Lip Reader

lip reader

Who is Shanna Groves?

Shanna Groves was diagnosed with progressive hearing loss at the age of 27 after the birth of her first child. She has written about her hearing journey in Hearing Loss Magazine, The Kansas City Star, MOMSense, and the book A CUP OF COMFORT FOR NURSES(Adams Media). LIP READER is her second book and her first novel. A member of the Hearing Loss Association of America and the National Association of Memoir Writers, Shanna lives in the Midwest with her family. (from her blog at:

Shanna_Lip Reader6You know? I can’t remember when I “met” Shanna Groves. I do know that it was online, and if I know my habits as well as I think I do, it was likely in a hearing loss forum or message board for those with hearing loss. Shanna’s story plucked my heart’s strings, in part because I was 27-years-old and had just had my son when I began losing my hearing as well. I think the biggest reason Shanna’s story resonates with me, is that she is like so many young adults who were born with normal hearing and discover they are slipping into a silent world. Her articles, testimony and writing are superb, and I feel like I can easily identify with her when I read her thoughts.

Shanna has written her first novel, Lip Reader. I read the book in two days. It is not simply because the characters in the story have lively personalities. The way they talk and interact are so “real”, so much like “home” that you find yourself wrapped up in the story of this family in Oklahoma. The way that Shanna writes about hearing loss, makes it abundantly clear that she lives with it herself. Only someone who has experienced it firsthand, could write about the frustrations, humor, loneliness and love of those who live with hearing loss.

I recommend buying a copy for those in your life who may not understand what it means to live with hearing loss day in and day out. Shanna poignantly identifies in her characters what it means to live with hearing loss, or to love someone who does.

What is the book about?

When Rea Traylor flees with her children to see her estranged parents in 1980’s Oklahoma, surprises follow. It is up to Rea’s young daughter, Sapphie, to solve the mystery of her mother’s secret life.

Lip Reader features a colorful cast of characters-an unkempt uncle living in a school bus; a grandfather who preaches in a rundown church; a grandmother born deaf; an aunt fluent in sign language but lacking in social graces; and Sapphie, who finds courage and hope despite mother Rea’s unthinkable act of betrayal.

Lip Reader is now available through Amazon, Barnes and Nobles, or Shanna’s website. I’ve listed the links below. This is a small investment in a BIG book.

Amazon: Click here

Barnes and Noble: Click here

Order through Shanna’s website: Click here

Denise Portis

© 2009 Hearing Loss Journal

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