Books for Crazy Days

This week has been just a little crazy..

I’ll start with Tuesday: the first day of classes after reading break. It was a surprisingly good day. Our first class was cataloguing and our professor always has interesting activities for us. This week he had us try to create a faceted classification system for Lego. How on earth can a professor expect you to focus on classifying things when there’s a pile of Lego in front of you?! That was tough. My neighbour and I eventually satisfied our inner children by creating the awesome man on a car on a boat structure below. That was really the highlight of the day.

lego structure

Then there was Wednesday. The CRAZY day. 11 hours at school. One group project meeting, one information session, one lunch date with a librarian friend, one three hour class (in which I did a presentation), one YAACS meeting, dinner with a classmate, and finally, one super stellar class where Kit Pearson and Sarah Ellis talked for a whole hour and a half. And then I drove home and fell into bed. Holy crackers. What a day!

That night, Kit Pearson and Sarah Ellis were guest speaking in one of the LIBR classes, and they opened it up to anyone else that wanted to come. I was, uh, kind of excited, and I got to speak to Kit Pearson for a few minutes! I told her how one of the very best days of my childhood was the one where I got to go to Victoria for the Red Cedar Book Awards and I got to meet her, my favourite author. She signed my book that day, and at some point, while I was busy carrying it everywhere with me in the years following that day, I lost it. Luckily, she was more than happy to sign my replacement copy- hooray!

kit pearson autograph

When she was speaking, Kit Pearson said so many things that had me wanting to jump out of my chair and scream “I know EXACTLY what you mean!!” She was talking about books for middle grade readers, and why she writes for that age group. She talked about how those were the books that really influenced her and stuck with her throughout her life, and about the realism in the books– how they strive to reflect the lives of children, and how they leave readers not necessarily with the perfect ending, but with that little bit of hope. I could totally relate. The ages of 9-12 were the best reading years of my life. I lived in this magical world that seamlessly shifted between reality and the fictional worlds of my books. I was a busy kid, but when I wasn’t busy with sports or other activities, I read, and I read, and I found so much comfort and joy in those books. To this day, reading Awake and Dreaming is like getting a big hug from an old friend. If I have a bad day, Kit Pearson can always make me feel better.

With all the craziness of library school, I’ve been thinking a lot about the books that make me feel better when I’m overwhelmed, exhausted, or when I’ve just had a bad day.

What are your top picks?

Mine are:

  • “Awake and Dreaming” by Kit Pearson
  • “A Difficult Day” by Eugenie Fernandes.

I’d like to draw your attention to the second book. This book has been read so many times in my household that the pages are falling out. Here’s what I’ve learned from it: when you are having a bad day, you should most definitely, positively, imagine that you are having a bath in a bowl of chicken noodle soup, and then you should have milk and cookies under your bed. It’s a fool-proof plan.

difficultday    soup    cookies

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