Journey with me…



Special-needs-children-222x225Welcome to Children’s Books Heal!   I specifically chose to use “heal” in my blog name, because I felt it more inclusive of what I wanted to communicate — books have the power to heal.  Many of the books I plan to  review will focus on children and teens with special needs.   It’s  a broad category ranging from autism, Asperger’s syndrome, cancer, cerebral palsy, hearing and visual impairments to anxiety, ADHD, intellectual disability, adoption, divorce and grief.  I also will target books that are  multicultural,  about peace, conflict resolution, virtues, and the power of music and the arts to heal.  Each book will be hand-picked for the quality of its message.

In January 2011, Scholastic, the largest publisher of children’s books, released the Top 10 Trends in Children’s Books from 2010.    Among those trends was an increase in fiction with main characters who have special needs.  Examples included My Brother Charlie, Marcel in the Real World, and Mockingbird — all great books I will share.

According to a study published by Brigham Young University professors in the December 2010 issue of Education and Training in Autism and Developmental Disabilities,  “Despite an increasingly positive portrayal  of characters with disabilities in Newbery Award-winning books, there still is not an accurate representation of the nearly 7 million children with disabilities attending U.S. public schools.”   They studied Newbery Award and Honor books published from 1975 to 2009.

“We are hoping that this will be a call to authors,”  said Professor Tina Dyches.  “We’ve got so many wonderful authors in the world and we would love to see more inclusive characterizations in high quality books where kids with disabilities are being recognized for who they are no not just the limitations of their disabilities.”

I am a journalist and writer who  hopes to review high quality books for children and students with special needs.  I bring with me many life experiences.  My husband and I have a large blended family, with two adopted children, one a foreign adoption.  We have parented children with disabilities and special needs.  I also know what it is like to live as an adult with a disability, as I had a serious brain injury seven years ago.  And, I know how grief impacts children and families.  In 2009, our grandson was a casualty of the war in Iraq.   These experiences have influenced my choice in writing books for children, and the theme for my blog.

Please join me in my journey of writing and blogging.


About Patricia Tiltonhttps://childrensbooksheal.wordpress.comI want "Children's Books Heal" to be a resource for parents, grandparents, teachers and school counselors. My goal is to share books on a wide range of topics that have a healing impact on children who are facing challenges in their lives. If you are looking for good books on grief, autism, visual and hearing impairments, special needs, diversity, bullying, military families and social justice issues, you've come to the right place. I also share books that encourage art, imagination and creativity. I am always searching for those special gems to share with you. If you have a suggestion, please let me know.

11 thoughts on “Journey with me…

  1. Pat,
    I do so agree that books have power to heal and sustain and I am excited to follow this blog and your career as an author in this clearly defined niche. You are responding to an educational call and a publishing trend, backed up with all your own personal experiences; a strong place to start. As you know, we share a strong interest in multi cultural books promoting tolerance, peace and interest in others, so I know that your posts are going to be stimulating for me. It is also inspiring to see another of Emma’s Children’s Book Hub members launch a writer’s blog; a testimony to the teaching and tips we receive from her and her resources. Your theme is very peaceful and I love the Margaret Mead quote. As a teacher, I certainly welcome more high quality books portraying children with different needs and challenges.

    • Joanna,

      I appreciate your comments on my first launch. My goal was to set the stage for what I hope to accomplish in coming months. You know I am very passionate about this corner of children’s literature and am hopeful it continues to grow with high quality books. Yes, we do share many interests in writing children’s books, and your posts have really been stimulating for me. You are right, Emma’s Children’s Book Hub has been a place to grow as an author and receive the support of other authors.


  2. Patricia once again (as I have on your “About” page), I congratulate you on a very warm and inviting blog. I am already drawn by the concept of this blog and the journey you will take us on. The category range you will be covering is amazingly diverse and will teach us much. It takes a special person to open your home and heart to the needs of special children as you have done. Like you my husband also suffered a brain injury many years ago, and all your experiences will hold you in good steed in this new writing journey you are embarking on. I will follow with much interest and wish you well my friend.
    Once again Congratulations on a fabulous start, all the Best.

    • Diane,

      Thank you so much for you kind comments. I’m happy you like what I want to accomplish with my blog. And, I owe you a huge thank you for the hours you spent with me as I tried to bring this blog to life. Your support was incredible — a testimony to the relationships we have developed on the Hub. Still have some bugs to work out — but it’s up and running! Again, thank you for your patience and support — Patient Dreamer!


  3. Welcome to the blogging world, Patricia! What a wonderful start — your knowledge, experience and sensitivity will stand you in good stead in your chosen area of childrens’ fiction and I look forward to your future posts.

    May I be bold and recommend a couple of YA books about a teenager with Asperger’s Syndrome? Beverley Brenna (there’s a link to her website at the top of my list of “favorite writers” on my blog) has written two books about the same character, entitled “Wild Orchid” and “Waiting for No One”. They weave Bev’s concern for kids with special needs (she’s a former special ed teacher and consultant) and her love of the natural world.

    I’m so glad we’ve come to know each other through Emma’s Hub! All the best to you in this new phase of your writing career.


    • Wow, that was quick! I thank you for your kind words and suggestions. I will certainly will check out Beverly Brenna on your site. I’ve read mostly children’s and YA books about boys with Asperger’s Syndrome. My favorite adult novel on the subject, is Jodi Picoult’s “House Rules.”

      I’ve enjoyed getting to know you through the Hub and appreciate the inspiration you’ve given me. I really think we are lucky to have a creative, safe place to express ourselves and grow as writers. The friendships we’ve developed are priceless.

      Again, thank you!


  4. Dear Patricia,
    Bravo for this wonderful blog! I am so proud to be acknowledged in it – thank you so much. I think this is a hugely important topic, and I look forward to reading more of your reviews. I’ll be especially interested in any recommendations for good books that deal with mild Cerebral Palsy. I’ve found a few – but most of them deal with children who are more severely affected, in wheelchairs, etc.
    To top it off, reading this site prompted a new book idea for me! So thank you, thank you.

    • Emma,
      Thank you so much for reading my blog! I’m so happy you like what I’m doing. Autism Awareness Month really helped me focus it quickly, as I have a number of books to share. And, the journalist in me quickly surfaced — I wanted more depth than just reviewing books. I would never have pursued this, if it wasn’t for your promptings! Will keep my eyes open for books for children with mild Cerebral Palsy. Why don’t you and Hope write one. Let her write her story — even if you don’t publish it. Glad that I gave you a new book idea! You made my day!

    • Emma,
      I received a message today from Woodbine House Publishers thanking me for my thoughtful review of the OFF WE GO! series. They published a portion of my review on their site and linked my blog to their site. They asked me if I would be interested in receiving books they publish and consider reviewing them in the future. They also asked if they could add me to their bloggers list. I said yes. They made a point of telling me that it’s up to me whether or not I choose to review a book. They only publish special needs/developmental disabilities books. I looked at their books on Cerebral Palsy and they depict a child in a wheel chair. Will keep looking.

  5. Patricia,

    My mom sent me the link for your blog. I’m a vocational rehabilitation counselor in Michigan. I’ve primarily worked with adults, but starting this summer I will be serving students transitioning from high school. I also had a traumatic brain injury when I was 13. Thanks for your courage to educate. I look forward to following your blog.


    • Carrie,
      Your mother sent me a note telling me about your work and that she was going to send you my blog. So, it was nice to see your blog comment pop up in my e-mail. Sounds like you’re doing some very important work. I didn’t realize you had a brain injury. It sounds like it influenced your career choice, which is important. My injury was nearly 7 yrs ago, and it has influenced me to change my writing genres. I wish you the best. I hope you enjoy what I share.


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