Listen: How Evelyn Glennie, a Deaf Girl, Changed Percussion

Dial. Apr. 2022. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780593109694.
Gr 3-6–The life of deaf percussionist Evelyn Glennie dances and swirls across the page in this vibrantly illustrated picture book biography that is perfect for elementary school readers learning about music and fascinating women. Glennie’s story begins in Scotland, where she can play music by ear by the age of 10. Soon thereafter, she loses her hearing, and it seems as if she will lose access to music, too. A compassionate teacher, Ron Forbes, understands that Glennie feels the music with every part of her being, and she becomes an essential musician in any percussion section. This is more than a story of overcoming discrimination due to disability—Stocker captures something about the artist’s need to be herself, regardless of abilities. Glennie is making music to this day. Lush brushstrokes, delicate character portraits, and warm colors make this a beautiful title to explore, and the ample text and sweet author’s note ensures that Glennie’s story will have an impact on readers.
VERDICT An excellent addition to biography sections, especially for musical readers looking to feel the music and not just hear it.

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