Review: El Deafo by Cece Bell

How can we guide children to tell their own stories through mentor texts? This book by Cece Bell is a beautiful example of graphic memoir as mentor text.

Waking Brain Cells

el deafo

El Deafo by Cece Bell

Author/illustrator Cece Bell has created a graphic novel memoir of her loss of hearing as a child. At age four, Cece contracts meningitis and the disease takes away her ability to hear. At first Cece attends school with other children who have hearing loss and wear hearing aids, but then she is sent to first grade with a new super-powered hearing aid, the Phonic Ear. Her new teacher has to wear a microphone, one that she sometimes forgets to take off (even when she uses the bathroom) which leads to some rather interesting sounds! But along with these superpowers come some ethical questions and some technical problems. As Cece copes with her hearing loss, she is also living the normal life of a child, attending school, making new friends, all with a big hearing aid on her chest.

Bell writes with a great honesty here…

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