Seattle's Child

Your guide to a kid-friendly city

book picks

Book picks: 2 tales (one for adults, one for kids) of families on journeys

A sweeping family epic, and a family's special nighttime adventure.

Book picks for kids (and adults):

Looking for some reading inspiration? Here’s a peek at what KCLS staff and the young readers in their lives are digging into this month!

All KCLS libraries are open. Plan your next visit at

Adults: The Arsonists’ City, by Hala Alyan

Award-winning author and poet Hala Alyan chronicles an intimate family portrayal in her sophomore novel. Idris, a Lebanese American heart surgeon living in California, decides that it is time to sell his family home in Beirut, despite his Syrian-born wife’s objections and his grown children’s mixed emotions. When the family returns to Lebanon to say goodbye to the house, they are flooded with memories and struggle to complete the sale. The depiction of personal choices and complicated family dynamics illuminate the complexity of the large-scale themes of war, identity and displacement in this sweeping epic.

Kids: The Night Walk, by Marie Dorléans

A small family awakens before dawn to go on a hike in the dark. The simple black line drawings on midnight blue illustrate their journey. Through the village and into the peaceful countryside they go, past sleepy cows and into a calming forest. They observe what their eyes can see in the dark until the sun begins to rise on a new day. This lovely book celebrates the nighttime, quiet of the outdoors and special family time together.

More book picks for kids (and other book news):

Favorite kids’ books of local authors and educators

Combine kids’ books and real-life adventures around Seattle

How to start your own little free library

Dad Next Door: Harry Potter will set you free (from reading tedious bedtime stories to your kids)


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About the Author

Rekha Kuver

Librarian Rekha Kuver is the youth and family services manager for the King County Library System. As a reader, she likes characters with rich internal lives and settings with a vivid sense of time and place. When she’s not reading or listening to audiobooks, she’s making art or spending time outdoors.