13 Apr
My Current Reading List

El Deafo

Train Gone, Sorry

Touch The Future

The Kinda Fella I Am - 6/8/23

A short collection of stories by Raymond Luczak all surrounding the topic of sex and Disability. Each character embodies some physical disability and comments on the struggles to be seen as normal and sexually appealing, especially with regards to kink, where disabled people are almost never assumed to exist. Very casual and sensual writing style, pornographic at times but the political backbone of the whole work makes this an interesting and genuinely refereshing read.

6/01/23 - Perseverance

A short collection of poetry by Raymond Antrobus. Heavy themes of Deafness and cultural identity as a Jamaican-British Deaf man. I found the poetry to be very sharp and purposeful with a lot f emotion and creativity behind it. 

5/25/23 - You Never Know

Connie Briscoe's first venture into fiction writing. She tells a story about a "Hearing Impaired" black woman who leaves an abusive boyfriend for a seemingly perfect man. Things take a turn as the relationship turns sour and controlling and Alexis, the main character must deal with her ever growing suspicions about this man and what he might be capable of. Themes of internalized Audism, ASL mentioned in a good light, POC author.

5/4/23 - Sounds like Home

Mary Herring Wright's Biography about growing up in the south as a Deaf black woman. This biography more than any other I have read is valuable in that it speaks on the difference between white and black Deaf institutions during the dark ages of the Milan decision. 

5/4/23 - Deaf Utopia

Nyle DiMarco's biography centering on his experiences on the gameshows "America's next top model" as well as "dancing with the stars." A really well written book with lots of great anecdotes and visible passion for the Deaf community woven into the story.

5/4/23 - A Country of Glass

This is a poetry collection by Sarah Katz. She will be visiting our book club on the 14th this month to talk more about her work so I will include those comments here!

5/3/23 - Tripping the Tale Fantastic

This is a collection of short stories by Deaf+ authors with a variety of themes generally in the sci fi - fantasy genre. There is quite a range in quality for these stories. Some of them are genuinely imaginative, well written and present interesting ideas while others seem like they were written in one afternoon on a whim. 

The Vibrating Mouth, The Spirit Box, and The Dreaded Quiet were my top three favorite stories overall. They were well written, creative and held my attention the whole way through. I like Th Vibrating Mouth for its take on cultural perspectives, language use and for making me think more than any other story in this collection. The spirit box was my favorite all around narrative. I think it obscured just the right amount to keep you wondering while still giving you a substantial story to digest all the while. It was a very nostalgic feeling read that really captivated me just by virtue of the authors writing skills alone. Finally, the Dreadful Quiet was a great example of the abstract cosmic style horror that I love. You come out of it understanding that the story was something of a dream or metaphor but the reality of the story is it's own kind of hell. A great example of a pure expression of Deaf experiences being made into a great narrative work.

the Hearing Aid, the Family Dog, The Climax, and Understanding were the other stories that I can safely say I enjoyed specifically as Deaf fiction. I think they each touch on Deaf experiences and frustrations in their own unique ways and I came out of them appreciating the underlying message. 

4/3/23 - TRU BIZ

Plenty has already been said about Tru Biz, but gosh darn it this is my blog and I have a few comments to pile on top of the heap. Tru Biz represents to me- the spirit of what i want in Deaf literature. This was the first novel I had read which centered the Deaf experience as a characteristic of the overall story rather than making it the point of the whole thing. This is what I want to see more of! No more Deafness as a gimmick, archetype or problem to be solved. Deafness is an environment to explore which can tell universally relatable stories- and Sara Novic finally gave us that.

     In terms of story, Tru Biz is a serviceable coming of age story intersected with a slice of life drama. As someone who doesn't go out of their way to read many novels like this, I really enjoyed it! There are more dense and complicated stories out there, but I was happy to read an easily consumable novel that did a damn good job of exploring the politics of my community while making me care about its characters and plot. I wonder what others thought of the terrorism plot at the end though... 

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