2022 Reading Challenge: Read a Book About Neurodiversity

OPL invites patrons to take part in the 2022 Reading Challenge, opens a new window! For each challenge, OPL offers suggestions for titles to listen to or read. As you’re working through the challenge, feel free to tag @omahalibrary on Twitter, opens a new window, Instagram, opens a new window, or Facebook, opens a new window, to let us know which read you picked up this month!

What is neurodiversity? The word “neurodiversity” recognizes, without judgment, that not everyone's brain works in the same way, and seeks to expand society's understanding and acceptance of people living with ADHD, autism, dyslexia, and more. Embracing neurodiversity encourages people to broaden their idea of what is “normal.” Embracing neurodiversity also recognizes that living with these conditions can present benefits, not just challenges. An increasing number of books are being published on this topic; it’s the perfect time to learn more!  

If you’re new to the concept of neurodiversity, nonfiction is a great place to start. Books about autism include "Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity, opens a new window" and “Unmasking Autism: Discovering the New Faces of Neurodiversity, opens a new window.” Several books aim to specifically address research surrounding neurodiversity in women, such as “A Radical Guide for Women with ADHD: Embrace Neurodiversity, Live Boldly, and Break Through Barriers, opens a new window” and "Divergent Mind: Thriving in a World That Wasn’t Designed for You., opens a new window"

Several works explore various perspectives on neurodiversity. "Nobody’s Normal: How Culture Created the Stigma of Mental Illness, opens a new window" provides a robust discussion on the ways that societal views impact care. “Neurodiversity: Discovering the Extraordinary Gifts of Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, and Other Brain Differences, opens a new window” brings to light the areas in which neurodiverse people shine, rather than struggle. 

Read about parenting experiences in "Not My Boy!: A Father, a Son, and One Family's Journey With Autism,, opens a new window" Navigating Autism: 9 Mindsets for Helping Kids on the Spectrum, opens a new window,” or “The Dyslexia Empowerment Plan: A Blueprint for Renewing Your Child's Confidence and Love of Learning, opens a new window.” 

Learning about someone’s own lived experience provides nuance, complexity and humanity, making biographies a wonderful resource. Some recommended titles include "Invisible Differences: A Story of Aspergers, Adulting, and Living a Life in Full Color, opens a new window," The Collected Schizophrenias: Essays, opens a new window," “Passing for Normal: A Memoir of Compulsion, opens a new window,” or "The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy With Autism, opens a new window."

If you prefer fiction, this section is for you! Fans of literary fiction might like "The Reckless Oath We Made," “The Seven Rules of Elvira Carr, opens a new window,” or “Miracle Creek, opens a new window.” Science fiction readers can complete this challenge through books such as “An Unkindness of Ghosts, opens a new window,” “The Outside, opens a new window,” or “The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet, opens a new window.” Romance readers, any book by author Helen Hoang, opens a new window would be perfect for this challenge! 

For more ideas check out this list, opens a new window or request a custom reading list or book bundle, opens a new window, tailored to your interests by OPL librarians.

You may submit your completed reading log online, opens a new window or return a completed tracking sheet to any OPL branch to receive a pin and to be entered into a drawing for some fun literary-themed prizes! All completed tracking sheets or online challenge form entries must be received by December 31, 2022, to be entered into the prize drawing.