Seattle's Child

Your guide to a kid-friendly city

Emily’s Picks: ‘Why Do We Cry?’ a lovely exploration of feelings

Also, an adult selection that's delightful but tough to characterize.

When fellow parents ask how I find time to read with a newborn and toddler at home, I tell them I read what I love! Here’s a peek at what I’m enjoying and what my children and I are reading together, because finding books they love will help your kids read more too. Both of these titles, and many more, are available as eBooks or audiobooks in KCLS’ digital collection.

What I’m Reading: “Interior Chinatown” by Charles Yu

Yu’s audacious National Book Award winner is a surprising delight to read and a challenge to describe. Its protagonist is actor Willis Wu, child of Chinese immigrant parents, who is relegated to the role of Generic Asian Man, although he longs to someday be Kung Fu Guy. Using filmmaking as a frame, Yu (who also writes for HBO’s “Westworld”) explores the stereotypes and limitations faced by Asian Americans and creates an unlikely underdog in Wu. Experimental, thought-provoking and funny.

What We’re Reading: “Why Do We Cry?” by Fran Pintadera, Ana Sender and Mihaila Petričić

A little boy asks his mom, “Why do we cry?” at the beginning of this beautiful book. Her answers fill the pages, as she offers poetic but truthful explanations for the many reasons people cry. The colorful illustrations are brimming with metaphor, as she sits in a room filling up with tears, for example, or stands at the bottom of a wall that appears too tall to climb. A lovely exploration of feelings and their expressions. 

Find more book picks from Emily Calkins here

Don’t miss: Emily’s top 10 books of 2020, for kids and adults

About the Author

Emily Calkins

Emily Calkins is the readers' services program coordinator for the King County Library System, where she specializes in connecting readers with stories, authors and each other. She is also the co-host of the library’s podcast, The Desk Set. As a reader, she likes flawed characters, atmospheric world-building, and anything with a slow-burn romance. When she’s not reading or listening to audiobooks, she’s cooking, gardening and spending time with her family.