When Covid-19 hit in the spring of 2020, apparently authors and illustrators got to work. A year later, books began to appear that will help us remember how we spent the pandemic and who helped us get through it, and educate us on what we need to know as it rages on.
A Shot in the Arm by Don Brown
Published by Harry N. Abrams, 2021
Don Brown’s timely graphic history of vaccination begins with smallpox and goes up to present day Covid vaccines, with science and anti-vaxxers continuing their debate through the centuries. 144 pages; grades 3-7.
Rez Dogs by Joseph Bruchac
Published by Dial Books, 2021
When Covid hits, Malian’s visit to her grandparents’ home on the Wabanaki reservation gets unexpectedly extended. Although she loves her grandparents and the reservation, she also feels bored, lonely, and frustrated by spotty WiFi. A rez dog brings joy and companionship to her spring and summer. Novel in verse. 192 pages; grades 3-7.
Keeping the City Going by Brian Floca
Published by Atheneum, 2021
Delivery people, trash collectors, medical personnel, transit workers…there were plenty of workers who kept the city going while the rest of us stayed home. A group of neighbors has a daily–and noisy–celebration of these folks. 40 pages; ages 4-8.
When the World Turned Upside Down by K. Ibura
Published by Scholastic, 2022
Four kids living in the same apartment building deal with the Covid-19 shutdown and Black Lives Matter protests in the spring of 2020. 288 pages; grades 4-7.
Dr. Fauci: How a Boy from Brooklyn Became America’s Doctor by Kate Messner, illustrated by Alexandra Bye
Published by Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2021
How Anthony Fauci grew up from a boy in Brooklyn to become the CDC leader who studied AIDS, West Nile virus, and, of course, Covid-19. 48 pages; grades K-3.
Outside, Inside by LeUyen Pham
Published by Roaring Brook Press, 2021
“Something strange happened on an unremarkable day just before the season changed. Everybody who was outside…went inside.” This picture book reminds us how we spent the spring of 2020. 48 pages; ages 3-8.
A Pandemic is Worldwide by Sarah L. Thomson, illustrated by Taia Morley
Published by HarperCollins, 2022
A straightforward look at what a pandemic is, with a brief history of past pandemics and an introduction to Covid 19. 40 pages; ages 4-8.
There Is a Rainbow by Theresa Trinder, illustrated by Grant Snider
Published by Chronicle Books, 2021
Inspired by rainbows her children drew at the beginning of the pandemic, the author takes a hopeful look at how life will eventually return to “normal” after Covid. 52 pages; ages 3-8.
The Longest Storm by Dan Yaccarino
Published by mineditionUS
A family is forced to spend a lot of time indoors when a big storm rages. While Covid is never mentioned, the effects of lockdown on family dynamics will be familiar to many. 40 pages; ages 4-8.