Susan laughs, she sings. she rides, she swings.
She gets angry, she gets sad, she is good, she is bad...
Told in rhyme, this story follows Susan through a series of familiar activities. She swims with her father, works hard in school, plays with her friends and even rides a horse. Lively, thoughtfully drawn illustrations reveal a portrait of a busy, happy little girl with whom younger readers will identify. Not until the end of the story is it revealed that Susan uses a wheelchair.
Told with insight, and without sentimentality, here is an inspiring look at one spunky little girl whose physical disability is never seen as a handicap.
About the Author
Jeanne Willis lives in London, England with her husband and two children.
Tony Ross has illustrated more than 50 books for children, and has won many illustration awards. Mr. Ross lives with his wife and daughter in Cheshire, England.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Susan Laughs is a great, non-cheesy, non-preachy picture book about a red-headed little girl who is irrepressible, creative and active. Not until the last page is it revealed that Susan is in a wheelchair and ¿that is Susan through and through- just like me, just like you.¿ British team Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross have created a picture book where the text and pictures marry seamlessly. For fans of Olivia, Madeline or David this will be a fun addition to their libraries. In a vignette where Susan is sometimes shy and sometimes loud, ¿Susan¿s angry, Susan¿s proud¿ our heroine is first hiding quietly beneath the drapes, then startling the cat, followed by a scowl as the cat has made his displeasure known by scratching her face, then a peaceful smile as she sports a new set of band-aids on each cheek.This book is suitable for story times and belongs in classrooms as well. The singsong words and humorous pencil and crayon art set a light, joyous tone that will create a comfortable entry point for discussing disabilities. But this book could also be used with no discussion, or in story times about discussing feelings or daily life. For librarians some more subtle lessons can also be taken from this text: do not view disabled patrons based on what you believe they can not do, do not treat these patrons as a disability rather than a person, enable access to not only all areas of your library but all services and programs so that you are providing an experience of seamless inclusion, like what Susan¿s friends and family offer in this book. In Reference and Information Services: An Introduction Frances F. Jacobson and Ellen D. Sutton point out that service to all¿encompasses individuals with a variety of needs¿ and that developing library services ¿for specific populations within our society is an essential corollary to developing services to the majority.¿ Furthermore ¿service to specific populations is an ethical as well as legal¿ obligation and that we should not only provide service without discrimination but ¿be advocates for members of these groups to ensure them equitable access to information and materials. ¿ I would argue that in presenting programs and readers advisory to the public, our knowledge and use of excellent materials such as Susan Laughs help speak to both inclusion and the performance of a form of advocacy through educating readers.Willis, Jeanne. Susan Laughs. Illus. by Tony Ross. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1999. Print.Bopp, Richard E. and Smith, Linda C. Reference and Information Services: An Introduction. Englewood, Colorado: Greenwood Publishing Group, 2001. Print.
I just read this book for the first time today. The title caught my eye and I was pleasantly pleased and surprised with the story. The pictures were engaging showing Susan performing all kinds of activities and having many emotions, and then at the very end Susan is depicted for the first time in a wheel chair. It really gets its message across how this little girl is just like anyone else, but yes, she does use a wheelchair. Excellent!