100 books like Far from the Tree

By Andrew Solomon,

Here are 100 books that Far from the Tree fans have personally recommended if you like Far from the Tree. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Demystifying Disability: What to Know, What to Say, and How to Be an Ally

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Author Of The Little Gate-Crasher: The Life and Photos of Mace Bugen

From my list on disability awareness.

Who am I?

I'm writer, educator, disability advocate, and mother of a teenage son with multiple disabilities. Since my son’s diagnosis with autism at age three, I've been on a quest to not only understand the way that his unique brain works, but also to advocate for a more just and equitable world for people with disabilities and their families. When researching my book The Little Gate-Crasher, I discovered how much my great-grandmother was a powerful advocate for her son Mace who was born with a form of dwarfism. Our society has evolved in the last one hundred years in terms of inclusion and accessibility—and yet, people with disabilities and their loved ones are often isolated.

Gabrielle's book list on disability awareness

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Why did Gabrielle love this book?

Written with clear down-to-earth language, disability advocate Emily Ladau had written a guide that could revolutionize the way that people think about disability and how to interact with people who have disabilities. Because our society has kept people with disabilities separate for so long, this kind of book is essential in leading us towards inclusion.

By Emily Ladau,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Demystifying Disability as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An approachable guide to being a thoughtful, informed ally to disabled people, with actionable steps for what to say and do (and what not to do) and how you can help make the world a more inclusive place
 
ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: NPR, Booklist • “A candid, accessible cheat sheet for anyone who wants to thoughtfully join the conversation . . . Emily makes the intimidating approachable and the complicated clear.”—Rebekah Taussig, author of Sitting Pretty: The View from My Ordinary, Resilient, Disabled Body

People with disabilities are the world’s largest minority, an estimated 15 percent…


Book cover of From Longing to Belonging: A Practical Guide to Including People with Disabilities and Mental Health Conditions in Your Faith Community

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Author Of The Little Gate-Crasher: The Life and Photos of Mace Bugen

From my list on disability awareness.

Who am I?

I'm writer, educator, disability advocate, and mother of a teenage son with multiple disabilities. Since my son’s diagnosis with autism at age three, I've been on a quest to not only understand the way that his unique brain works, but also to advocate for a more just and equitable world for people with disabilities and their families. When researching my book The Little Gate-Crasher, I discovered how much my great-grandmother was a powerful advocate for her son Mace who was born with a form of dwarfism. Our society has evolved in the last one hundred years in terms of inclusion and accessibility—and yet, people with disabilities and their loved ones are often isolated.

Gabrielle's book list on disability awareness

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Why did Gabrielle love this book?

Faith communities can play an essential role in the life of people with disabilities—yet many clergy, educators, and lay leaders are still unsure about how to create inclusive and accessible congregations. Christensen, an expert in the faith inclusion world, shares the way to create communities of belonging for all people.

By Shelly Christensen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked From Longing to Belonging as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Inclusion is More Than Being––a House of Prayer for All Peoples



Everyone wants to belong—in their community at large and especially their faith-based community. Nearly 20 percent of people live with a disability or mental health condition, which means so many families—maybe even yours—are dealing with these issues for their loved one. The one place everyone should feel like they belong is their house of worship and other faith-based community organizations. From Longing to Belonging is a new approach to inclusion. Author Shelly Christensen, M.A., a leader in faith community disability inclusion, provides step-by-step guidance to any faith-based organization committed…


Book cover of Disability Visibility: First-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Century

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Author Of The Little Gate-Crasher: The Life and Photos of Mace Bugen

From my list on disability awareness.

Who am I?

I'm writer, educator, disability advocate, and mother of a teenage son with multiple disabilities. Since my son’s diagnosis with autism at age three, I've been on a quest to not only understand the way that his unique brain works, but also to advocate for a more just and equitable world for people with disabilities and their families. When researching my book The Little Gate-Crasher, I discovered how much my great-grandmother was a powerful advocate for her son Mace who was born with a form of dwarfism. Our society has evolved in the last one hundred years in terms of inclusion and accessibility—and yet, people with disabilities and their loved ones are often isolated.

Gabrielle's book list on disability awareness

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Why did Gabrielle love this book?

Alice Wong is an incredible writer and self-advocate and has put together an anthology of writers who share first-person experiences through. Variety of formats, including essays and interviews. It is eye-opening for anyone who is not disabled and also presents all of the work that our society needs to do to create accessibility and disability justice.

By Alice Wong,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Disability Visibility as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Disability rights activist Alice Wong brings tough conversations to the forefront of society with this anthology. It sheds light on the experience of life as an individual with disabilities, as told by none other than authors with these life experiences. It's an eye-opening collection that readers will revisit time and time again.” —Chicago Tribune

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. Activist Alice Wong brings together this urgent, galvanizing collection of contemporary essays by disabled people, just in time for…


Book cover of We Walk: Life with Severe Autism

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Author Of The Little Gate-Crasher: The Life and Photos of Mace Bugen

From my list on disability awareness.

Who am I?

I'm writer, educator, disability advocate, and mother of a teenage son with multiple disabilities. Since my son’s diagnosis with autism at age three, I've been on a quest to not only understand the way that his unique brain works, but also to advocate for a more just and equitable world for people with disabilities and their families. When researching my book The Little Gate-Crasher, I discovered how much my great-grandmother was a powerful advocate for her son Mace who was born with a form of dwarfism. Our society has evolved in the last one hundred years in terms of inclusion and accessibility—and yet, people with disabilities and their loved ones are often isolated.

Gabrielle's book list on disability awareness

Gabrielle Kaplan-Mayer Why did Gabrielle love this book?

As a mother of a child with severe autism, I am grateful to Amy Lutz for writing a book that captures our family's unique challenges. Too often, media focuses on people with autism who need a lower level of support and it can feel like life with severe autism is being overlooked. Lutz’s beautiful writing gives you a window into a much-needed read.

By Amy S. F. Lutz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked We Walk as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this collection of beautiful and raw essays, Amy S. F. Lutz writes openly about her experience-the positive and the negative-as a mother of a now twenty-one-year-old son with severe autism. Lutz's human emotion drives through each page and challenges commonly held ideas that define autism either as a disease or as neurodiversity. We Walk is inspired by her own questions: What is the place of intellectually and developmentally disabled people in society? What responsibilities do we, as citizens and human beings, have to one another? Who should decide for those who cannot decide for themselves? What is the meaning…


Book cover of Hidden Valley Road: Inside the Mind of an American Family

Stephen Trimble Author Of The Mike File: A Story of Grief and Hope

From my list on families struggling with mental health.

Who am I?

I’d been writing for forty years before I could write about the biggest story in my life. My 25 non-fiction books about the American West—landscape, Native peoples, conservation—are a joy to research, photograph, and create. But I had unfinished emotional business: my mentally ill brother who left home when I was six, never to return. After everyone in my family was gone, it was finally safe. I began to recreate my brother’s life, reveling in research. I know how to do that. Opening myself emotionally to the heart of my family story took far longer. Empathy is a choice, and I’ve made my choice.

Stephen's book list on families struggling with mental health

Stephen Trimble Why did Stephen love this book?

In many ways, my book is a prologue to Robert Kolker’s extraordinary book. When Mike left our home, he moved to the Colorado State Hospital, in 1957, just a few years before the Galvin brothers began to rotate through the same wards. My mother dealt with the guilt and shame, stigma and chaos of one child with schizophrenia. The Galvins had ten boys and two girls, and six of the boys were diagnosed with schizophrenia. Unimaginable. I feel especially close to their story because I went to college in Colorado Springs. I rode my bike near the Galvin home on Hidden Valley Road. Even the brain research ending Kolker’s book on a note of hope happens in Denver at the University of Colorado. Like mine, this is a Colorado story. 

By Robert Kolker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hidden Valley Road as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • OPRAH’S BOOK CLUB PICK • ONE OF GQ's TOP 50 BOOKS OF LITERARY JOURNALISM IN THE 21st CENTURY • The heartrending story of a midcentury American family with twelve children, six of them diagnosed with schizophrenia, that became science's great hope in the quest to understand the disease.

"Reads like a medical detective journey and sheds light on a topic so many of us face: mental illness." —Oprah Winfrey

Don and Mimi Galvin seemed to be living the American dream. After World War II, Don's work with the Air Force brought them to Colorado,…


Book cover of No One Cares about Crazy People: My Family and the Heartbreak of Mental Illness in America

JoEllen Notte Author Of In It Together: Navigating Depression with Partners, Friends, and Family

From my list on helping you talk about mental health.

Who am I?

According to my mother, my first words were, “what’s that?” and I believe that’s indicative of the level of curiosity with which I try to approach life. That curiosity led me to write books about how we can better love ourselves and each other when depression is gumming up the works. Talking about mental illness is hard, and I aim to make it easier. I’m not a doctor or therapist. I am best described as a “sex writer with a theatre degree” and I like to say my work focuses on sex, mental health, and how none of us are broken.  

JoEllen's book list on helping you talk about mental health

JoEllen Notte Why did JoEllen love this book?

It can be incredibly frustrating to try to talk about how broken the mental healthcare system is (especially in the United States). Most people have no frame of reference for it.

Similarly the impact mental illness can have on family and loved ones is, for many, uncharted territory. Enter No One Care About Crazy People.

Powers expertly weaves the history of mental healthcare in America together with the story of his family’s battles with schizophrenia. The result is a heartbreaking and beautiful and horrifying and eye-opening book that leaves you better equipped to have those frustrating conversations. 

I’m not going to lie to you, this is a hard one to read. It hurts. That said, it is one of my all-time favorite books.

By Ron Powers,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked No One Cares about Crazy People as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Extraordinary and courageous . . . No doubt if everyone were to read this book, the world would change."---New York Times Book Review

New York Times-bestselling author Ron Powers' critically acclaimed narrative of the social history of mental illness in America paired with the deeply personal story of his two sons' battles with schizophrenia.

From the centuries of torture of "lunatiks" at Bedlam Asylum to the infamous eugenics era to the follies of the anti-psychiatry movement to the current landscape in which too many families struggle alone to manage afflicted love ones, Powers limns our fears and myths about mental…


Book cover of Mad in America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine, and the Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill

Stephen Trimble Author Of The Mike File: A Story of Grief and Hope

From my list on families struggling with mental health.

Who am I?

I’d been writing for forty years before I could write about the biggest story in my life. My 25 non-fiction books about the American West—landscape, Native peoples, conservation—are a joy to research, photograph, and create. But I had unfinished emotional business: my mentally ill brother who left home when I was six, never to return. After everyone in my family was gone, it was finally safe. I began to recreate my brother’s life, reveling in research. I know how to do that. Opening myself emotionally to the heart of my family story took far longer. Empathy is a choice, and I’ve made my choice.

Stephen's book list on families struggling with mental health

Stephen Trimble Why did Stephen love this book?

Robert Whitaker’s books inform my work. Both Mad in America and Anatomy of an Epidemic provided crucial policy background as I searched for my brother's personhood. Whitaker’s deep research and ferocious insistence that we rethink psychiatric care guided me into the world of mental illness, the history of treatment, and the controversy over forcing medication on unwilling people. I sympathize with Whitaker and the people who believe anti-psychotics make things worse. But I also meet many with diagnoses who believe in the mantra, “take your meds.” Best practices cannot be one-size (pill)-fits all. I end my own book by imagining the best possible world for mental health treatment—guided both by Whitaker and his most vehement critic, E. Fuller Torrey.

By Robert Whitaker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mad in America as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Schizophrenics in the United States currently fare worse than patients in the world's poorest countries. In Mad in America, medical journalist Robert Whitaker argues that modern treatments for the severely mentally ill are just old medicine in new bottles, and that we as a society are deeply deluded about their efficacy. The widespread use of lobotomies in the 1920s and 1930s gave way in the 1950s to electroshock and a wave of new drugs. In what is perhaps Whitaker's most damning revelation, Mad in America examines how drug companies in the 1980s and 1990s skewed their studies to prove that…


Book cover of Singermann

Stephen Trimble Author Of The Mike File: A Story of Grief and Hope

From my list on families struggling with mental health.

Who am I?

I’d been writing for forty years before I could write about the biggest story in my life. My 25 non-fiction books about the American West—landscape, Native peoples, conservation—are a joy to research, photograph, and create. But I had unfinished emotional business: my mentally ill brother who left home when I was six, never to return. After everyone in my family was gone, it was finally safe. I began to recreate my brother’s life, reveling in research. I know how to do that. Opening myself emotionally to the heart of my family story took far longer. Empathy is a choice, and I’ve made my choice.

Stephen's book list on families struggling with mental health

Stephen Trimble Why did Stephen love this book?

When I began my book, I wanted to know who my mother was at 22, when she left a brief disaster of a first marriage with an infant—my brother, Mike. Mom grew up in Montana, embedded in immigrant Jewish life. My great-uncle, Myron Brinig, wrote about that life and our family in Singermann, his first book (now, alas, an obscure classic available mostly in libraries). In early drafts of my book, I included far too much family history, with Myron as my guide. I loved the detail; my early readers did not. So my published book stays close to the core emotional story. And yet Singermann opens a window not just on our family but others with complicated immigration stories, dark secrets, and intergenerational mental illness.

By Myron Brinig,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Singermann as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

hardback no jacket


Book cover of Punished By Rewards: The Trouble with Gold Stars, Incentive Plans, A's, Praise, and Other Bribes

Joanna Faber and Julie King Author Of How to Talk When Kids Won't Listen: Whining, Fighting, Meltdowns, Defiance, and Other Challenges of Childhood

From my list on to create strong connections in their families.

Who are we?

Joanna Faber is the daughter of Adele Faber, a pioneer of the internationally acclaimed best-selling How To Talk series that has helped millions of parents worldwide. Joanna joined forces with her childhood friend Julie King to provide support for parents and educators of the 21st century. Each draws on her own experiences – Joanna as a bilingual teacher in West Harlem, Julie as a specialist in helping parents of children on the autism spectrum – to lead workshops and speak to parent groups, teachers, doctors, and librarians worldwide, including online sessions to support parents during Covid lockdowns and afterwards. Together, Joanna and Julie have written two best-selling How To Talk books

Joanna and Julie's book list on to create strong connections in their families

Joanna Faber and Julie King Why did Joanna and Julie love this book?

Alfie Kohn offers an eye-opening perspective on the perils of punishment and rewards.

If you've ever questioned the wisdom of using gold star charts and m&m motivators for children, this groundbreaking book is for you. Here is the science behind why extrinsic rewards can extinguish intrinsic motivation, and what to do instead. I found it both an enlightening and entertaining read. It may profoundly change your approach to parenting.

By Alfie Kohn,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Punished By Rewards as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Since its publication in 1993, this groundbreaking book has convinced countless parents, teachers, and managers that working with people is more successful than doing things to them. "Do rewards motivate people?" asks Kohn. "Yes. They motivate people to get rewards." Moreover, the use of rewards actually undermines the quality of people's work or learning - and causes them to lose interest in whatever they've been bribed to do. Seasoned with humour and familiar examples - and updated to include a wealth of recent research, Punished by Rewards presents an argument unsettling to hear but impossible to dismiss.


Book cover of Siblings Without Rivalry: How to Help Your Children Live Together So You Can Live Too

Joanna Faber and Julie King Author Of How to Talk When Kids Won't Listen: Whining, Fighting, Meltdowns, Defiance, and Other Challenges of Childhood

From my list on to create strong connections in their families.

Who are we?

Joanna Faber is the daughter of Adele Faber, a pioneer of the internationally acclaimed best-selling How To Talk series that has helped millions of parents worldwide. Joanna joined forces with her childhood friend Julie King to provide support for parents and educators of the 21st century. Each draws on her own experiences – Joanna as a bilingual teacher in West Harlem, Julie as a specialist in helping parents of children on the autism spectrum – to lead workshops and speak to parent groups, teachers, doctors, and librarians worldwide, including online sessions to support parents during Covid lockdowns and afterwards. Together, Joanna and Julie have written two best-selling How To Talk books

Joanna and Julie's book list on to create strong connections in their families

Joanna Faber and Julie King Why did Joanna and Julie love this book?

The most frustrating and sometimes enraging moments for me as a parent have been when one of my kids hurts the feelings (or the body) of another. Why can’t they just get along??

This book will tell you why! And also, what you can do about it. It’s chock full of humorous and relatable true stories that will give you insights and solutions for your own family. 

By Adele Faber, Elaine Mazlish,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Siblings Without Rivalry as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Already best-selling authors with How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk, Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish turned their minds to the battle of the siblings. Parents themselves, they were determined to figure out how to help their children get along. The result was Siblings Without Rivalry. This wise, groundbreaking book gives parents the practical tools they need to cope with conflict, encourage cooperation, reduce competition, and make it possible for children to experience the joys of their special relationship. With humor and understanding-much gained from raising their own children-Faber and Mazlish explain how and…


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