Chester Fritz Library Updates

News and notes from UND's Chester Fritz Library

12 Books to Celebrate Disability Pride Month

Disability Pride Month is celebrated in July in the United States to commemorate the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990. The ADA defines a disability as “a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity.” We also need to recognize the full diversity of disabilities, both visible and invisible. In the United States, 1 in 4 adults have a disability. This could include vision, thinking, mental health, and movement.

However Disability Pride Month is not about ignoring or minimizing the barriers that people with disabilities face. It is about celebrating, honoring, and promoting people with disabilities. Arda, an influencer with multiple sclerosis says:

“Being proud to be disabled isn’t about liking my disability. It isn’t about pretending that disability doesn’t straight-up suck. Rather, claiming disability pride is a rejection of the notion that I should feel ashamed of my body or my disability. It’s a rejection of the idea that I am less able to contribute and participate in the world.”

Ardra Shephard, “How to Be Proud of What’s Broken This Disability Pride” July 2020

Here are 12 books that everyone should read this July.


Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

All the Light We Cannot See

By Anthony Doerr

physical book and audio book at CFL

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure’s agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall.

In another world in Germany, an orphan boy, Werner, grows up with his younger sister, Jutta. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios, a talent that wins him a place at an elite and brutal military academy. Werner travels to Saint-Malo, where his path converges with Marie-Laure.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for Deaf Republic by Ilya Kaminsky

Deaf Republic: poems

By Ilya Kaminsky

physical book at CFL

Deaf Republic opens in an occupied country in a time of political unrest. When soldiers breaking up a protest kill a deaf boy, Petya, the gunshot becomes the last thing the citizens hear—they all have gone deaf, and their dissent becomes coordinated by sign language. The story follows the private lives of townspeople encircled by public violence. At once a love story, an elegy, and an urgent plea, Ilya Kaminsky’s long-awaited Deaf Republic confronts our time’s vicious atrocities and our collective silence in the face of them

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

By Mark Haddon

physical book at CFL

Despite his overwhelming fear of interacting with people, Christopher, a mathematically-gifted, autistic, fifteen-year-old boy, decides to investigate the murder of a neighbor’s dog and uncovers secret information about his mother.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Six of Crows

By Leigh Bardugo

physical book at CFL

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price–and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone: A convict with a thirst for revenge, a sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager, a runaway with a privileged past, a spy known as the Wraith, a Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums, and a thief with a gift for unlikely escapes. Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction–if they don’t kill each other first.


Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for Disability Visibility edited by Alice Wong

Disability Visibility: First Person Stories from the Twenty-First Century

Edited by Alice Wong

physical book and eBook through CFL

One in five people in the United States lives with a disability. Some disabilities are visible, others less apparent—but all are underrepresented in media and popular culture. This biographical anthology gives a glimpse into the rich complexity of the disabled experience, highlighting the passions, talents, and everyday lives of this community. It invites readers to question their own understandings. It celebrates and documents disability culture in the now. It looks to the future and the past with hope and love.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for The Center Cannot Hold by Elyn R. Saks

The Center Cannot Hold

By Elyn R. Saks

physical book at CFL and eBook through Libby

The Center Cannot Hold is the eloquent, moving story of Elyn’s life, from the first time that she heard voices speaking to her as a young teenager, to attempted suicides in college, through learning to live on her own as an adult in an often terrifying world. Saks discusses frankly the paranoia, the inability to tell imaginary fears from real ones, the voices in her head telling her to kill herself (and to harm others), as well as the incredibly difficult obstacles she overcame to become a highly respected professional.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for Strangers Assume My Girlfriend is My Nurse by Shane Burcaw

Strangers Assume My Girlfriend is My Nurse

By Shane Burcaw

physical book at CFL

With his signature acerbic wit and hilarious voice, twenty-something author, blogger, and entrepreneur Shane Burcaw is back with an essay collection about living a full life in a body that many people perceive as a tragedy. From anecdotes about first introductions where people patted him on the head instead of shaking his hand, to stories of passersby mistaking his able-bodied girlfriend for a nurse, Shane tackles awkward situations and assumptions with humor and grace.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for Being Heumann by Judith Heumann

Being Heumann: An Unrepentant Memoir of a Disability Rights Activist

By Judith Heumann

ebook through CFL

One of the most influential disability rights activists in US history tells her personal story of fighting for the right to receive an education, have a job, and just be human. A story of fighting to belong in a world that wasn’t built for all of us and of one woman’s activism. Paralyzed from polio at eighteen months, Judy’s struggle for equality began early in life. From fighting to attend grade school after being described as a “fire hazard” to later winning a lawsuit against the New York City school system for denying her a teacher’s license because of her paralysis, Judy’s actions set a precedent that fundamentally improved rights for disabled people.


Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco X. Stork

Marcelo in the Real World

By Francisco X. Stork

physical book at CFL

Seventeen-year-old Marcelo is proud of who he is. He often hears music that nobody else can and spots details that others might miss. However, his father views his condition as something that needs to be overcome. When Marcelo is forced to work in the mailroom at a corporate law firm, he befriends his coworker Jasmine. The two of them become involved in a case that opens their eyes to suffering and injustice.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for El Deafo by Cece Bell

El Deafo

By Cece Bell

physical book at CFL

Starting 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. Then Cece makes a startling discovery. With the Phonic Ear she can hear her teacher not just in the classroom, but anywhere her teacher is in the school — in the hallway … in the teacher’s lounge … in the bathroom! This is power, maybe even superpower. Cece is on her way to becoming El Deafo, listener for all.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for I Talk Like a River by Jordan Scott

I Talk Like a River

By Jordan Scott, Illustrated by Sydney Smith

physical book at CFL

All about a boy with a stutter, this autobiographical picture book by Canadian poet Jordan Scott is a must-read. Lyrical and stunning, this book is about a boy whose words get stuck when he’s trying to talk and how his father is able to reach out and empower him to find his voice again.

Link to the Chester Fritz Library catalog record for A Time to Dance by Padma Venkatraman

A Time to Dance

By Padma Venkatraman

physical book at CFL

The moving story of a dancer who refuses to give up after losing her leg. Veda, a classical dance prodigy in India, lives and breathes dance–so when an accident leaves her a below-knee amputee, her dreams are shattered. For a girl who’s grown used to receiving applause for her dance prowess and flexibility, adjusting to a prosthetic leg is painful and humbling. But Veda refuses to let her disability rob her of her dreams, and she starts all over again, taking beginner classes with the youngest dancers. Then Veda meets Govinda, a young man who approaches dance as a spiritual pursuit. As their relationship deepens, Veda reconnects with the world around her, and begins to discover who she is and what dance truly means to her.