Review: El Deafo by Cece Bell

“Our differences are our superpowers.”

Starting and ending the day with a good read will never grow tired on me.El Deafo 6-- bookspoilsStarting at a new school is scary, even more so with a giant hearing aid strapped to your chest! At her old school, everyone in Cece’s class was deaf. Here she is different. She is sure the kids are staring at the Phonic Ear, the powerful aid that will help her hear her teacher. Too bad it also seems certain to repel potential friends.

This funny perceptive graphic novel memoir about growing up hearing impaired is also an unforgettable book about growing up, and all the super and super embarrassing moments along the way.

El Deafo 10-- bookspoils

El Deafo is filled with all the upheavals and self-questioning of Cece Bell’s early childhood, from experiencing crushes, pushy “best friends” and loneliness, to making many discoveries about lip-reading, including how it can create many awkward misread situations.

El Deafo 7-- bookspoils

I’d highly recommended this for fans of Wonder by R.J. Palacio. This graphic novel was the perfect blend between funny, realistic, and enlightening to keep me flipping rapidly from page to page.

It’s totally fascinating, and alarming at times to read through what the author went through in her school education, from dealing with “well-meaning” yet completely ignorant folks coming up and asking straight up rude questions to her face, to describing the many cues to notice to fully understand a conversation piece in real life or on TV.

El Deafo 5-- bookspoils

El Deafo 2-- bookspoils

And to include a few other noteworthy moments:El Deafo 3-- bookspoils

El Deafo 4-- bookspoils

El Deafo 8-- bookspoilsWow. I feel utterly exposed by the above panel.

El Deafo 9-- bookspoilsThis brought to mind a similar exchange in one of my favorite episodes in Master of none season two.


Overall, I enjoyed this middle-grade graphic novel more than I expected with the months of waiting. So the anticipation to finally read El Deafo paid off quite well. Oh, and just throwing it out there: I’d love to see this story turned into a movie in the near future!

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Note: I’m an Amazon Affiliate. If you’re interested in buying El Deafo, just click on the image below to go through my link. I’ll make a small commission!

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2 thoughts on “Review: El Deafo by Cece Bell”

  1. I’m not a big graphic novel reader, but this one is surely interesting. Also, brownie points for referencing Master of None–I think I know the exact episode you’re speaking about, too.

    Liked by 1 person

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