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February 2018 Selections

This month, we’ll read books about experiences relating to chronic illness. Every day, people manage chronic illness, both visible and invisible. It's part of their lives but not what defines them. This topic is one that is personal to both DBC moderators and members, and we’re looking forward to sharing some of those stories as well throughout the month.

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adult fiction selection:

Left neglected by lisa genova


From the publisher: 

Sarah Nickerson is like any other career-driven supermom in Welmont, the affluent Boston suburb where she leads a hectic but charmed life with her husband Bob, faithful nanny, and three children - Lucy, Charlie, and nine-month-old Linus.
Between recruiting the best and brightest minds as the vice president of human resources at Berkley Consulting; shuttling the kids to soccer, day care, and piano lessons; convincing her son’s teacher that he may not, in fact, have ADD; and making it home in time for dinner, it’s a wonder this over-scheduled, over-achieving Harvard graduate has time to breathe.

A self-confessed balloon about to burst, Sarah miraculously manages every minute of her life like an air traffic controller. Until one fateful day, while driving to work and trying to make a phone call, she looks away from the road for one second too long. In the blink of an eye, all the rapidly moving parts of her jam-packed life come to a screeching halt.

A traumatic brain injury completely erases the left side of her world, and for once, Sarah relinquishes control to those around her, including her formerly absent mother. Without the ability to even floss her own teeth, she struggles to find answers about her past and her uncertain future.

Now, as she wills herself to regain her independence and heal, Sarah must learn that her real destiny - her new, true life - may in fact lie far from the world of conference calls and spreadsheets. And that a happiness and peace greater than all the success in the world is close within reach, if only she slows down long enough to notice.

middle grade fiction selection:

Caleb and kit by beth Vrabel

Note: Some members of the DBC Team received copies of Caleb and Kit from Running Press Kids for free. Copies were received after the selection had been made and both the author and publisher were contacted with a notification. Thank you to Running Press Kids for supporting our reading community!

From the publisher:

Twelve-year-old Caleb is shorter, frailer, and more protected than most kids his age. That's because he has cystic fibrosis, a diagnosis meaning lungs that fill with mucus and a shortened lifespan. Caleb tries not to let his disorder define him, but it can be hard with an overprotective, prying mom and a big brother who is perfect in every way. 

Then Caleb meets Kit-a vibrant, independent, and free girl who lives in a house in the woods-and his world changes instantly. Kit reads Caleb's palm and tells him they are destined to become friends. She calls birds down from the sky, turns every day into an adventure, and never sees him as his disorder. Her magic is contagious, making Caleb question the rules and order in his life. But being Kit's friend means embracing deception and, more and more, danger. Soon Caleb will have to decide if his friendship with Kit is really what's best for him-or Kit.

a note about picture book selections

Our children’s literature team was unable to find picture books that meet our standards for quality while keeping to our specific theme of chronic illness. Because we only recommend books that we love, we won’t be announcing a list of picture books to read in February. If you’re a DBC reader and know of a great picture book relating to chronic illness, please reach out to us! In the meantime, we’ll be curating a list of fabulous picture books for our March theme — to be announced soon!