indeed!

Mighty Mila
By Katie Petruzziello
This is a beautifully illustrated book with Mila, the main character, who happens to have cochlear implants. It provides empowerment for deaf/hard hearing children while promoting inclusion with typical kids. Included in the book are 38 fun, and educational activities for the whole family.
As Mila says, “Be Unique*Be Yourself*Be Mighty” – a pretty good mantra to live by.