Favorite Kids Picture Books

26 August 2015

I would classify these as family favorites for the 2-4 and 30 year old crowd.

Lucy June's favorite book is this one (she's original), and Jake's favorite is this one, and B. J. Novak's book had him practically hyperventilating. I'm pretty partial to this one, but the books that made this list are ones that ALL of us love.

This means that the kids like them genuinely, request them incessantly, recite them spontaneously, and they're not too long. I can't really handle long picture books. I really like reading out of chapter books with Jake, but there's something about the long (I'm looking at you Cars and Trucks) picture book that makes me tired. With these books you won't even have to sneak skip pages!

So now that I've set the bar adequately high: here are some of our favorite picture books. You've certainly heard of some of them, but I confess these were all new to me since having kids.

Little Owl Lost 
by Chris Haughton
The illustrations in this lean toward Microsoft Paint, and the colors are a little bit much, but I LOVE THIS BOOK. The kids get so into it. The fact that they care so much that this little owl finds its mother makes me feel pretty validated. And it's SHORT. We're talking like a sixty second commitment.

We Were Tired of Living in a House 
by Liesel Moak Skorpen
This is my favorite book on the list. These siblings take off into the wilderness and have these little adventures. It's pretty poetic ("So we packed our bag with sweaters and socks and scarves and scarlet leaves and gold and a frog who was a particular friend" - stuff like that.) In my mind it's childhood perfected.

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie 
by Laura Joffe Numeroff
This one seems to make every favorite picture book list out there but for good good reason. The little kid pandering to every crazy whim of a mouse who nap-strikes. Every time I read this book I feel kind of triumphant. I'm like: "There is justice in the world because someday you will end your day in a puddle of exhaustion with cheerios in your hair too, little person!"

Frog and Toad 
by Arnold Lobel
Apparently the Frog and Toad books are kids readers that I should've been introduced to in second grade or something, but I missed them. They don't quite hold my heart like some of the books on this list, but I do really like the collection and so do my kiddos - even the not quite two year old. I like how ambiguously moral they are. I also like that it adjusts the kids to books that LOOK more like chapter books, but each story goes really quick.

We're Going on a Bear Hunt 
by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury
Again. Most people know it. But such a great one. I love the rhythm of the book that the kids can latch onto so quickly. The dad and the baby in the book are delightful. And the whole time I'm reading it, I'm thinking about the mom sipping tea in her quiet quiet house.

Leave me some recommendations! I'm always on the lookout for good kids books. I'm way pickier than I ever imagined I would be!

Linking up with Jenna!


  1. Two favorites from the library that we loved enough to purchase: Tap The Magic Tree and Yes Let's (about a family of six going for a hike). Claire also thinks B.J. Novak's book is the height of comedy.

  2. Love Frog & Toad! They were my favorites growing up. My son doesn't really appreciate them yet, but I'm working on it. If you don't mind a lot of nonsense, Jamberry is the current favorite at our house. It's quick and the illustrations are great. It basically makes no sense though. Which is ok for mindless reading ;)

  3. I'm always on the lookout for new book recommendations, so thank you! Prior to kids, I thought all kids books were the same (HAHAHA) but now I know that all kids books must pass the "Am I willing to read this 20 times each day for a week?" Dr. Seuss usually passes this test (and anything with rhythm), so does Give a Mouse a Cookie. I am definitely checking out "we were tired of living in a house" Thanks!

  4. Wyatt loves Dragons Love Tacos. We discovered the illustrator at a craft fair in Brooklyn when we visited a couple years back. Its taught him some funny phrases like "Hank has the tummy troubles."

  5. My boys LOVED Mike Milligan and his Steam Shovel. We went through two copies in our house. Brown Bear, Brown Bear was a perennial favorite. My toddlers loved anything by Sandra Boynton, but our faves were The Going to Bed Book, But Not the Hippopotamus and Opposites. We also loved anything by Kevin Henkes, especially Chrysanthemum and anything about Lily. Oh, and all Henry and Mudge books by Cynthia Rylant. Can you tell we love to read?!

  6. Filing these away for Christmas!! Have you read "The Little Blue Truck"? It's my fave. :)


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