Top 5 disability inclusive books

To mark National Storytelling Week, Scope’s blog looks at five books that feature disability.

The charity found in a Twitter poll that three people in four want to see more inclusion of disability in literature. Scope therefore continues to ask for better representation. It celebrates great work, which it wants to see more of (see its Stories Hub). Dan White, author of the Department of Ability comic book, has put the list together. His own book features superheroes whose impairments are their greatest superpower. Dan’s list of champion books is:

5. ‘Mr Millet’s farm’ by Catherine Lord

Dan says: “Catherine writes with complete charm and understands both her subject and the little eyes who read it. “It’s the story of Raj, a wheelchair user and the different animals that reside on the farm. “The moral of the story is that it’s great to be unique and be who you are. The book aims to help raise awareness of disabilities from a young age.”

4. ‘Synthesis: Weave’ by Deane Saunders-Stowe

Described as ‘disability sci-fi’, Dan says: “[This book] shows a world in the future where disability and wheelchairs still have issues, but things have moved on.”

3. ‘The Christmasaurus’ by Tom Fletcher

In this book the main character uses a wheelchair but his disability is only broached almost a quarter of the way through and then it is dealt with swiftly and to the point.  Dan said: “It was generally laugh out loud funny, the main character William is hilarious and a character in his own right.” He continues: “Diversity? Inclusion? Laughs? Nailed it.”

2. ‘The Art of Disability’ by David Proud

Dan describes this book as: “Essentially a guide book for media types, The Art of Disability is a painstakingly sourced and written piece on the power of representation, its importance and how inclusion can be achieved in the wider media world.”

1. ‘The Spiral Cage’ by Al Davison

This is described by Dan as ‘a graphic novel of such diverse beauty and power’. Dan says: “Al the author gives you his life of being born with Spina Bifida from birth to present day in a series of incredible, stark, beautiful black and white images.” The book is out of print but there is talk about a sequel and possible reprint.
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