The Sound of All Things

by Myron Uhlberg
Illustrated by Ted Papoulas
Experience the sights and sounds of 1930s Brooklyn and Coney Island through the eyes—and ears—of a hearing boy and his deaf parents.
Price: $17.95
  • ISBN: 9781561458332
  • Publication date: 03/01/2016
  • Page Count: 36
  • Size: 11" x 9"
  • Age Range: 6-10


Experience the sights and sounds of 1930s Brooklyn and Coney Island through the eyes—and ears—of a hearing boy and his deaf parents.

A Brooklyn family takes an outing to Coney Island, where they enjoy the rides, the food, and the sights. The father longs to know how everything sounds. Though his son does his best to interpret their noisy surroundings through sign language, he struggles to convey the subtle differences between the “loud” of the ocean and the “loud” of a roller coaster. When the family drops in at the library after dinner, the boy makes a discovery. Perhaps the words he needs are within reach, after all.

Myron Uhlberg’s story, based on his own childhood experiences, covers the almost unique topic within children’s books of children raised by deaf parents. Ted Papoulas beautifully and sensitively portrays the family’s day to bring the whole experience to life for readers.


Myron Uhlberg


Myron Uhlberg is the author of several picture books. A retired businessman, he lives in California.

Ted Papoulas


Ted Papoulas earned his illustration degree from Pratt Institute, where he fell in love with Brooklyn, a continual source of inspiration for his art. The Sound of All Things was his first picture book. He lives in New Jersey.


“A tender demonstration of how familial love is like translationinexact, difficult, and beautiful.” ―Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW

“Newcomer Papoulas’s illustrations are a love letter to Coney Island at its heyday…” ―Publishers Weekly

“Lovely tribute to a bygone era and a boy’s commemoration of his parents.” ―School Library Journal

“Uhlberg…writes knowingly of the distinctly separate hearing and deaf worlds in which he grew up…” ―Booklist Online


Notable Books for a Global Society ―International Literacy Association, 2017

Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People ―National Council for the Social Studies, Children’s Book Council, 2017

CCBC Choices (Understanding Oneself and Others) ―Cooperative Children’s Book Center, 2017

Best Children’s Books of the Year (Starred) ― Bank Street College of Education, 2017

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (Starred, Intermediate) ―Kansas National Education Association

Alabama Camellia Award (Nominee, Grades 2-3) ―Alabama Department of Education, 2017-2018

Arkansas Diamond Primary Book Awards (Nominee) ―Arkansas Department of Education, 2018-2019

Delaware Diamonds (Nominee, 3-5) ―Diamond State Reading Association, 2017-2018

Golden Sower Award (Nominee, Picture Book) ―Nebraska Library Association, 2018-2019

Keystone to Reading Elementary Book Award (Intermediate Nominee) ―Keystone State Reading Association, 2017-2018

More Details

AR Level: 3.7
F&P: GRL Q, Gr 4, Genre B
Lexile: 650L
Themes: Deaf Experience, Sign Language, Vocabulary
BISAC 1: JUV013060 JUVENILE FICTION / Family / Parents
BISAC 3: JUV039150 JUVENILE FICTION /Social Issues / Special Needs