Print page

Books with positive images of disability in 2017


Here are 12 books that we think show positive images of disability, as well as titles that may prove useful in discussing disability and diversity.

They are all brilliant reads that were our Bookmark Books of the Month throughout 2017.

  • The Goldfish Boy

    Author: Lisa Thompson
    Publisher: Scholastic

    Matthew has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Can he help an investigation into the abduction of a child, perhaps without even leaving his house? A captivating read, combining a compelling whodunit with an engaging protagonist.

  • Quiet!

    Author: Kate Alizadeh
    Publisher: Child’s Play

    A small child takes us on an auditory tour of her home in this delightful picture of family life, ingeniously interpreted through its sounds. It's a book that radiates comfort, security, warmth and love.

  • The Barefoot Book of Children

    Author: Tessa Strickland Kate DePalma and David Dean
    Publisher: Barefoot Books

    This is a beautifully comprehensive and thought-provoking picture of the many different ways in which people live around the world. A book to dip into time and time again; a treasure trove of discussion topics, but also an aesthetic delight.

  • The State of Grace

    Author: Rachael Lucas
    Publisher: Pan Macmillan

    Grace is nearly 16, and like many girls her age, has a lot on her mind - but they're heightened by the fact that Grace has Asperger's syndrome. An absorbing story of first love, friendship and family tension; any young reader can relate to Grace.

  • Short

    Author: Holly Goldberg Sloan
    Publisher: Scholastic

    Julia has always been very short for her height. It only started to feel like a problem when she overheard her parents discussing it. Could it be that being unusually short is something to worry about? A gentle story, told with tenderness and humour.

  • S.C.R.E.A.M.: The Mummy’s Revenge

    Author: Andrew Beasley
    Publisher: Usborne

    This terrifically exciting book has it all – mystery, creepy paranormal baddies and lashings of sharp humour. You’ll be right there with Charley and Billy as they outwit the grown-ups and use their wits in their battle to beat the baddies.

  • Zeki Can Swim

    Author: Anna McQuinn Illustrator: Ruth Hearson
    Publisher: Alanna Books

    It is an exciting day. Zeki loves the water and today Dad’s taking him to his baby swimming class. Bright and colourful, this picture book for the very young is an utter delight, with a naturally diverse and subtly inclusive cast of characters.

  • A Storm of Strawberries

    Author: Jo Cotterill
    Publisher: Piccadilly Press

    Twelve-year-old Darby is excited – it is the weekend of the family's chocolate hunt. However, beloved sister Kaydee has suddenly brought home a friend for the weekend. Plus her parents (who run the family's strawberry farm) seem distracted, increasingly preoccupied with news that a major storm is brewing. Does no one realise how important the event is to Dar…

  • Ava’s Spectacular Spectacles

    Author: Alice Rex and Angela Perrini
    Publisher: New Frontier

    When Ava doesn’t want to wear her glasses at school one day, her quick-witted teacher offers some wise words of advice about their importance. The reimagined fairy tales are told with plenty of humour and zest.

  • Optimists Die First

    Author: Susin Nielsen
    Publisher: Andersen Press

    Petula's life is ruled by anxiety, fear and pessimism after her little sister died two years before. Then she meets Jacob, and an unconventional love story unfolds. Another five star read from Susin Nielsen: one of the most talented teen writers working today.

  • Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus

    Author: Dusti Bowling
    Publisher: Sterling Children’s Books

    Aven’s dad has just been offered a new job, managing a rundown theme park. And it turns out the theme park conceals some surprising secrets… With likeable characters and quirky humour, readers are likely to find this an inspiring and charming read. 

  • You Choose In Space

    Author: Pippa Goodhart Illustrator: Nick Sharratt
    Publisher: Puffin

    You choose how this story unfolds, so a new adventure can be enjoyed each time of reading. A spectacular book to stimulate creative storytelling and language development, full of vibrant illustration. Not to be missed!