If you’ve got kids at home looking for a way to pass time during their quarantined summer vacation, Laura Bush would like to help.
The former first lady released her 2020 summer reading list for young readers this week, with books by Jeff Kinney, Jerry Craft, and Jacqueline Woodson all making appearances.
“Now, more than ever, it is important to keep children engaged in reading,” wrote Bush, a former teacher and librarian. “This summer reading list includes picks for the youngest readers through middle schoolers—with topics ranging from race and kindness, to staying true to yourself, to the special bond of sisterhood—ensuring all readers are kept entertained throughout the summer and into the school year.”
Jeff Kinney’s Wrecking Ball, the latest installment in his Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, made Bush’s list of books for elementary school readers, along with Duncan Tonatiuh’s Separate Is Never Equal and Peter Brown’s The Wild Robot.
For middle school students, Bush recommended Jerry Craft’s Kirkus Prize–winning graphic novel, New Kid; Jacqueline Woodson’s National Book Award–winning Brown Girl Dreaming; and Thanhha Lai’s Inside Out Back Again, among other titles.
And among the seven books Bush recommended for youngest readers are Matthew A. Cherry’s Hair Love, Alexandra Penfold’s All Are Welcome, and—unsurprisingly—Sisters First, a children’s book written by her own daughters, Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Pierce Bush.
Michael Schaub is a Texas-based journalist and regular contributor to NPR.