100 books like Life, Animated

By Ron Suskind,

Here are 100 books that Life, Animated fans have personally recommended if you like Life, Animated. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Book cover of The Out-of-Sync Child: Recognizing and Coping with Sensory Processing Differences

Lisa F. Geng Author Of The Late Talker

From my list on for parents who have a child with apraxia.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started as a designer, patented inventor, and creator in the fashion, toy, and film industries, but after the early diagnosis of my young children on the spectrum, both “late talkers,” diagnosed with multiple disorders including apraxia, I entered the world of nonprofit, research, and advocacy. I am the founder of the nonprofit Cherab Foundation where I've been outreaching for over twenty years. I've hosted numerous conferences including the first for apraxia overseen by a medical director from NIH who reviewed my protocol – the use of fish oils as a therapeutic intervention, published research on my patented nutritional intervention IQed Smart Nutrition, and co-authored the book The Late Talker to share my proven protocol and help others achieve the best possible results for their communication impaired children.

Lisa's book list on for parents who have a child with apraxia

Lisa F. Geng Why did Lisa love this book?

Sensory processing disorder or SPD is a difficult condition to explain as it can involve one or more of any of our senses, so can present differently in each child. It would be considered one of the neurological “soft signs” meaning that a diagnosis of SPD typically means there is more going on than a simple developmental lag. Today the majority of children diagnosed with apraxia also have coexisting soft signs such as SPD, hypotonia (low tone), and/or motor deficits in the body. It’s important if apraxia is diagnosed or suspected to take your child to either a pediatric neurologist or developmental pediatrician to confirm or rule out soft signs in the body.

When Tanner was little and his only “words” were “mmm” or “ma” we were at the Chelsea Piers in NYC. Tanner had a sensory meltdown and if you’ve never seen one it can be very intense. His…

By Carol Stock Kranowitz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Out-of-Sync Child as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The groundbreaking book that explains Sensory Processing Difference (SPD)–and presents a drug-free approach that offers hope for parents–now revised and updated.

Does your child exhibit…

Over-responsivity–or under-responsivity–to touch or movement? A child with SPD may be a “sensory avoider,” withdrawing from touch, refusing to wear certain clothing, avoiding active games–or he may be a “sensory disregarder,” needing a jump start to get moving.

Over-responsivity–or under-responsivity–to sounds, sights taste, or smell? She may cover her ears or eyes, be a picky eater, or seem oblivious to sensory cues.

Cravings for sensation? The “sensory craver” never gets enough of certain sensations, e.g.,…


Book cover of The Rosie Project

Ruth Leigh Author Of The Diary of Isabella M Smugge

From my list on books you read and re-read even though you know every word by heart.

Why am I passionate about this?

I learned to read at four and have been telling stories ever since. Books were my escape from unhappiness into a new and endless world. Left to myself, I’d read ten or so weekly, and my mind was packed with characters, dialogue, jokes, prose, and poetry like an over-brimming literary reservoir. Words are my thing, and I am an avid collector of them. I was reading David Copperfield at eight and specialised in 18th and 19th-century literature at university. I’ve written five books and am working on the sixth. I love writing humour but have also authored Jane Austen Fan Fiction and poetry. Without books, my world is nothing.

Ruth's book list on books you read and re-read even though you know every word by heart

Ruth Leigh Why did Ruth love this book?

To my knowledge, no one has written a main character like Don Tilman before. A tall, handsome genetics professor who’s never had a second date, he approaches his need for a wife with typical precision and the use of a complex spreadsheet. Don navigates the unfamiliar world of feelings and unplanned activities with his customary efficiency, but what is this strange new emotion he’s feeling?

I simply adore this book and often read it twice a year. It’s an absolute delight, funny, poignant, and so incredibly life-affirming. You’ll be cheering Don and Rosie on and hoping that everything works out for them. I do every time, and I know what happens!

By Graeme Simsion,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked The Rosie Project as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The international bestselling romantic comedy “bursting with warmth, emotional depth, and…humor,” (Entertainment Weekly) featuring the oddly charming, socially challenged genetics professor, Don, as he seeks true love.

The art of love is never a science: Meet Don Tillman, a brilliant yet socially inept professor of genetics, who’s decided it’s time he found a wife. In the orderly, evidence-based manner with which Don approaches all things, he designs the Wife Project to find his perfect partner: a sixteen-page, scientifically valid survey to filter out the drinkers, the smokers, the late arrivers.

Rosie Jarman possesses all these qualities. Don easily disqualifies her…


Book cover of The New Language of Toys: Teaching Communication Skills to Children with Special Needs, a Guide for Parents and Teachers

Lisa F. Geng Author Of The Late Talker

From my list on for parents who have a child with apraxia.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started as a designer, patented inventor, and creator in the fashion, toy, and film industries, but after the early diagnosis of my young children on the spectrum, both “late talkers,” diagnosed with multiple disorders including apraxia, I entered the world of nonprofit, research, and advocacy. I am the founder of the nonprofit Cherab Foundation where I've been outreaching for over twenty years. I've hosted numerous conferences including the first for apraxia overseen by a medical director from NIH who reviewed my protocol – the use of fish oils as a therapeutic intervention, published research on my patented nutritional intervention IQed Smart Nutrition, and co-authored the book The Late Talker to share my proven protocol and help others achieve the best possible results for their communication impaired children.

Lisa's book list on for parents who have a child with apraxia

Lisa F. Geng Why did Lisa love this book?

When you have a child with a severe communication impairment, they probably are in therapy almost every day of their life. Too often, I’ve found parents forget children with special needs are still children.  While appropriate speech therapy is critical for apraxia, children learn through play, and too often the importance of play is underestimated. What I love about The New Language of Toys is it shows us, the parents (as well as therapists) how to take typical toys found around the house to use as fun therapy tools to help bring your child a voice.  

 I used to work in toy design prior to being a parent so being able to use toys as therapy for speech is amazing. In addition, it helps the child’s self-esteem when you can teach them how to play, something that doesn’t always come naturally to a percentage of children with special needs. This…

By Sue Schwartz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The New Language of Toys as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of Your Special Education Rights: What Your School District Isn't Telling You

Lisa F. Geng Author Of The Late Talker

From my list on for parents who have a child with apraxia.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started as a designer, patented inventor, and creator in the fashion, toy, and film industries, but after the early diagnosis of my young children on the spectrum, both “late talkers,” diagnosed with multiple disorders including apraxia, I entered the world of nonprofit, research, and advocacy. I am the founder of the nonprofit Cherab Foundation where I've been outreaching for over twenty years. I've hosted numerous conferences including the first for apraxia overseen by a medical director from NIH who reviewed my protocol – the use of fish oils as a therapeutic intervention, published research on my patented nutritional intervention IQed Smart Nutrition, and co-authored the book The Late Talker to share my proven protocol and help others achieve the best possible results for their communication impaired children.

Lisa's book list on for parents who have a child with apraxia

Lisa F. Geng Why did Lisa love this book?

Unlike parents who have a child that is born deaf or blind where protocols are in place by law, if you have a child with a communication impairment like apraxia, you have to advocate a lot for your child or they may not receive the therapies and placement that are appropriate for them. To make it even more complicated, there is no one set classification for a child with apraxia. If your child is deaf or has a diagnosis such as autism, the school system has a classification for those diagnoses. For just about any other communication impairment your child can be classified from “other health impaired” to “developmentally delayed” Some schools may have communication or speech impairments as a classification, but not all.

This book is a start to helping you learn how to become an advocate for your late talker child. After advocating for both of my special…

By Jennifer Laviano, Julie Swanson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Your Special Education Rights as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Drawing on decades of experience, a special education attorney and sought-after special education advocate help parents of students with disabilities navigate their school systems to get the services they need for their children.

Parents will find no other book on special education like Your Special Education Rights. Julie and Jennifer demystify the federal laws that govern the rights of public school children with disabilities and explain how school districts often ignore or circumvent these laws. They pull the curtain back on the politics of special education, exposing truths that school districts don't want you to know, such as the fact…


Book cover of Chicken Soup for the Soul: All Your Favorite Original Stories Plus 20 Bonus Stories for the Next 20 Years

Lisa F. Geng Author Of The Late Talker

From my list on for parents who have a child with apraxia.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started as a designer, patented inventor, and creator in the fashion, toy, and film industries, but after the early diagnosis of my young children on the spectrum, both “late talkers,” diagnosed with multiple disorders including apraxia, I entered the world of nonprofit, research, and advocacy. I am the founder of the nonprofit Cherab Foundation where I've been outreaching for over twenty years. I've hosted numerous conferences including the first for apraxia overseen by a medical director from NIH who reviewed my protocol – the use of fish oils as a therapeutic intervention, published research on my patented nutritional intervention IQed Smart Nutrition, and co-authored the book The Late Talker to share my proven protocol and help others achieve the best possible results for their communication impaired children.

Lisa's book list on for parents who have a child with apraxia

Lisa F. Geng Why did Lisa love this book?

As a parent of a child diagnosed with apraxia, you probably have heard, “what’s wrong with him?” at least once. If not, be prepared, because when you hear it and you aren’t ready for it, it can feel like someone knocked the wind out of you. I didn’t only love the Chicken Soup for the Soul books for me, but I also would share the stories I felt were of interest with my boys who both were diagnosed as young children with severe special needs. What these books brought me and my boys was pride, hope, and inspiration that from a rough beginning, there can be a bright future. Actually, in some cases, these stories share it’s due to a rough start that the person ended up becoming a better person.

While my son Tanner was little and I read stories to him from the Chicken Soup for the Soul…

By Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Amy Newmark

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Chicken Soup for the Soul as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The classic New York Times bestseller that started it all- and according to USA Today one of the top five books in the past quarter century "that leave a legacy." The Original... with 20 new bonus stories for the next 20 years!

Everyone is talking about it. Twenty years after its creation, this bestseller continues to change lives around the world. Rediscover the power of inspiration with timeless stories about the everyday miracles that illuminate the best of the human spirit.

Whether you're discovering Chicken Soup for the Soul for the first time, or you are a long-time fan, this…


Book cover of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Susan Emshwiller Author Of Thar She Blows

From my list on first-person narrators navigating screwed-up lives.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am fascinated by first-person points of view. In writing plays and screenplays, I couldn’t write the inner thoughts of my characters. Now, in novels and short stories, I do that almost exclusively, even if the stories contain multiple narrators. I love the Unreliable Narrator—whether it is someone too young to understand what they are witnessing, someone who is in denial, or mentally ill, or a non-human experiencing the world in an odd way—the discrepancy between their view and mine delights me. I love discovering all those inner thoughts, fears, anxieties, and desires. These first-person stories let me into another’s experience and allow me to empathize with a whole new perspective.  

Susan's book list on first-person narrators navigating screwed-up lives

Susan Emshwiller Why did Susan love this book?

This stunning book puts me in the head of a young boy with a neurodivergent way of seeing the world. I picked up this book before a cross-country flight and couldn’t stand that we landed, and I would have to stop reading for the drive home.

It immersed me in Christopher’s dilemma of trying to make sense of people. The most trivial things become massive. I was hurtled along with him for a harrowing, incredible journey. Profoundly moving!

By Mark Haddon,

Why should I read it?

24 authors picked The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winner of the Whitbread Book of the Year

'Outstanding...a stunningly good read' Observer

'Mark Haddon's portrayal of an emotionally dissociated mind is a superb achievement... Wise and bleakly funny' Ian McEwan

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is a murder mystery novel like no other. The detective, and narrator, is Christopher Boone. Christopher is fifteen and has Asperger's Syndrome. He knows a very great deal about maths and very little about human beings. He loves lists, patterns and the truth. He hates the colours yellow and brown and being touched. He has never gone further than the…


Book cover of Thinking in Pictures

Claire LaZebnik Author Of Hidden Brilliance: Unlocking the Intelligence of Autism

From my list on cherishing and enjoying your neurodivergent child.

Why am I passionate about this?

I always intended to be a fiction writer (and have written ten novels, both YA and adult) but my oldest child is autistic, which led to my meeting and then collaborating on several non-fiction books with Dr. Lynn Kern Koegel, who’s an expert in the autism field, currently at Stanford University. Finding myself writing non-fiction wasn’t the only way having an autistic child changed my life. When my son was first diagnosed, I didn’t know what that meant for his future, and I desperately wanted information—and even entertainmentthat made me feel inspired and hopeful. I needed to find my way toward feeling positive and not anxious, for both our sakes.

Claire's book list on cherishing and enjoying your neurodivergent child

Claire LaZebnik Why did Claire love this book?

I still remember when my son’s speech therapist recommended this to me: she warned me that I would find it overwhelming because Temple had such huge challenges.

But I didn’t feel discouraged or overwhelmed at all. Grandin is so uniquely herself from beginning to end, so smart, so aware, so able to figure out both her own needs and those of the animals whose lives (and deaths) she improves, that I found the book totally uplifting, not to mention fascinating.

The fact that she singlehandedly made our slaughterhouses infinitely more humane proves the point my co-author and I are always trying to make: neurodivergent individuals will think of things no one else does and enrich any project or community they’re part of.

By Temple Grandin,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Thinking in Pictures as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 15, 16, and 17.

What is this book about?

The idea that some people think differently, though no less humanly, is explored in this inspiring book. Temple Grandin is a gifted and successful animal scientist, and she is autistic. Here she tells us what it was like to grow up perceiving the world in an entirely concrete and visual way - somewhat akin to how animals think, she believes - and how it feels now. Through her finely observed understanding of the workings of her mind, she gives us an invaluable insight into autism and its challenges.


Book cover of Shadow Syndromes: The Mild Forms of Major Mental Disorders That Sabotage Us

Claire LaZebnik Author Of Hidden Brilliance: Unlocking the Intelligence of Autism

From my list on cherishing and enjoying your neurodivergent child.

Why am I passionate about this?

I always intended to be a fiction writer (and have written ten novels, both YA and adult) but my oldest child is autistic, which led to my meeting and then collaborating on several non-fiction books with Dr. Lynn Kern Koegel, who’s an expert in the autism field, currently at Stanford University. Finding myself writing non-fiction wasn’t the only way having an autistic child changed my life. When my son was first diagnosed, I didn’t know what that meant for his future, and I desperately wanted information—and even entertainmentthat made me feel inspired and hopeful. I needed to find my way toward feeling positive and not anxious, for both our sakes.

Claire's book list on cherishing and enjoying your neurodivergent child

Claire LaZebnik Why did Claire love this book?

I’ve always been fascinated by the question, “What is personality?”

Is there someone we’re hardwired to be or do other factors so affect us that we’re who we are because of our experiences? What about extreme traits—are they an aspect of our personality or something more external? 

This book tackles these questions in such an interesting way, by focusing on mild forms of traits that might be diagnosable at higher levels. For example, if you’re quick to anger, is it possible you have a mild form of a rage disorder, or are you simply an angry person? 

One of the chapters is about adults with very mild traits of autism. It opens the door to our thinking more deeply about autism as an inherent part of someone’s personality, rather than something separate from them.

There’s something affirming and positive about that to me. I think any parent with a neurodivergent…

By John J. Ratey, Catherine Johnson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Are you living under a shadow?

Do you or someone you love suffer from:

Chronic sadness
Obsessiveness
Outbursts of anger
The inability to finish tasks
Acute anxiety
Disabling discomfort in social situations

These are the "shadow syndromes" of major mental disorders that limit the lives, productivity, and happiness of millions of people.

Drawing on cutting-edge research, Drs. Ratey and Johnson challenge the most basic beliefs of our mental health professionals by uncovering the biological factors that often determine our personalities.  They use real-life case studies to illustrate how shadow syndromes affect our everyday lives and how they can be treated--often…


Book cover of The Illusion of Life

Ron Husband Author Of Quick Sketching with Ron Husband

From my list on sketching, anatomy and animation for the artist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been drawing for over 68 years and carrying a sketchbook for over 60 of those years. I've seen success as an author, I'm an award-winning illustrator of books and magazines and animated many classic Disney features. Am I an expert on sketching humans and animals? ...No. I'm constantly learning in my effort to capture humans and animals in action by following the basic principles of drawing as they apply to quick sketching. My learning is aided by these books as I prepare lesson plans or the encouragement and inspiration found within their pages. I'm married to LaVonne, my high school sweetheart of 50 years, and have three grown children and six grandchildren.

Ron's book list on sketching, anatomy and animation for the artist

Ron Husband Why did Ron love this book?

I was privileged to see firsthand these two Disney Legends and their passions for the craft of storytelling through animation. I worked with Frank and Ollie as a young animation trainee. I learned the basics of animation by ‘in-betweening’ scenes primarily for Frank. In addition to ‘in-betweening’ for Frank, he would give me scenes to animate under his supervision. The principles and philosophy of the ‘Disney way’ are explained within the pages of this book and I was fortunate to have absorbed them firsthand.

Applying the principles of animation that Frank and Ollie presented has had a tremendous effect on all aspects of my art. My book, my personal award-winning illustrations, and a 38-year career with the Disney Studio bear witness of putting these principles into practice.

By Frank Thomas, Ollie Johnston,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked The Illusion of Life as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The most complete book on the subject ever written, this is the fascinating inside story by two long-term Disney animators of the gradual perfecting of a relatively young and particularly American art from, which no other move studio has ever been able to equal.

The authors, Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston, worked with Walt Disney himself as well as other leading figures in a half-century of Disney films. They personally animated leading characters in most of the famous films and have decades of close association with the others who helped perfect this extremely difficult and time-consuming art form. Not to…


Book cover of Drawn to Life

Ron Husband Author Of Quick Sketching with Ron Husband

From my list on sketching, anatomy and animation for the artist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I've been drawing for over 68 years and carrying a sketchbook for over 60 of those years. I've seen success as an author, I'm an award-winning illustrator of books and magazines and animated many classic Disney features. Am I an expert on sketching humans and animals? ...No. I'm constantly learning in my effort to capture humans and animals in action by following the basic principles of drawing as they apply to quick sketching. My learning is aided by these books as I prepare lesson plans or the encouragement and inspiration found within their pages. I'm married to LaVonne, my high school sweetheart of 50 years, and have three grown children and six grandchildren.

Ron's book list on sketching, anatomy and animation for the artist

Ron Husband Why did Ron love this book?

This two-book volume of notes, drawings, wise sayings, and philosophy are and have been invaluable assets to the learning curve of myself and numerous others. I have these same handouts, in storage boxes, saved over the years. I was there in the lunch-time drawing classes Walt taught at the Disney Studio. Before each drawing session he would hand out these xerox pages. On occasion some of my sketches were included in these handouts. With humor and enthusiasm, Walt encouraged us to push the models pose, see the possibilities and more, all with a goal of making better animation drawings. 

By Walt Stanchfield,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Discover the lessons that helped bring about a new golden age of Disney animation!

Published for the first time ever, Drawn to Life is a two volume collection of the legendary lectures from long-time Disney animator Walt Stanchfield. For over twenty years, Walt helped breathe life into the new golden age of animation with these teachings at the Walt Disney Animation Studios and influenced such talented artists as Tim Burton, Brad Bird, Glen Keane, and John Lasseter. These writings represent the quintessential refresher for fine artists and film professionals, and it is a vital tutorial for students who are now…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in traditionally animated filmss, autism, and apraxia?

11,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about traditionally animated filmss, autism, and apraxia.

Traditionally Animated Filmss Explore 18 books about traditionally animated filmss
Autism Explore 65 books about autism
Apraxia Explore 5 books about apraxia