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Nominate Your Essential Books for Your Child’s Library – Giveaway!

Nominate Your Essential Books for Your Child’s Library – Giveaway!

Happy New Year everyone!

January 27 is Family Literacy Day. To celebrate, I’ll be publishing our readers’ top 100 picks for your family’s library. These are the books that you definitely can’t live without and that you and your kids reach for time-and-time again. I’m not talking the books that you groan each time your kids ask you to read them – I want the books that everyone in your family enjoys whenever they’re pulled out.

We’ll be giving away a $20 gift card to Chapters / Indigo to a reader. To enter, simply comment below. Your comment must include your top five picks, the age of the child you think would enjoy each book, as well as a quick blurb explaining why you’re recommending each book.

Here are some of my faves to kick off the list (in no particular order):

  • Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina: Both my two-year-old and four-year-old love the monkeys in this story.
  • Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr.: Terrific rhythms and wonderful illustration. My toddler loves this book.
  • Up Up Down by Robert Munsch. My toddler loves saying the words and finds the story hilarious. Every family needs a collection of Robert Munsch stories.
  • Pet Show by Jack Ezra Keats: Wonderful illustrations. Great alternative to Snowy Day, although a compilation of Keats’ is needed on every child’s shelf.
  • Brown Bear Brown Bear by Eric Carle: Required reading for all babies and toddlers.
  • My Friends by Taro Gomi: Perfect for toddlers. Sweet illustrations.
  • Bad Case of the Stripes by David Shannon: My four-year-old loves this funny story.
  • The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson: Both of my kids enjoy this story although the mouse’s antics are a bit over my kids’ heads.
  • Fancy Nancy by Jane O’connor and Robin Preiss Glasser: Any pre-schooler who loves princesses, fairies and other fancy things will adore any book from this series.
  • Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown. A bedtime staple when my kids were younger.

Looking forward to your recommendations! The best will be compiled in a final list to be published at the end of January.

View Comments (8)
  • We have loads of books on our selves but for one reason or another, these five are the most loved… (in no particular order)

    Don’t let the Pigeon stay up Late – Mo Willems (both my 3 and 4 year olds love this – it’s interactive, simple and cute)

    What are you so grumpy about – Tom Lichtenheld (my four year old gets this book himself when he’s in trouble or upset and recites it word for word – always ends in a laugh)

    Don’t Bump the Glump – Shel Silverstein (book of short poems we’ve been reading this to our boys for a couple of years now – verbage is over their heads but they still love it – good for all ages including parents)

    The Things you can Think – Dr Seuss (good for all ages and one of my personal favs from the brilliant Seuss library)

    The Incredible Book Eating Boy – Oliver Jeffers
    (Love this and Jeffers’ Lost and Found as well) Illustrations are brilliant and the stories are cute and clever. Although it could be enjoyed at any age, I’d say 4-7 year olds would enjoy it most.

  • When I found out I was pregnant I automatically started looking for all Beatrix Potter books, and “Guess How Much I love you” by Sam McBratney illustrated by Anita Jeram. Beatrix Potter is just an amazing author, beautiful art, and great stories. Classics. With “Guess How Much I love You” well, need I say more. The bunnies are telling eachother how much they love one another, so cute, sweet and well, aren’t we always telling our childern how much we love them?

    Another good set is “My Nature Library: A flower story, a bird story, a story of pond life, an animal story and Nature Rhymes and verses” they are put out by Readers Digest for Mothercare. We love the colours and illustrations, and most facts are actually correct.

    Finally we also like “The Hat” by Jan Brett. Again great story and beautiful illustrations.

  • My fave has to be The Lorax by Dr. Seuss. No matter what age, everybody can share and ponder over the wonderful message in that book, which was so far ahead of its time. I started reading it to my kids when they were still drinking from sippy cups and am still reading it with them while they play with their iPods. A timeless classic:
    “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

  • Oh, this if fun. We (my 2 year old daughter and I) love some of your faves like My Friends my Taro Gomi – awesome and Brown Bear I recite it my sleep!

    We also love, love, love….
    Pretty much anything by Sandra Boyton, she’s hilarious and the rhyming of her stories is fun.
    ‘The Going to Bed Book’, ‘Moo, Baa, La, La, La’ and ‘Hippos Go Beserk’ are tops!

    Olivia by Ian Falconer is a recent fave. I think I love it as much as my daughter because I can totally relate to it. LOL!

    What book list would be complete without the sing song loveliness of ‘Wheels on the Bus’, ‘Baby Beluga’ and ‘Twinkle, Twinkle’ by my man Raffi.

  • Our favourites:

    In the Night Kitchen (Sedak), Oh the Places You’ll Go (Seuss), The Going to Bed Book (Boyton), Stargirl (Spinelli – it’s a teen/chapter book that we’ve read through a bit at a time), and right now, any of the Scholoastic Fairies’ series books.

    What a great contest to promote Family Literacy Day! Thank you.

  • Our top five would include:

    Good Families Don’t by Robert Munsch is a current hit – 4-6 year olds – I find that most of Robert Munsch’s books are very engaging.

    The Monster at the End of This Book – Jon Stone – 2 to 4 year olds – The little ones love the anticipation and adore Sesame Street at that age.

    Don’t let the Pigeon Drive the Bus – Mo Willems – 3 to 4 year olds – The kids love the characters.

    Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle – preschool kids – Fun, bright and colourful and helps them learn by repetition.

    Duck at the Door by Jackie Urbanovic – 4 to 6 year olds – Has lovely pictures and an interesting story line.


  • My kids are pre-teen, but still like to share their books with everyone.

    A few of my daughters faves:

    Ruby Key by Holly Lisl- Great fantasy story. She’s currently reading the sequel called The Silver Door.

    The Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer – She loves the mystery and romance of them. New Moon was her fave of the series.

    My son loves graphic novels and will literally read them from cover to cover with no grumbling. His faves are:

    Diary of a Wimpy Kid Series – Jeff Kinney

    Bone Series – Jeff Smith

    Captain Underpants – Dav Pilkey

    We all also love The Encyclopedia of Immaturity by Klutz. Who wouldn’t? 😉

  • Goodnightmoon – Margaret Wise Brown (wee baby up to 4 or 5) the cadence of this little board book is mesmerizing. Both my boys know it well, and even without great language ability yet, my two year old knows most of the words and can’t put it down. My four year old never misses a storytelling of it, either.

    Goodnight Me Andrew Daddo (18 mos + my four year old love it)
    A wonderful story of a little orangutan who says goodnight to all his body as he falls asleep. Just beautiful pictures and a really sweet story with beautiful writing

    Velveteen Rabbit – Margery Williams Bianco (and I particularly like the one illustrated by Robyn Officer) 3years old+ . Because the love of a child can make anything real. The velveteen rabbit was a gift, not fancy or flashy, and over time became beloved to the point a little boys love made me real This is my personal favourite children’s book of all.

    A Mama for Owen – Marion Dane Bower. 3-4 years old The story of a baby hippo swept down the river to the ocean after the 2004 tsunami. He finds a very old giant tortoise, Mzee, whom he decides is just like his mama. A wonderful loving and based on a true story. This edition has beautiful soft illustrations I preferred it’s softness and gentle pictures to the longer photographic and more detailed stories.

    Any Scaredy Squirrel book by Melanie Watt. 3 years +. Scaredy Squirrel is the funniest little furry guy. He’s afraid of everything! Bees, germs, sharks, disasters, you name it, he’s afraid and he NEVER leaves his home. Until he falls out one day – without his emergency pack. This series is so cute, simple pictures, funny stories and there is even an edition with a soft sculpture Scaredy Squirrel puppet. Just loved in our home.

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