LilSugar

Read All About It! Our 50 All-Time Favorite Children's Books

Sep 6 2014 - 5:54am

If there's one thing that we can't get enough of around here, it's books for our kids. Reading is something that resonates with us as editors, as parents, and as the kids we once were ourselves. When it came time to cultivate a list of the all-time best children's books, we polled our co-workers to ensure a list that's comprehensive, including everything from old classics to newfound favorites.

Did your family's most beloved books make our list?

Albert's Impossible Toothache

"A children's book with such an amazing sense of humor, I still remember it today." — Susannah Chen, editor, POPSUGAR Food

Appropriate For Ages: 4-8

Click to Buy: Albert's Impossible Toothache [1] ($3)

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

"I think we could all use this one when we're not having the best of days." — Susannah Chen

"A must have for every child's bookshelf, we pull this book out whenever we're having a less-than-stellar day, because compared to Alexander, our day isn't that bad!" — Rebecca Gruber, editor, POPSUGAR Moms

Appropriate For Ages: 6+

Click to Buy: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day [2] ($8)

Are You My Mother?

A classic and, for many kids, a great book for learning how to read, this tells the story of a baby bird who falls from his nest and sets out in search of his mother.

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: Are You My Mother? [3] ($5)

The Story of Babar

This first book in the Babar [4] series tells the story of how the most beloved elephant in children's literature (for the past 80 years!) came to be. Translated from Jean de Brunhoff's original French version, The Story of Babar stands the tests of language and time.

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: The Story of Babar [5] ($16)

Barnyard Dance!

The lively rhyming text, vibrant illustrations, and fun nature of Barnyard Dance! make it a great first addition to a new baby's library. Later they'll learn to get in on the fun themselves.

Appropriate For Ages: 1-4

Click to Buy: Barnyard Dance! [6] ($7)

Bread and Jam For Frances

The sweet badger named Frances has been charming readers for 30-plus years. Will she ever get over her love for bread and jam and expand her horizons to a more varied menu?

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: Bread and Jam For Frances [7] ($4)

Charlotte's Web

Touching on everything from friendship to the anticipation of the changing seasons to the miracles of life and death, Charlotte's Web has been a reader favorite since E.B. White first wrote it in 1952.

Appropriate For Ages: 8+

Click to Buy: Charlotte's Web [8] ($8)

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

"The jazz-like rhythm of this alphabet tale always puts a smile on my face. I swear my kids learned their letters through repetitive reading of this one book!" — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom [9] ($8)

Corduroy

The endearing story of a teddy bear named Corduroy's overnight adventures while being locked in a department store has withstood the test of time since 1976.

Appropriate For Ages: 3-8

Click to Buy: Corduroy [10] ($7)

Dear Zoo

"Our favorite lift-the-flap book! It's silly fun that we can read over and over again!" — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 1+

Click to Buy: Dear Zoo [11] ($7)

Doctor De Soto

"The tale of a mouse who outwits a hungry fox, this story is a favorite in our home, and one that we come back to time and time again." — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: Doctor De Soto [12] ($8)

Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!

"Mo Willems may just be one of the greatest children's writers of our tots' generation. His Pigeon series is hysterical — my toddler literally rolls on the floor with laughter when we read one of these (they're definitely not bedtime reading stories in our home; everyone gets too riled up!) — and my older one loves reading them by himself! The iPad app is fabulous too!" — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! [13] ($16)

Duck in the Truck

Tots will love the percussive rhythm of this sweet tale of animal teamwork.

Appropriate For Ages: 3-6

Click to Buy: Duck in the Truck [14] ($4)

Everyone Poops

A book that needs no introduction . . .

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: Everyone Poops [15] ($18)

The Story of Ferdinand

"Ferdinand is my all-time favorite children's book. In fact, I still own it. It's the sweetest little book about a bull who refuses to fight — he just wants to smell the flowers. My grandparents gave it to me when I was little." — Christina Pérez, editor, POPSUGAR Fashion

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: The Story of Ferdinand [16] ($4)

The Frog and Toad Treasury

"As a kid, I loved these books and checked them out of the library as often as possible. Now that my oldest is reading, I see what a great learning tool they are — fun, sweet stories that help encourage early readers." — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 5+

Click to Buy: The Frog and Toad Treasury [17] ($2)

The Giving Tree

"My copy is prominently displayed on my bookshelf, and I don't have kids!" — Meg Cuna, style director

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: The Giving Tree [18] ($17)

Go Away, Big Green Monster!

"Die-cut books are always fun, but the fact that kids can tear away the scary features of a monster piece by piece makes this an especially good choice for toddlers." — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: Go Away, Big Green Monster! [19] ($13)

Goodnight Moon

As our editorial board's most beloved book, Goodnight Moon is proof that some classics never go out of style.

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: Goodnight Moon [20] ($18)

Green Eggs and Ham

"My favorite book growing up. I'd have my father read it to me over and over and over again. They even would try and hide the book from me, but I'd always find it." — Maria Del Russo, editorial assistant, POPSUGAR Beauty

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: Green Eggs and Ham [21] ($9)

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

"JK Rowling's world-building is incredible — you can almost imagine yourself learning how to levitate items or drinking butter beer." — Emily Co, editor, POPSUGAR Smart Living

Appropriate For Ages: 9+

Click to Buy: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone [22] ($25)

If You Give a Moose a Muffin

"Not only is this book hilarious, but it teaches valuable life lessons about the consequences of your actions. Sometimes I quote it in regular conversation but no one knows what I'm talking about. Clearly, more people need to read it." — Maggie Pehanick, assistant editor, POPSUGAR Entertainment

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: If You Give a Moose a Muffin [23] ($17)

James and the Giant Peach

"My older son and I are reading this book together now. I had forgotten just how wonderful Roald Dahl's writing was! We're both loving the fantasy tale." — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 6+

Click to Buy: James and the Giant Peach [24] ($7)

Knuffle Bunny

A Caldecott-winning "cautionary tale" of how a simple errand can turn terribly wrong, by the beloved Mo Willems.

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: Knuffle Bunny [25] ($17)

Moo, Baa, La La La!

"My favorite author of books for infants and toddlers, Sandra Boynton plays with the traditional animal sounds books by throwing in a few curveballs that will have tots cracking up — it's also a book whose iPad app is a sheer delight!" — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 0+

Click to Buy: Moo, Baa, La La La! [26] ($6)

On the Night You Were Born

"This is one of my favorite books to read to my little boy, as it celebrates just how special and truly one-of-a-kind each child is. A must have for every nursery's bookshelf!" — Lisa Horten, associate editor, POPSUGAR Moms

Appropriate For Ages: 0+

Click to Buy: On the Night You Were Born [27] ($8)

Oh, the Places You'll Go!

There's a reason that this book shows up at graduations from pre-K through college. It's whimsical, inspirational, and makes the reader feel like she can conquer the world.

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: Oh, the Places You'll Go! [28] ($18)

Owl Babies

This beautifully illustrated tome reminds little ones that they can always rely on their mama.

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: Owl Babies [29] ($7)

Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes

Pete the Cat's white shoes serve as a metaphor for staying positive during rough times (even if your new shoes get dirty!).

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes [30] ($17)

Press Here

Don't judge a book's level of fun by its cover! While Press Here may appear simple from the outside, there's a world of interactive fun within its pages.

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: Press Here [31] ($16)

The Rainbow Fish

"This is a precursor to Finding Nemo (and a much better one, if you ask me), and I was mesmerized by the fish's rainbow scales. He's different, and it's fantastic!" — Maggie Pehanick

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: The Rainbow Fish [32] ($10)

Snuggle Puppy!

A sweet love song from a parent to child, Snuggle Puppy! is sure to become a bedtime favorite for your baby or toddler.

Appropriate For Ages: 0+

Click to Buy: Snuggle Puppy! [33] ($7)

Strega Nona

The very funny and charmingly illustrated adaptation of an old tale, Strega Nona is likely to have been a favorite of this generations's parents when they were small.

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: Strega Nona [34] ($8)

Stuart Little

In the beloved tale of an adventure-loving mouse, Stuart Little ventures off on the greatest journey of his life in search of his best friend, a bird named Margalo, who has gone missing.

Appropriate For Ages: 8+

Click to Buy: Stuart Little [35] ($6)

The Twenty-One Balloons

"As a child, I found this book one of the great fantasy escapes of all time. As a parent reading it to my kids, we both felt it." — David Grant, president, POPSUGAR Studios and POPSUGAR TV 

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: The Twenty-One Balloons [36] ($7)

Belly Button Book!

The rhyming text and adorable illustrations in this board book will have parents and their little ones alike giggling through each page.

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: Belly Button Book! [37] ($7)

The Cricket in Times Square

This Newbery Honor story of friendship will resonate with city kids and country kids alike.

Appropriate For Ages: 8+

Click to Buy: The Cricket in Times Square [38] ($7)

The Gruffalo

Speaking to the power of imagination, "the gruffalo is a creature with terrible claws, and terrible tusks in its terrible jaws . . . but Mouse has no worry to show. After all, there's no such thing as a gruffalo!"

Appropriate For Ages: 5+

Click to Buy: The Gruffalo [39] ($7)

The Napping House

"A beautifully illustrated book about a home full of sleepy family members and pets who all end up napping in the same cozy bed — I still think about it when the afternoon starts to get dark and rainy and naptime approaches." — Maggie Pehanick

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: The Napping House [40] ($7)

The Velveteen Rabbit

Originally published in 1922, The Velveteen Rabbit tells the charming tale of how a stuffed toy rabbit is brought to life through the love of his boy.

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: The Velveteen Rabbit [41] ($4)

The Red Balloon

"No words, just feelings!" — Maggie Pehanick

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: The Red Balloon [42] ($12)

The Mitten

The perfect Winter reading book, The Mitten is author Jan Brett's sweet interpretation of a Ukrainian tall tale.

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: The Mitten [43] ($8)

The Runaway Bunny

"A favorite from my own childhood that would always surface in the springtime, this testament of a mother's unconditional love is one that will resonate with moms and kids alike." — Lisa Horten

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: The Runaway Bunny [44] ($7)

My Truck Is Stuck!

"My boys love the rhythmic nature of this one!" — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 2+

Click to Buy: My Truck Is Stuck! [45] ($17)

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

"Watch as the caterpillar literally eats his way through the pages of this beautifully illustrated Eric Carle [46] classic." — Lisa Horten

Appropriate For Ages: 1+

Click to Buy: The Very Hungry Caterpillar [47] ($11)

Where the Sidewalk Ends

"I wore through my copy of Shel Silverstein's book of silly poems when I was a child, and my kids are laughing their way through it now too!" — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: Where the Sidewalk Ends [48] ($20)

Where the Wild Things Are

"So imaginative and wonderful. Every child needs to be exposed to this book." — Maggie Pehanick

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: Where the Wild Things Are [49] ($9)

Big Book of the Berenstain Bears

This collection includes some of the favorite stories from the most beloved family of bears in children's literature.

Appropriate For Ages: 3+

Click to Buy: Big Book of the Berenstain Bears [50] ($11)

The Lorax

"Yes, it is a story about the environment, but in typical Dr. Seuss form, it is written so well that the kids don't even realize it!" — Rebecca Gruber

Appropriate For Ages: 4+

Click to Buy: The Lorax [51] ($15)

The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales

This Caldecott Honor-winning collection includes spoofs on classic fairy tales like "Cinderumpelstiltskin," "The Tortoise and the Hair," and "Jack's Bean Problem" and is sure to have those old enough to know the originals laughing from beginning to end.

Appropriate For Ages: 5+

Click to Buy: The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales [52] ($18)


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