My daughter Audrey loves reading books and I am always on the lookout for a new and exciting adventure for us to read about. To compile a great list, I asked my friends to tell me what their child’s favorite book was, as well as a favorite memory and how they got the book (whether it was a book from the parents’ childhood, a gift, etc.).
Kid recommended reading
Each Peach Pear Plum written by Janet and Allan Ahlberg is an eye-catching book that plays off the classic ‘I spy’ books. By introducing favorite fairy-tale characters, the book asks the reader to find the hidden objects from the poems. It’s a great introduction into the world of rhyming and increases their visual perceptual skills (aka they will be able to find BOTH socks after they have been washed).
My friend Aly Nickerson says that this is her favorite book to read to her older son because it brings up memories of when her mom read it to her. She even reads the same copy her mom read to her when she was a child, allowing it to be even more special for her son.
Don’t Push the Button is also a fan favorite among my mom friends. Written by Bill Cotter, this book allows the child to interact with the story and use their imagination. Haven’t you always wondered what would happen if you pushed the button that everyone tells you not to? Well, this book finally allows your inner child to go against the grain and push the button. Let your child be the leader in this story, break the rules, and allow them to find the fix to all the problems the Button brings. Watching your child’s imagination soar, even after having read the book a few times (oh who are we kidding, a million times) is always a magical and inspiring time.
Please, Mr. Panda written by Steve Antony delves into the world of manners and donuts (two things one should always have in their back pocket). It teaches kids the right way to ask for something while bringing in humor, fun artwork, and a cute panda. Candace King’s daughter loves “acting” this story out with her mom because she gets to play the panda and decide who among the other animals (brought to you by Mommy) gets to have one of the yummy donuts. Having never read this book before, it caught her eye at a free reading event with its colorful pages and important lessons. Get this book and begin to teach your child manners in a fun a creative way.
Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney brings bedtime routines to life. The story follows baby llama on the rollercoaster of emotions that children go through after mama turns off the light and how only mamas can set things right. This book was brought to my friend’s attention when she came across a video of Ludacris rapping this book to a beat. Brittany writes, “My daughter will only let me read this book in rap form now. She even does it and keeps a beat too!” The sweet illustrations and all too real scenarios make this book a must have for a nightly reading!
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown is a classic storybook that has lulled kids to sleep for decades. This book takes the reader through a room with a little bunny saying goodnight to all the items he holds dear. It’s a reminder of the simple mind a child has and how even the most mundane items can be special. My dear friend Brittany says, “Reading this book as a child, and now reading it to my children, has allowed me to bring my childhood to them and takes me back to great memories spent with my dad reading.” Bring a bit of the past to your reading routine with this time-honored book.
I Love You, Stinky Face is one of Audrey’s favorite books that she got for Christmas one year (and secretly mine too because I get such a kick out of calling her stinky face). Written by Lisa Mccourt, this silly story takes a young boy on a journey of all the ways his mother will love him. I think one reason why Audrey loves this book so much is that it allows me to be creative by using different voices. She loves reading this book at bedtime and always finds it frightfully funny when I call her stinky face. I also find that it has such a positive message in the fact that no matter what, I will always love you.
Hoots & Toots & Hairy Brutes written by Larry Schles is a story that uses dramatic artwork to tell children that it’s okay to be different. It’s about a cute little owl named Squib who doesn’t sound quite like the other owls, but learns that it is okay to be unique, and that one’s individuality can make all the difference in the world. This is a story that my brothers and I remember fondly as I believe it helped to reaffirm what our parents had been teaching, that being true to oneself and embracing it is what makes us-US! I haven’t read this book to Audrey just yet but can’t wait until the day that I do.
I know as I grew up, I accumulated such a wonderful collection of books that I look back on fondly and can’t wait to share with Audrey. I had not heard of quite a few of these books listed and am intrigued to see how Audrey responds to them. I’m excited to add to her own collection. These books have brought laughter and fun into the homes of many children and will continue to be a staple in future homes for years to come. I hope you all enjoy the list that I have put together and that you too will share some of your child’s (and yours since you are the one who has to read them over and over) favorite books.