100 books like Fifty-Four Things Wrong with Gwendolyn Rogers

By Caela Carter,

Here are 100 books that Fifty-Four Things Wrong with Gwendolyn Rogers fans have personally recommended if you like Fifty-Four Things Wrong with Gwendolyn Rogers. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of A Boy Called Bat

Laurel Decher Author Of Trouble With Parsnips: About the Magic of Speaking Up

From my list on luring your kids into trying new things.

Why am I passionate about this?

The heroes and heroines in the Seven Kingdoms Fairy Tales face challenges inspired by my own fears, like giving a presentation in the front of the class, getting lost in an unfamiliar place, finding my place in a new school, or working out how to be fair to my friends when we disagree about the rules. Fears tell us a boring life is “safe.” They hide our extraordinary life behind their backs. I write books for and about kids attempting things that are absolutely positively “not for them”. Because kids are the bravest people around. That’s why they’re so magical.

Laurel's book list on luring your kids into trying new things

Laurel Decher Why did Laurel love this book?

Doesn’t every kid want a pet? Most kids think of a dog, a cat, a hamster, or a hermit crab, but this story is about trying a new kind of pet: A skunk.

Bixby Alexander Tam, a.k.a. Bat, has his work cut out for him. His mom is a veterinarian. That’s how the skunk got into the house. (At our house, it was Stretchy the Leech. We have a zoologist in the family.) Watching Bat convince his mom that a skunk could be his pet, instead of a ticking time-bomb, was lots of fun. (I love the author’s note about the skunk scientist. Science magic.)

By Elana K. Arnold, Charles Santoso (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked A Boy Called Bat as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

The first book in a funny, heartfelt, and irresistible young middle grade series starring an unforgettable young boy on the autism spectrum.

For Bixby Alexander Tam (nicknamed Bat), life tends to be full of surprises-some of them good, some not so good. Today, though, is a good-surprise day. Bat's mom, a veterinarian, has brought home a baby skunk, which she needs to take care of until she can hand him over to a wild-animal shelter.

But the minute Bat meets the kit, he knows they belong together. And he's got one month to show his mom that a baby skunk…


Book cover of M Is for Autism

Sally J. Pla Author Of The Someday Birds

From my list on neurodiversity and autism representation.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up undiagnosed autistic. I got excellent grades and never caused much trouble, so no one could tell what was going on inside. But sensory overload and confusion over social dynamics kept me in a bewildering muddle. Books and stories are what helped me through! But there were no stories featuring neurodivergent kids like me, so, as an adult, I resolved to write some. I want to bust stigmas and write honest, fun, heartfelt stories for kids who might be going through their own ‘bewildering muddles.’ Now, I'm an award-winning author of several children's novels and a picture book. I'm also co-founder/editor of A Novel Mind, a web resource on mental health and neurodiversity in children's literature.

Sally's book list on neurodiversity and autism representation

Sally J. Pla Why did Sally love this book?

M. is an autistic teen girl who desperately wants to be just like everyone else. Who longs to know the proper things to say and do.

And this was me. I was an undiagnosed autistic girl who longed to know the “right” ways to be/talk/act/feel, who never could quite de-code social situations or feel like I fit in.

Written collaboratively with the autistic girls who attend the Limpsfield-Grange School and their teacher, Vicky Martin, this book captured something special about the tricky social dilemmas of young teendom, something that resonated so deeply in me – I loved its truth-telling, and how funny and sad it was in turns – that’s how I write, too.

By The Student Of Limpsfield Grange School, Vicky Martin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked M Is for Autism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

M. That's what I'd like you to call me please. I'll tell you why later.

Welcome to M's world. It's tipsy-turvy, sweet and sour, and the beast of anxiety lurks outside classrooms ready to pounce. M just wants to be like other teenagers her age who always know what to say and what to do. So why does it feel like she lives on a different plane of existence to everyone else?

Written by the students of Limpsfield Grange, a school for girls with Autism Spectrum Disorder with communication and interaction difficulties, M is for Autism draws on real life…


Book cover of A Kind of Spark

Violet Plum Author Of Little Chicken Classic - Luke Walker: animal stick up for-er

From my list on for children which are also loved by adults.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love writing and illustrating all sorts of children's stories. The only thing my stories have in common is that none of their heroes eat meat, drink milk, or take part in the egg and spoon race. I write the kind of stories I want to read. I don't want to read about sex or violence. And I don't want to read foul language. I want something meaningful, something with a concluding note of optimism. Consequently, well-written children's stories often appeal to me. In fact, I've come to the conclusion that these are not just children's stories, they're good stories that anyone can enjoy.

Violet's book list on for children which are also loved by adults

Violet Plum Why did Violet love this book?

This book is gripping. From the first sentence I was hooked as the autistic heroine showed me what life is like when no one understands you. When no one thinks like you. And when almost everyone underestimates you. I have learned so much from this book and am grateful for it. I love Addie. I love how empathetic she is as she campaigns for a memorial for the accused witches executed by her village centuries earlier. And I love her passion for sharks and her desire for them to live free and natural lives. I am certain that she would not visit aquariums because she knows how cruel captivity is. She is a bright, brave soul and I highly recommend that you read her story.

By Elle McNicoll,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked A Kind of Spark as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

Perfect for readers of Song for a Whale and Counting by 7s, a neurodivergent girl campaigns for a memorial when she learns that her small Scottish town used to burn witches simply because they were different.

"A must-read for students and adults alike." -School Library Journal, Starred Review
 
Ever since Ms. Murphy told us about the witch trials that happened centuries ago right here in Juniper, I can’t stop thinking about them. Those people weren’t magic. They were like me. Different like me.
 
I’m autistic. I see things that others do not. I hear sounds that they can ignore. And…


Book cover of The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism

Ned Hayes Author Of The Eagle Tree

From my list on YA on the autistic experience/outsider experiences.

Why am I passionate about this?

We all have important stories to tell. So my mission in life is to tell stories from many different perspectives. To date, I’ve written novels narrated by a 13th-century woman, a gruff North Idaho detective, a 14-year-old boy, a sorcerer, and even a tree! To write all my characters, I start with my own experiences of course –March Wong in The Eagle Tree draws on my own experiences growing up in China and from my experience working with neurodivergent children. But I don’t stay locked in my own perspective. Instead, I use my stories to continuously stretch our understanding of what it means to be human. 

Ned's book list on YA on the autistic experience/outsider experiences

Ned Hayes Why did Ned love this book?

The Reason I Jump is a fascinating look inside the mind of a neurodivergent young man who shares his hopes, his dreams, and his unique perspective on the culture we all live in. I learned so much about Naoki’s unique point of view and grew to have great empathy for his inability to easily communicate his needs to others. This is a fully embodied look at our world from someone who sees from a different point of view, a non-verbal Japanese young man who has lived a rich and full life but doesn’t see the world the same as neurotypical people. 

I love the way that Naoki’s full humanity comes through in this nonfiction book, ably translated and written down in English by the bestselling literary superstar David Mitchell. Read it, and you’ll love Naoki as well!

By Naoki Higashida, KA Yoshida (translator), David Mitchell (translator)

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Reason I Jump as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The No. 1 Sunday Times and internationally bestselling account of life as a child with autism, now an award-winning documentary film.

'It will stretch your vision of what it is to be human' Andrew Solomon, The Times
What is it like to have autism? How can we know what a person - especially a child - with autism is thinking and feeling?

This groundbreaking book, written by Naoki Higashida when he was only thirteen, provides some answers. Severely autistic and non-verbal, Naoki learnt to communicate by using a 'cardboard keyboard' - and what he has to say gives a rare…


Book cover of Worthy of Love

Laina Villeneuve Author Of Birds of a Feather

From my list on neurodiverse women who love women.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was thrown into the deep end to learn about autism when our first son was diagnosed as autistic. As first-time parents, how were we to know that the struggles we faced went beyond the norm? We also have twins, one of whom is ADHD and the other dyslexic. Thus, not only have I spent a lot of time learning about autism, but I also enjoy turning to fiction to learn how others both struggle and find solutions. I started writing because the bedtime routine with my kiddos was very difficult. Nearly twelve years later, I am still using my writing to overcome the obstacles in my life. 

Laina's book list on neurodiverse women who love women

Laina Villeneuve Why did Laina love this book?

This book follows the life of Nadine after her release from prison.

She’s shunned by just about everyone except Bella with whom she works at a discount store. This author uses the self-doubt each woman harbors to develop a delicious conflict. Nadine doesn’t think she is worthy of Bella’s affection because of her time served, and Bella doesn’t think she is smart or accomplished enough for Nadine who, before her conviction, was a high-powered lawyer.

I loved seeing how the compassion they offer each other restores the self-worth necessary for a successful relationship. Especially satisfying was the revelation Bella has when Nadine suggests that Bella might be ADHD, not stupid.

This book’s acknowledgment of how damaging societal perception can be to the individual is so powerful. 

By Quinn Ivins,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

An age-gap, workplace lesbian romance about learning you’re never too broken to be worthy of love.Nadine Bayani was at the top of her game. The brilliant, ruthless lawyer was in line to be White House chief of staff—until she confessed to campaign finance crimes that cost her party the election.Now Nadine’s out of prison, broke, hated by millions, and stuck doing a menial retail job in rural Virginia where she barely earns enough to survive.Bella Clarke has worked at Overstock Oasis since she flunked college. She wants to go back to school, but secretly doubts she’s smart enough. At least…


Book cover of Normal Sucks

Meg Jay Author Of The Defining Decade: Why Your Twenties Matter--And How to Make the Most of Them Now

From my list on figuring out your 20s.

Why am I passionate about this?

Meg Jay, PhD, is a Clinical Psychologist, and an Associate Professor of Human Development at the University of Virginia, who specializes in adult development and in twentysomethings in particular. She earned a doctorate in clinical psychology, and in gender studies, from the University of California, Berkeley. Her books have been translated into more than a dozen languages and her work has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review and on NPR and BBC. Her TED talk “Why 30 Is Not the New 20” is among the most watched of all time.

Meg's book list on figuring out your 20s

Meg Jay Why did Meg love this book?

This book is for every twentysomething out there with a learning difference. After years of struggling in school, maybe by now you’re feeling a bit beat up and worn down. This book will help you shake it off with a good laugh and a good cry and remind you that adult life and work don't have to be like the classroom. I laughed out loud with every page, except for the ones that broke my heart.

By Jonathan Mooney,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Jonathan Mooney blends anecdote, expertise, and memoir to present a new mode of thinking about how we live and learn - individually, uniquely, and with advantages and upshots to every type of brain and body. As a neuro-diverse kid diagnosed with dyslexia and ADHD who didn't learn to read until he was twelve, the realisation that that he wasn't the problem - the system and the concept of normal were - saved Mooney's life and fundamentally changed his outlook. Here he explores the toll that being not normal takes on kids and adults when they're trapped in environments that label…


Book cover of The Power of Neurodiversity: Unleashing the Advantages of Your Differently Wired Brain

Ann Ozsivadjian Author Of Helping Your Autistic Child: A self-help guide for parents

From my list on neurodiversity: our unique and brilliant brains.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a clinical psychologist who has specialised in neurodiversity and neurodivergence for the past twenty years. Human brains, emotions, and behaviour have always fascinated me, hence why I studied psychology. Neurodiversity was a natural field to enter for someone interested in both child development and neuroscience. I am also an avid reader and wax lyrical about the value of literature for understanding both one’s inner self and the world around us.

Ann's book list on neurodiversity: our unique and brilliant brains

Ann Ozsivadjian Why did Ann love this book?

I found this book while I was researching for my own book and have been recommending it regularly to families ever since. It promotes a positive view of neurodiversity without being ‘PollyAnna-ish’–I would call it positive realism.

It was written over thirteen years ago now, so not all the language will be perfect for everybody by today’s standards. However, the concepts are still very current, and they are expressed sensitively. Clinical conditions such as autism, ADHD, and dyslexia are described in a very accessible way, demonstrating how symptoms are on a continuum, and many of us can relate to at least some features of most of the conditions.

Chapters on depression and anxiety are included, and while these arguably fall under mental health rather than neurodiversity, I was really glad of their inclusion in this book, as the overlaps between mental health conditions and neurodiversity are many, and clinical distinctions…

Book cover of My Life of Crime: Essays and Other Entertainments

Patricia Lynne Duffy Author Of Blue Cats and Chartreuse Kittens

From my list on neurodiversity by authors who are neurodiverse.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a neurodivergent person myself, I have always been fascinated by the fact that each of us perceives the world in a way that is as unique as our fingerprints. My book was the first book by a synesthete about synesthesiaWhile writing the book, I interviewed many neuroscientists, synesthetes, and other neurodiverse people. Later, I was invited to contribute a chapter, “Synesthesia and Literature,” to the Oxford Handbook of Synesthesia. I am now a regular contributor to Journey through the Senses Online Magazine, where you can read interviews with authors whose books spotlight synesthesia and other forms of neurodivergence. I am also the co-founder of the American Synesthesia Association.

Patricia's book list on neurodiversity by authors who are neurodiverse

Patricia Lynne Duffy Why did Patricia love this book?

This book made me laugh out loud!

In this winner of the 2023 Independent Publisher Book Award bronze medal, the author tells true tales of his everyday life as a writer in New York City’s East Village and Brooklyn. We hear stories of the quirky situations and characters he encounters, stories that often take a meandering path due to, as the author tells us, his diagnosis of A.D.D. (attention deficit disorder).

The author’s unique, quirky writing style has him begin one funny story, which then leads to another and another, then circles back to the first. As author Tyler Gore himself said in an interview, “I strongly feel that both my sense of humor and my creativity are connected to my A.D.D., and that seems like a fair trade-off for occasionally losing my glasses on the train.”

By Tyler C. Gore,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

An awkward visit to a nude beach. A bike-pedaling angel careening through rush-hour traffic. The mystery of a sandwich found in a bathroom stall. A lyric, rainy-day ramble through the East Village. With the personal essays (and three other entertainments) in this debut collection, Tyler C. Gore reveals the artistic secrets of his life of crime: a charming wit, compassionate observation, perfection of style, and, over all, a winsomely colorful light tinged with just enough despair. Whether stewing over a subway encounter with a deranged businessman, confessing his sordid past as a prankster, or recounting his family's history of hoarding,…


Book cover of Focused

Alysa Wishingrad Author Of The Verdigris Pawn

From my list on for chess lovers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love games; board games, card games, head games*; any kind of situation in which employing strategy is the only way forward. And yet, I’m not a big game player—aside from word games. I’m also endlessly fascinated by the mechanisms of power and how societies arrange themselves. The marriage between writing and understanding politics (in the traditional, not the partisan sense) is my true north. Writing a book in which a chess-like game provides the foundation felt inevitable for me, for what game better explores the dynamics of power and strategy? *I don’t play head games, but I do find manipulation fascinating fodder for writing.

Alysa's book list on for chess lovers

Alysa Wishingrad Why did Alysa love this book?

Focused is a beautiful exploration of one girl’s experience coming to terms with an ADHD diagnosis. The writing is rich and filled with emotion, and I very much felt like I was living inside Clea’s head, which gave me incredible insights into her strengths and struggles. That she’s a gifted chess player perfectly illustrates for young readers that neurodiversity isn’t about being broken in any way, it’s not a reflection of intelligence or ability, but simply it’s another way of being in the world, one that requires finding the right tools. 

By Alyson Gerber,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Focused as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 8, 9, 10, and 11.

What is this book about?

3 starred reviews!
"A story full of charm, compassion, and empathy." -- TODAY
 
Following Braced, which had three starred reviews, comes a story of a girl caught between her love of chess and her ADHD.
Clea can't control her thoughts. She knows she has to do her homework . . . but she gets distracted. She knows she can't just say whatever thought comes into her head . . . but sometimes she can't help herself. She know she needs to focus . . . but how can she do that when the people around her are always chewing gum…


Book cover of Make Social and Emotional Learning Stick!: Practical Activities to Help Your Child Manage Emotions, Navigate Social Situations & Reduce Anxiety

Rebecca Branstetter Author Of The Everything Parent's Guide to Children with Executive Functioning Disorder: Strategies to help your child achieve the time-management skills, ... needed to succeed in school and life

From my list on helping children with ADHD with executive function.

Why am I passionate about this?

Is there a Japanese or Dutch word for "One who loves to geek out on organizational strategies, productivity (and post-its) SO MUCH they focus their career on it?" If there is, um......that's me. I'm Dr. Rebecca Branstetter, and I've been a school psychologist and collector of practical strategies to support students with executive functioning challenges for over 20 years. As the author of The Everything Parents Guide to Executive Functioning and creator of the “How to Teach Children and Teens Executive Functioning Skills” masterclass, my passion is to help kids figure out how they learn, what's getting in the way of their potential, and what to do about it!

Rebecca's book list on helping children with ADHD with executive function

Rebecca Branstetter Why did Rebecca love this book?

So often, executive functioning challenges like impulse control, difficulties with attention, and trouble with organization are thought of as isolated skills to be taught as an “add on” lesson. However, there are easy ways to teach executive functioning skills as an “add IN” to what parents and educators are already doing throughout the day. I recommend this book because it helps teach executive functioning in everyday routines, like cooking, going to the store, and on the playground. I really love the colorful and ready-to-use pages in this book! The author also sells a really cool card deck you can get to take with you “on the go” to boost not only executive functioning but also emotional regulation and social communication.

By Elizabeth Sautter,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Make Social and Emotional Learning Stick! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Mom’s Choice Award winner, Make Social and Emotional Learning Stick! Practical activities to help your child manage their emotions, navigate social situations and decrease anxiety, Expanded and Updated, (black and white version!) has helped thousands of families boost emotional regulation, executive functioning, social communication, reduce anxiety, and so much more!

Does your child struggle to have meaningful connections, navigate social situations, and communicate with others?

Learn how to support them so that they can build on their strengths and interests to feel confident and connected in social relationships and situations.

Does your child experience high levels of anxiety or…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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