Well, I’ve timed this rather badly – I was off sick all last week with a nasty cold and wouldn’t you know it, I got better and came back to work just as my next blog is due. Doh!

So guess what the theme’s going to be this week?

I’m sick!

Yes, we’ve all been there: the blocked sinuses and runny, red noses; the hacking coughs and sore, swollen throats; and if you’re really lucky, the combo of sweaty fever and chilled bones. Oh, what fun! And best of all, if you manage to catch a cold, will you get any sympathy? No –  you’ll get the blame for it: “you wouldn’t have gotten that nasty cold if you’d worn that Canadian goose down, Arctic expedition snow coat … like I told you to!”

Well, if you’ve caught a cough or a sniffle, here are some stories to read over some hot chicken soup, to help you get through it:

Bear feels sick / Karma Wilson ; illustrations by Jane Chapman.

When Bear is too sick to play, his animal friends go to his cave to make him soup and tea and keep him company.




Chick’s sick / words by Kyle Mewburn ; pictures by Ali Teo & John O’Reilly.

A crack-up companion to the popular Ducks Stuck! Sun sets. Time to rest. Into hen house. Sit on nest. Another hilarious tale from an award-winning team, this sequel to Ducks Stuck features a sneaky snake who comes along to help the farm animals solve the problem of why Chick cant lay an egg with surprising results. The Chick who thinks hes sick turns out to be … [no spoilers! – Ed.]




The crocodile under the bed / Judith Kerr.

Once there was a little boy called Matty, and he was very sad. From the creator of the iconic picture books The Tiger Who Came to Tea and Mog the Forgetful Cat, comes a brand new story about joy, parties, and crocodiles! Matty is sick, and very sad because he’s too sick to go to the Queen’s birthday party! But when he gets an unexpected visitor, it seems that Matty might not miss out after all.




If your child’s ailment is a bit more serious than just the sniffles you may be having to take them to see the doctor, your child health nurse or even take a trip to the hospital. As always, if this is going to be a new experience for them and you are worried about any anxiety and tears, why not broach the subject with a story. That way they can gain some familiarity with what they might be going to experience beforehand, in the safe and caring environment of home.

Nurse Nibbles and her get well friends / Kes Gray & Mary McQuillan.

Oh dear! Hamish the Hamster got his whiskers caught up in his wheel. Dipak the Dalmatian’s spots came out in stripes. Paul the Python’s tail is in a knot and Connie the Crocodile broke her tooth biting a rhino’s bottom! But don’t worry, with a bit of tender loving care from Nurse Nibbles, they’ll soon feel better.



Doctor Maisy / Lucy Cousins.

In DOCTOR MAISY, Maisy and Tallulah play hospital. Poor Panda is sick, but feels much better with Doctor Maisy in charge. When it’s Maisy’s turn to need help, Nurse Tallulah comes to the rescue! Another title in the ever popular Maisy mouse & friends series of stories.




Hospital / illustrated by Jess Stockham.

How long will I be there? Will I stay the night? Who will look after me? Reading Hospital with your child is the perfect opportunity to talk about these questions, and many more! Young children’s lives are full of new experiences and these books help make them less scary. Use these books as a starting point to talk to your child and help them to understand and prepare for these events, and to share any worries they may have.


You may also, as a parent, be feeling anxious and even a bit powerless when your child gets sick. To get some advice and a guiding hand, try a book from the Family & Parenting section in our Adult Non-Fiction collection. For example:

When your child is sick : what you can do to help / Alf Nicholson and Gráinne O’Malley.

Parents can do more to help if they have reliable information at hand. Alf Nicholson knows, from over 20 years’ experience of working with children, that most ailments are minor and can often be treated at home. When Your Child is Sick catalogues the top 20 ailments your child will face as he/she grows. This handy reference book will help you identify what’s wrong, how to treat the illness at home and how to know when you need to call a doctor. One of the most common questions Alf is asked by parents is, ‘Is this normal?’ To answer those questions there is a chapter on the normal stages of development. There are also sections that focus on the ‘new illnesses’ of childhood that can often be controversial: obesity, asthma, allergies and ADHD. This new and revised edition contains extra information on adolescent health and mental health.


And let’s not forget to end on a rhyme. Here’s the perfect rhyme to sing when someone in the family is not well, even ted!