Sibling Collaborators in Writing

As I’ve been reading recently, I noticed that I finished two books that were created by sibling teams so I decided to write a quick post about these two different series.

 Babymouse: Queen of the World by: Jennifer and Matthew Holm

 The first book in the Babymouse series follows a young mouse who must deal with things at school that all children come across: finding friends, dealing with homework, and un-sticking a jammed locker, amongst other issues. Most of all Babymouse wants to be invited to the slumber party of the “queen” of the school, Felicia Furrypaws. The reader watches as Babymouse devises different ways to get herself invited to this big event.

This is a fun graphic novel that can be handled by children moving from picture books to chapter books, but will be enjoyed by older students, too, who will have a better grasp of some of the humor and see themselves in the role of Babymouse. Funny illustrations and Babymouse’s creative imagination combine for an enjoyable fantasy read for elementary school students.

To view a few videos related to the Babymouse series, check out the following blog from teacher and super reading advocate Colby Sharp.


Regarding the Fountain: A Tale, in Letters, of Liars and Leaks by: Kate and Sarah Klise

This novel is written entirely in the form of correspondence between various characters who are dealing with a middle-school’s leaking water fountain. The plot progresses quickly from this simple problem to uncovering a full-blown scandal. There is a light mystery in the book dealing with why the town’s creek went dry three decades ago, though many readers will uncover the truth long before the protagonists do. The main draw of the book is the inventive way the story is told and the humorous interactions throughout. I especially liked the headstrong Florence Waters (the character names are all derived from wordplay) who is designing the new fountain based on students’ drawings and who puts the middle-school’s principal in his place. This is an amusing read that can also be used as a great mentor text for helping younger students understand the format of a letter.

I will most likely read other books from both of these series in the future because of the light-hearted work done by these sibling teams. Do you have any other favorite sibling collaborators? I can think of other family teams (the McKissacks, the Tashjians), but no other teams of siblings. Maybe I will come across more in the future as I read across genres.

As a reminder, I am still looking for pictures of classroom libraries for a post I am putting together for September. There are already some great submissions so keep them coming. Please send all pictures of classroom libraries (and a few lines of description, if possible) to shane DOT jensen29 AT gmail DOT com by September 2nd (I have pushed back the submission date).  Thank you for taking the time to do this during the hectic start of the year.


4 responses to “Sibling Collaborators in Writing

  1. What an interesting topic for this blog. I’ve often wondered if I could write a book with my sister who writes copy for advertising. I am eagerly awaiting the pictures of classroom reading corners!

  2. I was surprised to see the picture of Baby Mouse on your blog. That is one of the books I am using for my Reluctant Reader project. I agree that it can be enjoyed by children of all ages. The younger ones feel like real readers because the pictures are so inviting and the text limited. I think this book would be a great mentor text for those older struggling readers.

    Do you still need pictures of reading corners/library areas. I didn’t get to your blog last month, but would be happy to send a picture this week if you need one. Let me know! 🙂

    • I already have a student who has been reading the Babymouse books this year. The series is also good for discussing how real issues are portrayed in fantasy books.

      Yes, I would love more pictures/explanations of reading areas! I am compiling that post this week.

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