Before the Coronavirus put all of us under quarantine, my day tended to look like this: Wake up. Read. Go to work. Read. Come home. Read. Go to bed. Repeat. (Other details include walking my dog, watching Gilmore Girls for the 800th time with my husband, and FaceTiming with my 18-month-old niece Eloise.)
At the beginning of the COVID-19 quarantine, I thought reading would be my salvation, as it had shown itself to be throughout my life. I was wrong. The thing that I wasn’t prepared for was how anxious I would feel, for how often the news would be so horrifying, and for the fear I would feel for not just my family and friends, but for people around the world. I couldn’t get through a few simple pages without realizing I hadn’t focused on a single word.
But then I realized maybe it isn’t reading that’s the problem, but the book itself. Reading wasn’t a comfort on its own anymore. I needed a comfort book.
Comfort reads during the quarantine have been the most important piece of happy distraction. If you’re reading this, then you’re probably a reader like us. So along with a few of my teammates, we’ve come up with a list of our favorite feel-good books. All of these books are available through the BMLP website.
Comfort Reads for the Quarantine – Parents
If You’ve Got Mail is the comfort movie for all book-lovers, then How to Fine Love in a Bookshop is the comfort book equivalent. Romantic, charming, a large cast of characters, and set in a quaint English countryside, Bookshop is one of those perfect comfort reads that transport us out of quarantine by the page.
Michelle Obama opens her memoir telling the reader that one of her least favorite questions adults ask children is what they want to become when they grow up–as if becoming is a finite thing. And so begins the former First Lady’s collection of life stories, the hits and the misses, and the ultimate message of hope. What a comfort!
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, Less is about struggling novelist Arthur Less and his round-the-world adventure all to avoid attending the wedding of his former partner. Hilarious, romantic, and optimistic, it really doesn’t get much better than this when you’re looking for comfort during this quarantine.
Based on the popular web-feature, Texts from Jane Eyre is so hilarious and delightfully modern, and is the perfect bedtime read to help with the nighttime scaries. The synopsis reads, “Everyone knows that if Scarlett O’Hara had an unlimited text-and-data plan, she’d constantly try to tempt Ashley away from Melanie with suggestive messages. If Mr. Rochester could text Jane Eyre, his ardent missives would obviously be in all-caps. And Daisy Buchanan would not only text while driving, she’d text you to pick her up after she totaled her car.” Enough said, right?
Comfort Reads for the Quarantine – Kids
If you have an adventurer in the family who’s itching to get out there, the Oregon Trail Choose Your Own Adventure series is great for them. A little bit of history and a little bit of travel is just what the doctor ordered!
“Narwhal is a happy-go-lucky narwhal. Jelly is a no-nonsense jellyfish. The two might not have a lot in common, but they do they love waffles, parties and adventures.” We have been hand-selling the Narwhal and Jelly series ever since they first came out, and now’s the perfect time to read them together.
We’re obsessed with Jason Reynolds at BMLP. If he’s written it, we’ve read it, and we’ve probably told you and your family to read it, too. In Look Both Ways, Reynolds offers children a lesson in perspective through ten stories, one per block, about what happens when we aren’t paying attention, and what other people can teach us along the way.
We understand how hard quarantine has been. We hope to be back in our retail space soon, which would mean we’d be back to seeing our amazing customers again! But until then, your health and safety are our top priorities. We hope these books are able to offer you some comfort while the Coronavirus has us all home, staying safe.
Did you know we have a Podcast? B**K It! episode 3 talks all about comfort reads for the quarantine! Hear more of our recommendations here, and check out our other episodes!