YA Book Lists: Teens that Overcome Disabilities

[Printable book list]

Josh Berk / YP FIC BERK
The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin
Will Halpin leaves his deaf school because he is tired of playing the "Deaf Enough" game. He's starting in a 'normal' high school where he has to sit at the sidelines of each class to read lips of the teacher and his classmates. Being deaf and overweight, Will is used to being invisible, but all this changes with two things: making friends with someone as unpopular as him and deciding to solve a murder mystery.

Kelly L. Bingham / YP FIC BINGHAM
Shark Girl
After a shark attack causes the amputation of her right arm, 15-year-old Jane, an aspiring artist, struggles to come to terms with her loss and the changes it imposes on her day-to-day life and her plans for the future.

Formerly Shark Girl
Surviving a shark attack that cost her an arm, Jane, an aspiring artist, reevaluates her ambitions and sense of identity while harboring a crush on her attractive tutor and considering a relationship with a boy from her science class.

Beverly Brenna / YP FIC BRENNA
Waiting for No One
Taylor Jane Simon, an 18-year-old girl with Asperger's Syndrome, struggles for independence and self-control as she deals with the effects of the illness on her daily life.

Karen Cushman / YP FIC CUSHMAN
Alchemy and Meggy Swann
In 1573, the crippled, scorned, and destitute Meggy Swann goes to London, where she meets her father, an impoverished alchemist, and eventually discovers that although her legs are bent and weak, she has many other strengths.

Sarah Dooley / YP FIC DOOLEY
Livvie Owen Lived Here
Fourteen-year-old Livvie Owen, who has autism, and her family have been forced to move frequently because of her outbursts, but when they face eviction again, Livvie is convinced she has a way to get back to a house where they were all happy, once.

Janet Edwards / YP FIC EDWARDS
Earth Girl
Abandoned on Earth because of her inability to survive on other planets, Jarra crafts a fake background for herself to join a class of norms who are excavating the dangerous ruins of the old cities.

Laura Ellen / YP FIC ELLEN
Blind Spot
Tricia Farni was last seen alive the night she fought with Roswell Hart — a night Roz can't remember. Can Roz piece together the events of that night, despite the eye disease that robs her of most of her vision, in order to clear her name and find a murderer?

Sharon Flake / YP FIC FLAKE
Pinned
Adonis is smart, intellectually gifted and born without legs; Autumn is strong, a great wrestler, and barely able to read in ninth grade — but Autumn is attracted to Adonis and determined to make him a part of her life whatever he or her best friend thinks.

Paul Griffin / YP FIC GRIFFIN
Orange Houses
Tamika, a 15-year-old hearing-impaired girl; Jimmi, an 18-year-old veteran who stopped taking his antipsychotic medication; and 16-year-old Fatima, an illegal immigrant from Africa, meet and connect in their Bronx, New York, neighborhood, with devastating results.

April Henry / YP FIC HENRY
Girl Stolen
When an impulsive carjacking turns into a kidnapping, Griffin, a high school dropout, finds himself more in sympathy with his wealthy, blind victim, 16-year-old Cheyenne, than with his greedy father.

Juan Felipe Herrera / YP FIC HERRERA
Skatefate
Lucky Z, a Chicano foster child, loved living on the edge until a drag racing accident left him in a wheelchair. But as he struggles to find his place in a new high school, he begins writing poetry everywhere about anything, and in finding his voice he also discovers the beauty around him.

Anthony John / YP FIC JOHN
Five Flavors of Dumb
Eighteen-year-old Piper becomes the manager for her classmates' popular rock band, called Dumb, giving her the chance to prove her capabilities to her parents and others, if only she can get the band members to get along.

Harriet McBryde Johnson YP FIC JOHNSON
Accidents of Nature
Having always prided herself on blending in with "normal" people despite her cerebral palsy, 17-year-old Jean begins to question her role in the world while attending a summer camp for children with disabilities.

Julia Keller / YP FIC KELLER
Back Home
Thirteen-year-old Rachel Browning understands that her father will be different after being injured in the Iraq War, but no one is prepared for the impact that his traumatic brain injury and other wounds have on the entire family.

Saundra Mitchell / YP FIC MITCHELL
The Elementals
In 1917, Kate Witherspoon, who has lived a bohemian life with her artist parents, goes to Los Angeles where she meets crippled Midwestern farm boy Julian Birch, another runaway, and together they realize they have the ability to triumph over death and time.

YP FIC OWNING
Owning It: Stories About Teens With Disabilities
Ten stories of teenagers facing all of the usual challenges of school, parents, boyfriends and girlfriends, plus the additional complications that come with having a physical or psychological disability.

Carol Plum-Ucci / YP FIC PLUMUCCI
Following Christopher Creed
Legally-blind college reporter Mike Mavic hopes to get a story about a body found in Steepleton, believed to be that of long-missing teen Christopher Creed, but finds something odd about the town, including Justin Creed's obsessive drive to learn what really happened to his older brother.

Frank Portman / YP FIC PORTMAN
Andromeda Klein
High school sophomore Andromeda, an outcast because she studies the occult and has a hearing impairment and other disabilities, overcomes grief over terrible losses by enlisting others' help in her plan to save library books — and finds a kindred spirit along the way.

Susan Richards Shreve / YP FIC SHREVE
The Lovely Shoes
In 1950s Ohio, ninth-grader Franny feels isolated and self-conscious at high school because of her deformed leg and feet, but her irrepressibly high-spirited mother is determined to find shoes for Franny to wear at the school dances.

Francisco X. Stork YP FIC STORK
Marcelo in the Real World
Marcelo Sandoval, a 17-year-old boy on the high-functioning end of the autistic spectrum, faces new challenges, including romance and injustice, when he goes to work for his father in the mailroom of a corporate law firm.

Terry Trueman / YP FIC TRUEMAN
Life Happens Next
Shawn McDaniel, almost 15, cannot speak and has no control over his body due to severe cerebral palsy, but he forms a strong connection with his mother's cousin Debi, who has Down Syndrome, and her dog Rusty.

Wendelin Van Draanen / YP FIC VANDRAAN
The Running Dream
When a school bus accident leaves 16-year-old Jessica an amputee, she returns to school with a prosthetic limb and her track team finds a wonderful way to help rekindle her dream of running again.

Eric Walters / YP FIC WALTERS
Special Edward
In an attempt to lower expectations and gain extra time for tests, Edward tries to fake a special education designation.