Ask the Book Doctor!

Britain’s Guardian newspaper’s book review section is absolutely wonderful, but, though I fantasize about a future in which I can spend my Sunday morning dreamily perusing its recommendations, right now I need to know about the books I need to know about, especially for my children. We’re headed out camping this summer and I want some books to introduce the idea of sleeping outside in a tent and eating food that tastes like burned. So, I asked the Book Doctor. The Book Doctor is the Guardian‘s books editor, Julia Eccleshare, and her column will help you find the right “book prescription” for your child. The Book Doctor helped me find the best children’s books on camping, books to help Little E love plants and gardening, and some new ideas for baby books for Tiny J (not to mention as gifts for the enormous onslaught of beautiful new babies being born this summer). Particularly useful are the Book Doctor’s recommendations for children going through a hard time: what feminist books are a good next step for a child who is encountering overt sexism for the first time? Where can a parent or teacher find books that normalize same-sex relationships? What are the best books for children who feel “weird” or different? Because the Book Doctor is based in England, I have found that her recommended books are not always as easy to find in North America, but great writing crosses borders and, thankfully, most libraries let you suggest purchases. If you have a problem that might be solved by just the right book, the Book Doctor might be just the health care provider for you and your family.

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