Everyone seems to have their own special ritual that they use to unwind before going to sleep at night. Some folks turn off their computers and phones, watch TV, take a bath, sniff lavender, or sip chamomile tea. As for me, I like to read children’s books. Full disclosure: I am an adult with no children at home, and I am not a children’s librarian.
Like many people who read to relax, I take some time before going to sleep to forget about the day’s minutiae and just concentrate on my book. To accomplish this soothing nighttime ritual, I need to have the right book for this very special time. I love mysteries, but then I want to keep reading to find out what happens next – the suspense of it all will keep my mind churning. Likewise, Young Adult books can sometimes be too angst-filled and fretful for bedtime. So, I turn to children’s novels, specifically those for grades 5-8. Such books are often sophisticated enough to hold my interest. Moreover, no matter what the story is about, these stories seem to strike the right balance of struggle, humor, poignancy, and hope. It is with this promise, that there is hope for tomorrow, that I can be lulled to sleep.