Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Review: El Deafo by Cece Bell



El DeafoEl Deafo by Cece Bell
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Cece lost her hearing after getting severely ill at a very young age. As part of her recovery she now has to wear a hearing aid for the rest of her life. This is the story of how the change affected her life at home and school. How it affected her self esteem and her friendships.

I had no idea this was a biography in graphic novel form. This was my first time being introduced to a character who was deaf. I don't know how to talk about my feelings without being offensive to people who are more familiar with it, so please accept my apologies in advance and feel free to correct/educate me in a constructive manner.

Some of the things I liked about this book was how Cece's feelings were relatable. She experienced rejection and stereotype just like other kids her age but I suspect hers was worse. For example some people upon realizing she needed hearing aid thought they had to speak to her differently since she "couldn't" hear.

One thing that surprised me (and I suspect it was because I didn't know any better) was her reluctance to learn sign language. I assumed (and was wrong) that people who were deaf must have been grateful for the fact that sign language exists. But no. Just like everything else in life, some people welcomed it, others like Cece preferred the use of their hearing aid. In the book she actually got upset about it so many times until finally she made her mom understand her feelings.

One last thing I want to mention about the book is how much I adored Cece's alter ego super-girl El Deafo. She was always there for Cece and I wish I had one when I was a kid.
I really recommend this book.


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