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Dear Parents, 

Thank you so much for visiting Almigal's website.
 
Believe me, I know first-hand just how overwhelming and confusing it can be to learn that your child has a hearing loss.  I also know that you will be diligently working the search engines looking for explanations, resources and answers. Fortunately there are so many places to turn for guidance and  there is so much available information on the internet.

Below is just a sample of some of the wonderful organizations out there to help you and your family sort through this and learn as much as you can.

I am not personally endorsing these programs, but they all have wonderful reputations.

Think positive, reach out for assistance and believe in your child...Always remember, you are their #1 advocate.

I will periodically update this information to include blogs, recommended reading and anything I get my hands on that I think will be helpful.

Also, please feel free to send me an email if there's anything I can help you with or anything you would like me to share with other parents.  

Warmest regards,
Wendy
Reviews from Parents and Grown-Ups

Mom’s Choice Award Gold Winner

Almigal won Best Children’s Picture Book in the
2013 National Indie Excellence Awards!

Netgalley Review on July 9: “C's Review - I thought it was a good story. I like how she started wearing hear aids and ended up with the cochlear implant (mom helped me with that word). The colors in the book were really bright and I loved the pink of the implant. I was worried she would be in huge trouble when they got wet and that she'd have to wear hearing aids again. It was pretty crazy her mom dried them with the blow dryer. Mom's Review - This was a great story, with some good lessons about what it is like to battle hearing loss. The main character Almigal is strong and brave, but also a fun loving kid. I love that she describes all the things she wants to hear and once she can she focuses on them again! It really touched my heart and you can't ever go wrong with a story that teaches your kids about acceptance and differences!”
- Gina Brown: Reviewer at www.readingteam.blogspot.com

Netgalley Review on July 9: "Let's Hear it for Almigal by Wendy Kupfer and Illustrated by Tammie Lyon is a children's book that tells the story of a little girl named Almigal (Ali) who has hearing loss and gets cochlear implants. Wendy, the author of this book writes it from experience, having a daughter named Ali who had hearing problems. This story follows Almigal as she wants to hear every sound. She mentions sounds that she is unable to hear and how she is sad not being able to hear her parents tell her they love her at night. One day, Almigal’s doctor tells her that she should get cochlear implants. Almigal talks about how she was scared, but how the surgery was “a piece of cake.” The story then follows Almigal as she is able to hear the things she once could not. I think this story is a good read for children, but especially for kids with hearing loss. Almigal’s courage and positive outlook should help encourage children with these types of issues. I think it is great that there is a book for these kids with a character they can relate to. I liked the cute pictures in the book as well. I think this book can be a great addition to a child's library.”
- Zac Weikal: Reviewer at Zac’s Blog

Netgalley Review on July 9: “This story was written by a mother with a little girl who needed something special in order to hear. It is a celebration of getting a life changing operation to be able to hear. It is told from the child's perspective and wonderfully illustrated to keep the child's attention from beginning to end. Excellent.”
- Bill Tillman: Reviewer

Netgalley Review on July 11: “I definitely want to add this to my library. It's a very cute book! The beginning start with how everyone is different and they learn from each other. Other themes include working hard to learn a new skill (such as hearing with a cochlear implant) and taking care of their belongings (especially if it is expensive). Pearl in the Book: I simply love the story and illustrations. Children should read books where they see hearing aids and cochlear implants. It's a cute message about a little girl who wants to be able to hear her parents whisper they love her as they tuck her in to bed. I will definitely suggest it to people to read. I'm interested to know what my Deaf friends think of this book.”
- Kris Ellsworth: Reviewr at Pearls of Great Worth

Netgalley Review on July 12: “This cute picture book is the story of a girl with hearing loss who gives up her hearing aids for a pink (cotton candy pink!) cochlear implant. Full disclosure time: my son has a cochlear implant. The author has a daughter with hearing loss as well. This book is full of self affirmation and joy over hearing that it's not hard to believe, like Almigal says, she's the luckiest girl in the world. The illustrations are cute and cartoonish, with enough realism and detail for the story. I really liked this book. I do feel that the author brushed over the hard work it takes to get kids using an implant, and I wish the character were a boy, but this book would be great for any students who have classmates with implants to introduce them to the concept of what they are, as well as any students receiving implants. Highly recommended. This review is based on a publisher supplied electronic copy.”
- Art Spencer: Librarian at Arthur Jacobsen Elementary

Netgalley Review on July 19: “I was recently given the opportunity to review the book Let's Hear It For Almigal which is a recent release from author Wendy Kupfer and illustrated by Tammie Lyon. This book is a children's hardcover book and is so close to my heart. Not because I know the author or illustrator but because it is about a little girl who has a hearing loss. I, too, have a hearing loss. Not everyone is privy to that information about me. Only my closest friends and colleagues. I have always had a hearing loss - I was treated with tubes in my ears when I was in kindergarten - but that didn't do anything to help my hearing. I have what is commonly known as a "cookie bite" hearing loss which means that I can hear low tones and I can hear high frequencies but that "middle of the road" where most people speak? Can't hear it. Know what else? I have hearing aides. Yes. Bionic ears. And, I'm not even 40. But, I didn't get the aides until my kids were 2 and 3. Amazing. If my BFF's former roommate (and now friend of mine!) wasn't an audiologist, I probably still wouldn't have them. It took a lot of persuading to get me into these aides. Now, I am on my second set (just got them last month!) and do not know what I would do without them. I am still very self conscious about them because not many people are familiar with hearing loss as a disability that affects younger people. I think the perception is of the old grandma or grandpa with hearing aides -- dead batteries, feedback, all kinds of things that can go wrong, but I really do think that most people think that only older people have hearing loss. There are many people who have learned of my loss but still can not believe that I have it. And the strange looks I get when they first see my aides if they were not aware of them? As I said before, I am definitely very conscious of it but becoming less so as time goes on. A recent conversation with Dr. Maegan helped me with that. She doesn't think that people are looking at me funny or thinking less of me, but that they are simply intrigued by the aides -- just because they're curious. In my heart, I know she's right but it's still feels weird for people to be checking my ears out. My children are very familiar with my bionic ears. As well, we used to have a deaf dog who we signed too. Our dog, Sudz, was born deaf and was a great springboard for conversations about hearing loss. I miss him terribly but we may soon foster another deaf Boxer pup since we're experienced in this disability in dogs. On with the book - I loved Let's Hear It For Almigal for so many reasons. The book was not only about what hearing loss is (for example Almigal couldn't hear her parents say "we love you" after tucking her in at night, even with her aides) but it explains, in kid terminology, what hearing aides are and what cochlear implants are as well. It also tells how all of the kids in Almigal's class are different - one speaks a foreign language, one wears glasses, and yet another wears hearing aides just like she does. I think these are the most important aspects of the book. I believe that children should learn about what disabilities are out there. I believe that their knowledge is the key to treating all kids equally. Just because a child wears glasses or hearing aides does not mean that they're different, it just means that they need support to see or hear as well as others. It doesn't make them any less smart, pretty or joyous. The illustrations are beautiful as well. Overall, the book is a winner. I am pretty sure I'll be buying this book for presents during the upcoming holiday season. Even better? 5% of all sales go to support children with hearing loss. Please come back to the blog tomorrow to read a guest post by Almigal!”
- Kristie Worrell: Reviewer at Family, Scrabooks and Coffee

Netgalley Review on July 21: “A unique story to show us all, children and parent alike, how our differences are what make us who we are. This story helps a young girl with Cochlear Implants accept her uniqueness in a BRIGHT PINK way!”
- Curtis Cecil: Reviewer at Family Christian Stores

CBS Story:
www.cbs12.com

May 26, 2013 interview on BlogTalk Radio:
www.blogtalkradio.com/lifebeatsradio/2013/05/26/author-wendy-kupfer

June 19, 2013 interview on BlogTalk Radio:
www.blogtalkradio.com/niaandfriends/2013/06/19/wendy-kupfer--lets-hear-it-for-almigal

The Artsy Reader Girl Review on July 10:
thatartsyreadergirl.blogspot.com/2012/07/inner-child-lets-hear-it-for-almigal-by.html

Bibliophilia, Please
Review on July 23: www.goodreads.com/book/show/15702568-let-s-hear-it-for-almigal

Family, Scrapbooks and Coffee Review:
needcoffeeplease.blogspot.com/2012/07/lets-hear-it-for-almigal.html
Guest Post: needcoffeeplease.blogspot.com/2012/07/almigals-first-blog.html

Live to Read Guest Post and Giveaway on July 29:
livetoread-krystal.blogspot.com/2012/07/lets-hear-it-for-almigal-guest-post-and.html

Hezzi D’s Books and Cooks Review on July 30:
www.hezzi-dsbooksandcooks.blogspot.com/2012/07/lets-hear-it-for-almigal-by-wendy-kupfer.html

I Don’t Stop Believing Review on August 15:
idontstopbelieving.blogspot.com/2012/08/lets-hear-it-for-almigal.html

Review from Librarything Winner Annie Michelle on October 9:
“What a wonderful book and a great subject, one that is not discussed much, if ever. The illustrations are wonderfully fun and reminiscent of the “Fancy Nancy” books. Almigal is a happy spitfire of a little girl who just wants to hear, she wants to hear everything! The birds outside, her ballet music, her friends but, most of all she wants to hear her mommy and daddy telling her how much they love her. She has many friends and each one is different and special and when she gets her new cochlear implants she has a lot fun with her two puppies and a certain incident with a swimming pool. This is a great, fun and very informative book and I am glad it is on my Children’s bookshelf. I loved this book, thank You for sending it my way...this is a 5 star most excellent read for me. I will post a review on goodreads, librarything, twitter@ajoyim, facebook, Amazon and Barnes & Noble.”

The Midwest Book Review on December 7, 2012: "To have a chance to hear the world is one not to be wasted. "Let's Hear it for Almigal" follows a young hard of hearing girl as she receives her cochlear implant and begins to hear the world clearly and face some of the difficulties that come with ihe cievices. A children's picturebook with a powerful message for young people who may soon have to use these devices, "Let's Hear It for Almigal" is not to be missed for picturebook collections focusing on disabilities."

ForeWord Review on August 22: www.forewordreviews.com/reviews/lets-hear-it-for-amigal

Kirkus Review on Nov. 6th, 2012: "An exuberant, cotton-candy pink introduction to hearing loss and cochlear implants for ages 5 and up. Little Almigal’s hearing loss doesn’t get much better with hearing aids. While Ali’s friend Penelope, whose hearing aids work for her, uses both her voice and signs to communicate, Almigal only knows a word or two of sign language, so she’s frustrated at missing out on the sounds in her world. She declares that she needs “to hear every single sound in the whole entire universe!”—especially her parents saying “We love you Almigal” when she’s in bed and not wearing her hearing aids. Her doctor suggests cochlear implants to improve her hearing, and Almigal is all for it. The book gently covers Almigal’s trip to the hospital for the operation and the importance of handling the implants carefully, as displayed in episodes where Almigal fails to treat the implants properly, thus learning how important that care can be. The implants successfully help Almigal hear all the things she’d been missing. Although the story skips the controversy surrounding cochlear implants and their place in the deaf community, the cheerful inclusiveness will be a welcome introduction for children. Kupfer—whose own daughter, Ali, was diagnosed with profound hearing loss at 10 months of age—celebrates uniqueness, while the delightful, full-page illustrations show the lively heroine and her friends and family enjoying their differences. Almigal considers herself to be the luckiest girl in the world. “Do you want to know why?” she asks. “Because I have so many friends and each one is different.” The charming story of a brave child’s decision to make her life better."

"Let’s Hear It For Wendy Kupfer! An avid and outspoken supporter of the deaf and hard of hearing community, Wendy’s most recent venture into the life of Almigal is yet another example of her desire to bring compassion and awareness to the number one birth defect that impacts 12,000 children in the United States a year. The spunky and spirited voice of Almigal shines through the pages and highlights the impact that cochlear implant technology can have in helping these children hear every single sound in the whole entire universe! More so, Let’s Hear It for Almigal is a wonderful reminder to all that what makes us different is actually what makes us truly unique."
- Fred F. Telischi, MEE, MD, FACS, James R. Chandler Chair in Otolaryngology
Chairman of Otolaryngology and Professor, Neurological Surgery and Biomedical Engineering
University of Miami Miller School of Medicine

"Let’s Hear It For Almigal by Wendy Kupfer and illustrated by Tammie Lyon is a wonderful book that accurately helps young children to understand the special nature of being deaf. It is very supportive of cochlear implantation and also of American Sign Language. Most of all it is a book of acceptance and understanding for all the differences that makes a person special.  Congratulations to Wendy and Tammie and to all of us who care for children."
-Thomas J. Balkany, MD, FACS, FAAP, Hotchkiss Professor and Director
University of Miami Ear Institute Chairman Emeritus, Department of Otolaryngology
Professor of Neurological Surgery and Pediatrics

Reviews from Parents and Grown-Ups
"You can't help but fall in love with Almigal."
"Let's Hear It For Almigal is hands down one of the best books I've read lately for children!"
"Thank you for this book."
"Definitely a must-read for all kids."
"Parents...get this!"
"Almigal is a great role model."
"Tears!  Great book.  Thanks for writing it Wendy."
"Get this book for every child who has ever felt different or out of place"
"Let's Hear It For Almigal" is "about the diversity around us and that everyone has something different about them."
"Almigal's upbeat attitude is contagious!"
"I simply love the story and illustrations."
"Overall, the book is a winner."
"Thanks Almigal for helping us all understand that our uniqueness make us who we are!"
"Adorable and endearing"
"My daughter loves this book so much...we read it every single night...sometimes more than once."
"This is a wonderful story for all children.  It celebrates the diversity of those around them."

Reviews from Almigal's Friends
"My favorite part is when Almigal's parents came into the room and said I love you and she heard it."
"My favorite part is her best friend has a twin and I have a twin."
"I thought it was funny when the dog took the implants."
"The best part is when Almigal went to the hospital so she could hear...and all her friends came to visit."
"I thought it was funny when she jumped in the pool and her implants got wet."

Online Blog Reviews
www.specialneeds.com/products-and-services/hearing-impairment-or-deaf/book-review-lets-hear-it-almigal
www.ardinger.typepad.com/bliss/2012/07/lets-hear-it-for-almigal-book-review.html
www.socialcafemag.com/lets-hear-it-for-almigal-book-review/
www.unconventionallibrarian.com/2012/07/07/hear-almigal/
www.mariasspace.com/2012/05/lets-hear-it-for-almigal-stems.html
www.wakingbraincells.com/2012/06/18/review-lets-hear-it-for-almigal-by-wendy-kupfer/
www.idontstopbelieving.blogspot.com/2012/08/lets-hear-it-for-almigal.html
www.pearlsofgreatworth.blogspot.com/2012/07/book-review-lets-hear-it-for-almigal.html
www.bookdragon.si.edu/2012/06/26/lets-hear-it-for-almigal-by-wendy-kupfer-illustrated-by-tammie-lyon/
www.specialchildren.about.com/u/reviews/goodbooks/writeareview/Let-s-Hear-It-for-Almigal.htm
www.journals.lww.com/thehearingjournal/Fulltext/2012/06001/Storybook_Gives_Confidence_to_Hearing_Impaired.1.aspx
www.idratherbecaving.blogspot.com/2012/07/lets-hear-it-for-almigal.html
www.qualityoflifemagazine.com/LetsHearItForAlmigal.html
www.audiology.advanceweb.com/News/News-Watch/New-Picture-Book-About-Hearing-Loss-in-Children.aspx