• Advanced Audiology Assoc.

Hearing Loss Book Club

Good reads that educate and inspire


If you or a loved one has hearing loss, you know that it's sometimes hard to share your experience with others.

Many people who have a hearing impairment feel isolated, frustrated, and often when they seek treatment, they eventually feel empowered. And, some of these people just so happen to be accomplished authors who have written about their experiences, sharing anecdotes and insights that can help all of us relate.

As February rolls into March, the snow on the ground tells us it might be awhile before spring urges us outside. So what better time than now to curl up with a good book? Especially one that shares stories (and triumphs) of hearing loss.


Shouting Won't Help: Why I – and 50 Million Other Americans – Can't Hear You

by Katherine Bouton


For twenty-two years, Katherine Bouton had a secret that grew harder to keep every day. An editor at The New York Times, at daily editorial meetings she couldn't hear what her colleagues were saying. She had gone profoundly deaf in her left ear; her right was getting worse. As she once put it, she was "the kind of person who might have used an ear trumpet in the nineteenth century."


Audiologists agree that we're experiencing a national epidemic of hearing loss. At present, 48 million Americans―17 percent of the population―suffer some degree of loss. More than half are under the age of fifty-five. In cases like Katherine Bouton's, who experienced sudden hearing loss at the age of thirty, the cause is unknown.


In this deftly written and deeply felt look at a widespread and widely misunderstood phenomenon, Bouton recounts her own journey into deafness―and her return to the hearing world through the miracles of technology. She speaks with doctors, audiologists, neurobiologists, and others searching for causes and a cure, as well as those who have experienced hearing loss, weaving their stories with her own. Shouting Won't Help is an engaging and informative account of what it's like to live with an invisible disability―a must-read not only for those with hearing loss, who will recognize their stories in Bouton's own, but for their families, friends, employers, and caregivers.


The Way I Hear It: A Life with Hearing Loss

by Gael Hannan


If you think hearing loss is just a condition of old age-think again. In The Way I Hear It, Gael Hannan explodes one myth after another in a witty and insightful journey into life with hearing loss at every age. Blending personal stories with practical strategies, Gael shines a light onto a world of communication challenges: a marriage proposal without hearing aids in, pillow talk and other relationships, raising a child, going to the movies, dining out, ordering at the drive-thru, in the classroom, on the job and hearing technology.

Part memoir, part survival guide, The Way I Hear It offers tips for effective communication, poetic reflections, and heart-warming stories from people she has met in her workshops and at conferences throughout North America. Gael's humorous stories are backed by hearing loss research, and she offers advice on how to bridge the gap between consumer and professional in order to get the best possible hearing health care. 



What Did You Say? An Unexpected Journey Into the World of Hearing Loss

by Monique E. Hammond


Nothing prepared Monique Hammond for her own sudden hearing loss, and her questions to medical professionals often left her with more questions than answers. What Did You Say? is the book she wishes she had when she was coping with and trying to understand her own hearing loss.

Hammond points out that she is not a professional hearing specialist, so her first important message is that people who experience any ear-related symptoms ''must consult their physician or ear specialist for proper diagnosis and treatment.''

From there, she provides organized, easy-to-understand facts and details that enable readers to have educated discussions with their medical professionals. Weaving together her own experiences with a wealth of information, Hammond's wisdom and insights are invaluable, and her story is one that needs to be shared.



A Quiet World: Living with Hearing Loss

by David Myers


More than 350 million people worldwide live with hearing loss. How do these people and their families cope? What are their experiences of pain, humor, and hope? What support do medicine and technology now offer them, and what is on the horizon? In this engaging and practical book, David Myers, who has himself suffered gradual hearing loss, explores the problems faced by the hard of hearing at home and at work and provides information on the new technology and groundbreaking surgical procedures that are available. 

Drawing on both his own experiences and his expertise as a social psychologist, Myers recounts how he has coped with hearing loss and how he has incorporated technological aids into his life. The family and friends of the hard of hearing also face adjustments. Myers addresses their situation and provides advice for them on how best to alert loved ones to a hearing problem, persuade them to seek assistance, and encourage them to adjust to and use hearing aids.


El Deafo

by Cece Bell


A 2015 Newbery Honor Book Going to school and making new friends can be tough. But going to school and making new friends while wearing a bulky hearing aid strapped to your chest? That requires superpowers!


In this funny, poignant graphic novel memoir, author/illustrator Cece Bell chronicles her hearing loss at a young age and her subsequent experiences with the Phonic Ear, a very powerful—and very awkward—hearing aid.

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