Happy Friday, all!
The slowdown of new normal life continues. After nearly 8 weeks, there’s only so much to keep a girl busy around the house, so my reading pace has picked up again. That means more book reviews in the queue. I know how much you all miss those! Meanwhile, with school winding down and more children at home this spring and summer, I thought this would be a good time to discuss children’s books.
If I had to narrow down my list of favorites to even 10, I’d never be able to do it. However, I do have some guidelines for choosing children’s books as well as a few books that I genuinely love as much now as my children did when they read them. I have reviewed several of the books in this post, so if you’re interested click on the link for more insight. I’m a big fan of bullet points and categorization, so here we go.
Books for Young Children
- Blueberries for Sal, by Robert McCloskey, 1948 Caldecott Award Winner. Our youngest child turned 12 this week, and one of my fondest memories of her toddler years was when I read this book to her and her sister, now 13. They requested it over and over. It wasn’t long before we had bought little metal buckets, and spent countless days dropping blueberries in them making the “kuplink!” sound and eating the blueberries.
- Make Way for Ducklings, by Robert McCloskey, 1942 Caldecott Award Winner. The story of Mr. and Mrs. Mallard and their large family of ducklings never failed to delight our kids when they were young. Like Blueberries for Sal, the Caldecott medal is an indication of the beautiful artwork in the book.
- Olivia, by Ian Falconer, 2001 Caldecott Award Winner. This quirky, confident little pig stole my girls’ heart from the first read.
- Frog and Toad, by Arnold Loebel, 1970, Caldecott Award winner. I’ve written at length about the beauty of the Frog and Toad stories. You can find that post here.
- Peter Rabbit, by Beatrix Potter, 1901. This classic tale has never gone out of style. Peter’s mischievous adventures are sure to keep kids entertained and delighted. It also makes for very good discussions about obedience and prudence.
Adventure for Older Children
- Captains Courageous, by Rudyard Kipling, 1896. The link is to my original review of this wonderful coming of age story. Kipling weaves the tale of an entitled boy growing into a man and it’s a great book.
- The Hiding Place, by Corrie ten Boom, 1971. The link is to my review. This book qualifies as an adventure, but not in the sense that we’re accustomed to thinking of adventure. This story of a family defying Nazi orders and extending Christian love during WWII is a magnificent read.
- The Lion’s Paw, by Robb White, 1946. Again, the link is to my review. This is another coming of age story, but it takes place on the high seas off the coast of Florida. If you’ve read here for any length of time, you know I read a lot of books set in and around this state I call home.
- Peter Pan, by J.M. Barrie, 1904. The link is to my review. I’d never read this book until one of my children was assigned to read it, but once I started, I could not put it down. This book is worth reading no matter how old you are really. It’s a fast-paced, rip-roaring good time from start to finish. I can’t recommend it highly enough.
- The Wind in the Willows, by Kenneth Graeme, 1908, link to review. Even now, when I think about Mr. Toad’s motorcar adventure, daring prison escape, and inability to keep his mouth shut when he most needed to, I chuckle a bit. If you haven’t read Wind in the Willows with your kids, you should.
These are just a fraction of a fraction of my favorite children’s books. I could literally go on all night, but I won’t. An excellent resource for a comprehensive book list is the book Honey for a Child’s Heart, by Gladys Hunt. It is by far the best, suggested reading list I’ve found in one place.