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Sometimes, you just need something that will make you laugh. In this crazy world, there are so many things we can stress about. And there are certainly times for serious subjects but don’t miss out on the healing power of sharing funny stories, like Sideways Stories from Wayside School, with you kids. After all, laughter is the best medicine.

We have been through these books twice (both times in audio), and they never fail to bring a laugh from me and my kids. These stories are wacky and off the wall, but they are also expertly crafted. Louis Sachar amazingly makes you believe in this sideways school where kids are turned into apples, dead rats sneak into classrooms, and everybody loves Marisha flavored ice cream.

Just to warn you, there is a fair amount of name calling and what I would call “playground humor” in these stories. However, a sense of justice prevails in each story. If you were to read these aloud, you could probably edit out any content you found objectionable to your family.

But I have to recommend the audiobooks. The author, Louis Sachar, does a brilliant job reading his stories. Even though he doesn’t do voices, his pacing and intonation bring the books to life. (Audible versions linked below).

One more thing. While doing research for this post, I found out there are puzzle book companions for the Sideways Stories series!! We’ll definitely continue the fun at our house with these: Sideways Arithmetic from Wayside School and More Sideways Arithmetic from Wayside School.

What books make your kids laugh?