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January 1&15, 2017 BOOKLIST
Find more Blindness Awareness Month
This list was created to commemorate Blindness Awareness Month, which occurs every October, and to build awareness of those with visual loss: more than 38 million Americans over the age of 40 are visually impaired. All of the selections on the list include one or more characters that are blind or have low vision. These books are also available to visually impaired readers from the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (1-888-NLS-READ) or Bookshare in at least one of the following formats: Braille, large-print, audio, or digital download.
Between, Georgia. By Joshilyn Jackson. 2006. Grand Central, paper, $13.99 (9780446699457).
Nonny grew up between feuding adoptive and biological families. When her biological grandmother’s dog attacks her adoptive deaf and blind mother, the feud is rekindled.
The Blind Contessa’s New Machine. By Carey Wallace. 2010. Penguin, paper, $14 (9780143119319).
Italian contessa Carolina Fantoni’s family doesn’t believe her when she tells them she is going blind. She confides in an unconventional inventor, who is inspired to create the first typewriter.
Blindness. By Jose Saramago. 1998. Harcourt, paper, $15 (9780156007757).
This haunting book explores what happens when an epidemic of blindness strikes a city.
The Broken Kingdoms. By N. K. Jemisin. 2010. Little, Brown, paper, $13.99 (9780316043960).The second book in The Inheritance Trilogy, this fantasy features a blind artist named Oree Shoth, who has magical sight.Remedy for Treason. By Caroline Roe. 1998. o.p.
The first book in a series, Chronicles of Isaac of Girona, featuring a blind physician who treats patients while solving mysteries in medieval Spain.Dead Street. By Mickey Spillane. 2007. Hard Case Crime, paper, $6.99 (0-8439-5777-8).
Former policeman Jack Stang discovers that his previous girlfriend, who was presumed dead, is really alive. Although she lost her memories of Stang and is now blind, she is still hunted by her enemies.
Home before Dark. By Susan Wiggs. 2003. MIRA, paper, $15.95 (9780778312482). Photojournalist Jessie Ryder returns to her family after 15 years. Does she dare to share her secrets with them, including her increasing loss of vision?Homer & Langley. By E. L. Doctorow. 2009. Random, paper, $15 (9780812975635). Homer Collyer, who is going blind, lives his life in a crumbling New York City mansion with his eccentric brother. Based on a true story. The Lady and the Unicorn. By Tracy Chevalier. 2004. Plume, paper, $16 (9780452285453).
In the fifteenth century, the artist of the Lady and the Unicorn tapestries becomes intrigued by the weaver’s blind daughter.One Vacant Chair. By Joe Coomer. 2003. Graywolf, paper, $14 (9781555975142).
Sarah travels to Scotland with her eccentric Aunt Edna to scatter her grandmother’s ashes. During the journey, Sarah learns some of Aunt Edna’s secrets, including her love for a visually impaired neighbor.A Personal Devil. By Roberta Gellis. 2001. Forge, paper, $14.95 (9780312875930).
All the women in Magdalene la Bâtarde’s twelfth-century London whorehouse have disabilities; Magdalene becomes embroiled in a murder investigation involving a blind former employee.Sisters. By Danielle Steel. 2007. Delta, paper, $14 (9780385342261).
Four sisters bond after a terrible tragedy results in the death of their mother and the loss of one sister’s vision.Slain in the Spirit. By Melanie Tem. 2002. Leisure, paper, $5.99 (9780843949896).
A legally blind teacher is kidnapped by a delusional former student.Nonfiction
C’mon Papa: Dispatches from a Dad in the Dark. By Ryan Knighton. 2010. o.p.This funny and moving memoir describes a blind father’s first year of fatherhood.Compass Points: How I Lived. By Edward Hoagland. 2001. Vintage, paper, $19 (9780375702402). Author and essayist Hoagland’s 11 interconnected biological essays tell his life story, including his vision loss.Crashing Through: The Extraordinary True Story of the Man Who Dared to See. By Robert Kurson. 2007. Random, paper, $16 (9780812973686).
Mike May lost his vision to a chemical explosion at the age of three. As an adult, May is given the opportunity to see again with a risky stem-cell transplant. Cry Rape: The True Story of One Woman’s Harrowing Quest for Justice. By Bill Lueders. 2006. Univ. of Wisconsin, paper, $19.95 (9780299219642).
The powerful account of a blind woman who was raped in her home and then victimized by the legal system.
My Path Leads to Tibet: The Inspiring Story of How One Young Blind Woman Brought Hope to the Blind Children of Tibet. Sabriye Tenberken. 2003. o.p.A young blind woman journeys to Tibet to establish a school for the blind.A Sense of the World: How a Blind Man Became History’s Greatest Traveler. By Jason Roberts. 2006. HarperPerennial, paper, $14.99 (9780007161263). A biography of the nineteenth-century adventurer and naval officer, James Holman, who traveled alone around the world despite being blind.This Lovely Life: A Memoir of Premature Motherhood. By Vicki Forman. 2009. Harcourt, paper, $13.95 (9780547232751).The honest account of a mother whose child was born at 23 weeks and subsequently became blind and multiply-disabled.Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero. By Michael Hingson and Susy Flory. 2011. Thomas Nelson, paper, $16.99 (9781400204724).
A true account of a blind man, his guide dog, and their harrowing escape from the World Trade Center.Debbie Siegel is an instructor at The Hadley School for the Blindin Winnetka, IL. She teaches courses in Braille, abacus, literature-nonfiction, and macular degeneration. She received her master’s in teaching the visually impaired from Michigan State University. She is currently completing her master’s in library science from Dominican University.Founded in 1920, The Hadley School for the Blind is the largest provider of distance education for individuals who are blind or visually impaired, their families, and blindness service providers, serving 10,000 students each year in more than 100 countries.
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