Give Me a Sign (Hardcover)
July/August 2023 Kids Indie Next List
“Such a compelling story about finding yourself at summer camp that everyone can relate to, with wonderful representation. This book will mean so much to so many people. I learned so much about Deaf culture. Keep this book on your radar!”
— McKenna Moran, Anderson's Bookshops, Naperville, IL
Jenny Han meets CODA in this big-hearted YA debut about first love and Deaf pride at a summer camp.
Lilah is stuck in the middle. At least, that’s what having a hearing loss seems like sometimes—when you don’t feel “deaf enough” to identify as Deaf or hearing enough to meet the world’s expectations. But this summer, Lilah is ready for a change.
When Lilah becomes a counselor at a summer camp for the deaf and blind, her plan is to brush up on her ASL. Once there, she also finds a community. There are cute British lifeguards who break hearts but not rules, a YouTuber who’s just a bit desperate for clout, the campers Lilah’s responsible for (and overwhelmed by)—and then there’s Isaac, the dreamy Deaf counselor who volunteers to help Lilah with her signing.
Romance was never on the agenda, and Lilah’s not positive Isaac likes her that way. But all signs seem to point to love. Unless she’s reading them wrong? One thing’s for sure: Lilah wanted change, and things here . . . they're certainly different than what she’s used to.
About the Author
Anna Sortino is a young adult author who writes stories about disabled characters living their lives and falling in love. She’s Deaf and passionate about diverse representation in media. Born and raised in the Chicagoland area, Anna has since lived in different cities from coast to coast, spending her free time exploring nature with her dog or reading on the couch with her cat. Give Me a Sign is her debut novel. You can find her at AnnaSortino.com or @AnnaKSortino.
Praise for Give Me a Sign
An Indie Next Pick
An Indies Introduce Summer/Fall 2023 Selection
A Junior Library Guild Selection
An Amazon Best Book of the Month
A NYPL Best Book of the Year
"Give Me a Sign is a charming story about fitting in, finding your community, and falling in love at summer camp. This heartwarming debut is a beautifully nuanced representation of Deaf culture and what it means to find your voice in a society that doesn’t want to listen. —Aiden Thomas, New York Times bestselling author of Cemetery Boys
"A book that proves love is a universal language and acceptance often comes from the inside out. This story is both fun and thought-provoking, both light and heartfelt. It is definitely a new favorite.” —Kasie West, author of Sunkissed and The Fill-In Boyfriend
★ "Sortino celebrates Deaf culture and identity in this endearingly funny slow-burn rom-com debut . . . . Sortino highlights a variety of Deaf experiences, exploring the community’s pride and culture, as well as the trauma some Deaf individuals face in interactions with strangers and loved ones alike." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
"A heartwarming and tender coming-of-age story that brilliantly explores what it means to fully lean in to who you are. Full of romance, friendships and nostalgia, this book will make you want to relive your best high school summers." —Claire Ahn, author of I Guess I Live Here Now
"Sweet and swoony. Anna Sortino gives us the perfect summer romance while deftly tackling the nuanced culture of the diverse Deaf community. Give Me a Sign is a profoundly charming story that has something for everyone—summer camp vibes, heartfelt connections, and characters you instantly root for.” —Grace K. Shim, author of The Noh Family
"A thoughtful exploration of Deaf culture, how we communicate and connect, and what it means to belong, all wrapped up in a swoon-worthy summer camp romance." —Kaitlyn Hill, author of Love from Scratch
"One of the most exciting and fun books I’ve read this summer. . . . Whether you’re deaf or not, the book makes sure to focus on issues teens are dealing with such as romance, drama between friends, and trying to find your place." —Culturess
"A sweet and thoughtful romp, Anna Sortino’s debut novel navigates the intricacies of Deaf culture and how one girl finds her place in it. . . . Give Me a Sign is not only a point of representation for folks looking for themselves in a fun read but also a reminder that just because someone can’t hear or speak doesn’t mean they don’t have a voice." —BookPage
"Readers will love this sincere Deaf coming-of-age story." —Kirkus Reviews
"Written from Lilah’s point of view, the first-person narrative is involving, particularly for romance fans. An intriguing aspect of the book is Sortino’s sensitive portrayal of characters who are deaf in varying degrees and who manage communication in different ways. . . . A promising first novel for Sortino." —Booklist
"This debut will please readers looking for a sweet love story while also providing a nuanced and thoughtful exploration of some of the issues those in the Deaf community face." —School Library Journal