Children’s Books

Our family reads a lot of books, and I mean, a lot. I swear we must be the #1 subscribers at our local library and it’s only a matter of time until our librarian surprises us with a shower of confetti and a large trophy the next time we check out books. We usually have between 30 and 40 books borrowed at all times, and we’ll renew them as long as our kids will request us to read them and the library will actually let us keep them. Unfortunately sometimes other kids want to read them too… By the way, I advocate all parents to get a library card as soon as they have a baby. This is a great time to start reading with your child, as early as one month old. The earlier you start, the more your child will love to read.

The books I list below as those that my kids have asked us to read again, and again, and again. They are a sure hit with little ones, probably age 1 to 6. As my kids grow, I’ll be extending the age range and book interest.

If you have any book favorites that are not on this list, please let me know and I’ll add them. I’m sure there are plenty of undiscovered treasures for our family to find out there!

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Mo Willems Collection:
Are you ready to play outside?
Edwina, the dinosaur who didn’t know she was extinct
Knufflebunny, a cautionary tale
Knufflebunny Too
I love my new toy
The pigeon drives the bus
The pigeon finds a hot dog
The pigeon wants a puppy
Watch me throw the ball

Judy Schachner Collection:
Skippyjon Jones
Skippyjon Jones and the big bones
Skippyjon Jones  lost in spice
Skippyjon Jones in mummy trouble
Skippyjon Jones in the doghouse

Nancy Shaw collection:
Sheep in a jeep
Sheep out to eat
Sheep in a shop
Sheep take a hike
Sheep on a ship
Sheep trick or treat
Sheep blast off
Racoon tune (great rhyming book)

Susan Meddaugh collection:
Hog eye (hilarious!)
The best place
Harry on the rocks
Martha speaks
Martha blah blah (and other Martha book series)

Richard Scarry collection:
Best counting book ever
Best word book ever
Busy, busy town
Cars, trucks and things that go
The worst helper ever

Byron Barton collection:
Bones, bones, dinosaur bones
Building a house
Machines at work

Leslie Patricelli collection (great for little ones):
Baby happy, baby sad
Big little
Higher higher
Quiet, loud
Yummy, yucky

Rosemary Wells collection:
Bunny cakes
Bunny party
Goodnight, Max
Max cleans up
Max’s bunny business
Max’s dragon shirt

Eric Carle collection:
From head to toe
Little cloud

Donal Crews collection:
Ten black dots
Freight train

Jez Alborough collection:
Duck’s key: where can it be?

Anna Dewdney collection:
Grumpy Gloria
Llama llama mad at mama
Llama llama red pyjama
Nobunny’s perfect

Laura Numeroff collection:
If you give a mouse a cookie
If you give a pig a pancake
If you take a mouse to school

Berenstain collection:
The Berebstain Bears’ new kitten
The big honey hunt
The bike lesson (very, very funny)

Potty training books:
Even firefighters go to the potty by Wendy & Naomi Wax
Peek-a-poo! What’s in your diaper? (the funniest potty training book!)

Books without words:
How are you peeling? Foods with moods by Saxton Freymann (lots of fruit and veggie photos!)
Rainstorm by Barbara Lehman
Where’s the cake by The Tjong-Khing
Where’s the cake now by The Tjong-Khing

10 minutes till bedtime Peggy Rathmann
Andrew’s angry words by Dorothea Lachner (great book about swearing and its impact)
Belly button book by Sandra Boynton
Big words for little people by Jamie Lee Curtis
Corduroy by Don Freeman
Digger man by Andrea Zimmerman & David Clemesha
Emily Brown and the thing by Cressida Cowell
Goldilocks and the three hares by Heidi Petach (way funnier than the original!)
Goodnight gorilla by Peggy Rathmann
Goodnight moon by Margaret Wise Brown
Harold and the purple crayon by Crockett Johnson
I’m not cute by Johnathan Allen
Kiss kiss by Margaret Wild (a sweet bedtime story to read with mom)
Madeline (and the original series of books) by Ludwig Bemelmans
May I please have a cookie? by J.E. Morris
No biting, Louise by Margie Palatini
One by Kathryn Otoshi (beautifully painted book on self-confidence)
That rabbit belongs to Emily Brown by Cressida Cowell
The fat cat sat on the matby Nurit Karlin
The going to bed book by Sandra Boynton
Today I feel silly and other moods that make my day by Jamie Lee Curtis
Ton by Taro Miura
Tools by Taro Miura
When I was little: a four-year old’s memoir of her youth by Jamie Lee Curtis

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17 responses to “Children’s Books

  1. Here is one book that I love to read (probably more than my son loves to hear). It has this New Orleans “accent” that makes it so funny (to me). I just love it.
    Gator Gumbo: A Spicy-Hot Tale by Candace Fleming.

  2. Where the Wild Things Are
    The Very Hungry Caterpillar
    Goodnight Moon

  3. Anything by Carolyn and Mark Buehner is really great. The illustrations are always fun and there are usually hidden pictures for the kids to find. (My kindergartners loved The Escape of Marvin the Ape and all of the Snowmen series.) Also The Napping House by Don and Audrey Wood is a classic. They’ve also done a fun Alphabet series which has wonderful illustrations, too. Happy reading! :)

  4. Can you recommend books you read before your child was 1 year old? My son is 6 months old and I want to know what is best for his age, thanks for any suggestions!

    • I did read a lot of books to my kids when they were babies. The first one spent a lot of time looking at them while the other spent more time trying to eat them… I read and then confirmed with my kids that babies vision field is small and their vision doesn’t get well developed for several months, so any book with very large pictures or images is best. Photos of baby faces (making all kinds of faces are great) and nice, bright colors work well too. Babies don’t really care about story lines, but at night, it’s nice to read them rhythmic books, like goodnight moon and others, even if they don’t look at the pictures.

      I definitely recommend the British series of books on various Baby Faces by Margaret Miller and the SAMI books are great too. The Leslie Patricelli baby board books are a lot of fun too around 9 months old. I’d try Good night gorilla by Peggy Rathmann around 12 months – a most excellent and fun book for toddlers and even two-year olds.

      When you find a type of books that your baby likes, visit your library and get books from the same series, or similar. You’ll get to go through a lot of books and you’ll get to see what your baby prefers. Then you get more books of another kind he seems to like and enjoy those again. We usually have 30 to 40 books borrowed at once to have plenty of variety available every night. You’ll soon discover what your baby likes better as he grows up. My guess is you’re in for plenty of trucks and construction books, a boy’s favorite!

  5. I just discovered the “Indestructibles” series and my 18-month-old loves the one I got. He is always wanting to “use” (read isn’t the right word) his older brother’s books so I think the paper-thin pages of these ‘Indestructibles’ appeals to him…the board books can be hard for him to look through with his little fingers. The pictures are bright and beautiful too.

  6. This is a wonderful list of books! I joined a blog hop that is busy finding books recommended by other bloggers all interested in picture books. These books can be found at Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog under Just Right Books. They all have reading resources also. Here is her url :
    If you go to her blog you will also see “Perfect Picture Books”, they are one and the same. I hope you find it useful.
    Thanks for this list though. I’ll pass it around.

    • Thank you, even though this page on my blog is VERY outdated. I really need to recreate it (probably as several pages) and sort book by age, by type, etc. Since I created the list a year ago, we’ve found wonderful books to read and they really should be on the page.

      Thanks for the link, I’ll definitely check it out as I’m always looking for new book ideas to read with my boys.

  7. As a former teacher and grandmother of nine, I like this post very much and offer the following suggestion for another book about manners. In a society full of bullying and self-centered children, it is helpful to teach your children the benefits of consideration for others and being polite as early as possible. The Magic Word is an award winning book emphasizing good manners, which can be read to toddlers. It is a rhyming story of a little girl who was rude, selfish and demanding – and had very few friends. Her mother suggested that she needed to improve her manners; so when she went to school the next day, she thought of her mother’s advice, “What is the magic word?” and she started saying “Please” and also “Thank You”. She tried to become more thoughtful of others, and discovered that she was a much happier person. The repetitive use of the phrase “What is the magic word?” has children answering “Please”!

  8. Any list that starts off with Mo Willems has got to be good. Click Clack Moo by Doreen Cronin is also really funny…

  9. What a good list! I’ve been meaning to make a list of children’s books myself. My son and I go to the library about once a week and are going through the “George and Martha” books by Larry Marshall, the “Scardey Squirrel” books by Melanie Watt, and the “Tim in Danger” books by Edward Ardizzone. The “Tim” books are bit too advanced for him as he’s just three, so I guess I’m really getting those for myself!

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