Welcome to the Horn Book's Family Reading blog, a place devoted to offering children's book recommendations and advice about the whats and whens and whos and hows of sharing books in the home. Find us on Twitter @HornBook and on Facebook at Facebook.com/TheHornBook

Five-plus months in...

…and is anyone thriving? If so, what’s your secret?!

Back in May, Miriam Steinberg-Egeth wrote this Family Reading post –- “About six weeks in” –- about reading about school: "I found myself rejecting book after book: too much about school, too many friends playing together, too much excitement outside the house..." If you do want books about school, for the sense of normalcy* they can provide, our annual back-to-school issue of Notes from the Horn Book has a top selection, including a hilarious Five Questions interview with Ryan T. Higgins, author of We Will Rock Our Classmates (sequel to We Don’t Eat Our Classmates). *May we also suggest – as Miriam does – the Wayside School books, including Louis Sachar’s latest – for normalized non-normalcy?

My own kids have been reading lots of graphic novels (including many library requests now that we can pick up contactlessly; see also “Middle-Grade Graphic Novels Make Good”); manga (to go along with the hours and hours of anime they’ve been watching); and read-alouds of the All-of-a-Kind Family books, also my go-tos for comfort, though unlike them, I never conceived of Sarah as a vigilante fighter with a flamethrower.

With summer winding down and school about to start (in whatever form; ours is virtual for the older one, some still-mushily defined virtual in-person-maybe option for the little one that we’re able to opt out of), remember to consider and be gentle to our educators, kids, selves, and others. It’s another huge change for school-age families, and the variables are mind-erasing. If Mrs. Gorf shows up -– call for help.

Elissa Gershowitz

Elissa Gershowitz is executive editor of The Horn Book, Inc. She holds an MA from the Center for the Study of Children's Literature at Simmons University and a BA from Oberlin College.

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