The Best Childhood Books to Revisit During Social Distancing


Living in the present is proving to be a challenge in the current situation. With little clarity as to how long social distancing is to last, now is not the time to be thinking about the future either. Luckily, if you are feeling like dosing up on nostalgia from simpler times, there are countless books from our childhoods that will provide an easy read during these stressful times.

Naturally, the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling remains at the top of my reading list for this social distancing period. This book series has never failed to provide a bit of magic during times of hardship. With an overall message of hope, friendship and strength, there are many important themes to apply to our current context. With seven impressive sized books to the series, re-reading these childhood defining titles should help you pass a fair amount of time in peace. With amazing storylines that didn’t quite make the cut of the movies, such as Hermione’s SPEW and Voldemort’s backstory, these books will never fail to engage and inspire. Just as the ‘Wizarding World’ overcame dark times, we shall too!

In continuing with this theme of magic, The Wardstone Chronicles (also known as The Spooks) has numerous titles that are assured to reignite your childhood imagination. With witches, magical beasts, spirits and superstition, this book series has everything you could ever want from a dark fantasy series. Equally, with the author of the series, Joseph Delaney, having attended Lancaster University to study English, these books are sure to help those of you who are missing Lancaster life. Having also been brought up in Preston, he was inspired by Lancashire folk tales and locations. With cities in the book named ‘Priestown’, ‘Chipenden’ and ‘Pendle’, you are sure to have fun creating your own fantasy vision of Lancaster and its surrounding areas.

For those of us who are eagerly anticipating the upcoming prequel to The Hunger Games, now is a perfect time to jump back into the world of ‘Panem’. Although these books cover an incredibly dark concept, they nevertheless inspire messages of hope and perseverance. Admittedly, reading the books as an adolescent, I was only really interested in the event of the Hunger Games itself! Therefore, in rereading the books as slightly more mature adults, we can find various important themes to help us get through this isolation. Through the experiences of the characters in this trilogy, we can learn to fight the unpredictable battles that life throws in our direction.

Lastly, no one ought to feel shame for having been obsessed with The Twilight Saga! With vampires, werewolves and soppy romance, these books contained everything you needed to get you through your adolescence. Despite the film franchise having become something people love to hate, the books should not be dismissed. As cringe worthy as the fighting between team Jacob and team Edward was, it cannot be denied that books exploring vampires and werewolves always possess great lore. This lore is sure to keep you distracted during these testing times and maybe you will come to remember why you fell in love with these books in the first place.

Ultimately, at present, it is important that you go easy on yourself and take time to do things that help you find peace. With these books being steeped in nostalgia, going back and rereading the books that brought you so much joy when you were younger is an activity sure to brighten up your time during social distancing.

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