Celebrating World Solitude Day

This article was written by Publisher Spotlight intern Joslin Boals

“Solitude: the situation of being alone, often by choice”

Happy Solitude Day to all of those who celebrate! As defined by Cambridge Dictionary, solitude is the state of being alone, most likely by choice. Although some may view this as a lonely or sad thing, I happen to think it’s wonderful; getting the privilege to enjoy your own company is something that we often take for granted. As an introvert, I believe that solitude is one of the most wonderful things that humans can experience. Case in point, what better way to spend a day than curled up on the couch with a good book, perhaps even about characters who enjoy their alone time? If you’re looking for picture books like that, then you have come to the right place! This March 26 is World Solitude Day so come along and find your own space with these books!

The Ugly Place book cover

Let’s start off strong with one of my personal favorites, The Ugly Place from Inhabit Media. Oftentimes for children and adults alike, emotions can be really big and scary to handle. Whenever this happens, the child in this picture book goes to their ugly place. The place is only reachable whenever their emotions are ugly, whether that be sadness, anger, envy, or any other handful of heavy feelings. Everything seems ugly when the child doesn’t feel good, from the weather to the mud to the fish. Whenever they finally reach the ugly place, they are able to sit down, listen to the sea, and take some deep breaths. After that, everything feels right again! They are able to smile and feel the sunshine and enjoy the beauty of nature. Author Laura Deal and illustrator Emma Pederson cast readers a great reminder that sometimes, whenever we feel our worst, we just need to sit and take some deep breaths to get back to ourselves again.

Next, Snail Trail from Cicada Books follows the trail of a snail who just wants some peace and quiet! Whenever everything feels a bit too big to Marjorie, she wants to crawl away to her own place of solitude. However, everybody keeps finding her! They come to her asking for her help or her company and many more things. Eventually, she blows up on one of her friends because she just wants to be left alone! She doesn’t even know how they found her! Discovering that her own trail led her friends and family to her, she learns to tell her mom whenever she needs to be alone, taking a leaf with her to brush away the trail she’s left behind. The story by Ziggy Hanaor and beautiful watercolor illustrations by Christos Kourtoglou reminds readers to be gentle with themselves and others whenever they’re feeling overwhelmed. Those around you can even help you learn how to find your place of solitude.

Snail Trail cover

Lastly, a mole misses her quiet treehouse when all of her friends come to visit in Mole’s Quiet Place from Tiger Tales. Mole and Beaver begin to invite more and more friends over to their treehouse every night to look at the stars with them. They have so much fun and laughter together! After a while, though, Mole begins to miss the quiet nights she and Beaver had together, just the two of them. One night, it all gets to be too much, and Mole goes to visit the lake for some quiet time. After learning what troubled her, Beaver and all of their friends create Mole a canoe so she can have solitude on the lake when she needs it. She feels so lucky and grateful to have friends who understand and respect her needs. Reading this picture book by Jane Chapman gave me a gentle reminder to communicate with my friends and family whenever I need to be alone, and it shows the same to readers of all age groups.

Mole's Quiet Place cover

I hope you are able to have a restful, peaceful, quiet solitude day, if you so wish! Make sure to take the time to take care of yourself today in whatever form that takes.

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