Excellent Picture Books for Younger Children
Chosen by My Children from Our Personal Collection

The book list FOR children BY children!

The comments in quotes are from one or another of my children. If there are no quotes, the comment is my two cents! Comments in italics are short excerpts from the books.

1 is One by Tasha Tudor
("My favorite is the 'six little girls' part!")

ABC and 123 by Mary Fidelis Todd
(Initial letter sounds, numbers, and professions.... "H is for HOMEMAKER. Wonderful mother. Her 8 little children all help one another." [1955])

Aesop for Children, illustrated by Milo Winter

All in a Suitcase by Samuel French Morse, pictures by Barbara Cooney
("I like the animals for every letter of the alphabet. I especially like the made-up animals.")

All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan

Always Room for One More by Sorche Nic Leodhas

Amelia Bedelia books by Peggy Parish
("She's does stuff wrong. When she dusted the living room she put powder on it. It was dustier than ever!")

Anatole books by Eve Titus
(These are the tales of a Parisian mouse.)

Andy and the Lion by James Daugherty

Angus stories by Marjorie Flack

Apricot ABC by Miska Miles

Away Went Wolfgang by Virginia Kahl

Baby, Come Out! by Fran Manushkin

Beady Bear by Don Freeman

The Bears of Hemlock Mountain by Alice Dalgliesh
(Folk tale. "We stamp our feet and 'cut out cookies'! That's fun!")

The Big Fish by Barbara Greenough Johnson
(This is the story of a brother and six sisters in Quebec. Traditional male-female roles are strongly reinforced.)

Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey

Books by Ingri and Edgar Parin D'Aulaire, any

The Box with Red Wheels by Maud and Miska Petersham
("The box is the little baby's wagon.")

Brown Cow, Green Grass, Yellow Mellow Sun by Ellen Jackson
(This is the story of butter and includes a recipe for pancakes.)

Can't You Sleep Little Bear? by Martin Waddell

Caps for Sale, A Tale of a Peddlar, Some Monkeys and their Monkey Business by Esphyr Slobodkina

Caps, Hats, Socks and Mittens, A Book about the Four Seasons by Louise Borden
(This was our oldest daughter's first book! Her Daddy bought this for her.)

Chanticleer and the Fox, adapted from the Canterbury Tales and illustrated by Barbara Cooney

The Chicken Book by Garth Williams

A Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson, illustrated by Eulalie
(We prefer her illustrations to any others we have seen for this book.)

The Classic Tales of Beatrix Potter

The Complete Nonsense Book by Edward Lear

The Complete Stories and Poems of Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne

Corduroy by Don Freeman

The Cow Who Fell in the Canal by Phyllis Krasilovsky

Dandy Lion by Don Freeman
(...the story of a vain lion.)

Doctor DeSoto and Doctor DeSoto Goes to Africa by William Steig

Doctor Proctor and Mrs. Merriweather by Irma Simonton Black
("This is one of our favorite books. It's about a sister and a brother and pretending.)

Don't Count Your Chicks, illustrated by Ingri and Edgar Parin d'Aulaire

Down, Down the Mountain by Ellis Credle

The Duchess Bakes a Cake by Virginia Kahl
("She puts in it 'bilberries, gooseberries, cranberries, bogberries, blackberries, mulberries, burberries, dogberries...and then more yeast--it seemed like a ton....'")

The Erie Canal by Peter Spier (and others by him)

Flicka, Ricka, Dicka and Snipp, Snapp, Snurr stories by Maj Lindeman

Follow the Drinking Gourd, story and pictures by Jeanette Winter

Geraldine's Big Snow by Holly Keller
("A little girl is waiting for the snow to come.")

Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

Grandfather and the Honey Tree by Sam and Zoa Swayne
("Very, very funny!")

The Grouchy Ladybug and others by Eric Carle
("The Grouchy Ladybug learns not to be grouchy.)

Hear Ye of Boston by Polly Curren

A Hole is to Dig by Ruth Krauss, illustrated by Maurice Sendak

Honschi by Aline Glasgos
(This story of a chickadee takes place in Japan.)

How Do You Hide a Monster? by Virginia Kahl

How Many Dragons Behind the Door? by Virginia Kahl

I Like Butterflies by Gladys Conklin

I Want to be a Mother by Carla Greene

If I Were a Mother.... by Kazue Mizumura

"Like Mother Hen,
I would wish to have
many children
and see them play
around me.

"And like Mother Cat,
with loving care
I would keep them clean
I would keep them neat.

"And what is more
Like Mother Monkey,
I would check very carefully
the backs of their ears.

"Of course like Mother Kangaroo
I would carry my baby
Wherever I go
in my arms or in a buggy....."


If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff

The Importance of Crocus by Roger Duvoisin
(Crocus the Crocodile finds that he does have a talent that blesses others.)

The Josefina Story Quilt by Eleanor Coerr

Journey Cake, Ho! by Ruth Sawyer, pictures by Robert McCloskey
("My favorite part is when the journey cake leads the boy in a great big circle, bringing him home with more animals.")

Kindness is a Lot of Things Edith Eckblad

The Late Cuckoo by Louis Slobodkin

Let's Find Out What's Big and What's Small by Martha and Charles Shapp
(This is nicely illustrated and not exactly what you expect. A study in comparison and contrast.)

Little Bear Books by Else Holmelund Minarik

Little Bear Books by Janice
(Our favorite is Little Bears Pancake Party: "I couldn't eat another pancake even if I tried--unless I grew another tummy on my other side!")

The Little House by Virginia Burton
("I just like how she doesn't like the city as well as the country.")

The Little Old Automobile by Marie Hall Ets
("The Little Old Automobile crashes into birds, ducks, and everything else he sees until, in the end, he crashes into a train! He flew up into the air and never came down except in pieces. The pieces become homes for all the animals!")

A Little Old Man by Natalie Norton

Little Peewee, or, Now Open the Box by Dorothy Kunhardt

Little Toot books by Hardie Gramatky
(Little Toot always learns a lesson as he travels the world!)

Madeleine books by Ludwig Bemelmans

Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey (and others by this author)

The Man Who Walked around the World by Benjamin Elkin
("A man going to a distant country accidentally walked a huge circle and thought he walked around the world.")

May We Sleep Here Tonight? by Tan Koide

Millions of Cats by Wanda Ga'g

Miss Twiggley's Tree by Dorothea Warren Fox

Mouse Six and the Happy Birthday by Miska Miles

Mr. Pine's Mixed-Up Signs by Lenore Kessler
(I thought this book was wonderfully fun when I was a little girl. The illustrations are not that great, but my children have enjoyed it as much as I did.)

My Book House, In the Nursery compiled by Olive Beaupré Miller
("This is our favorite book of nursery rhymes because the pictures are so nice.")

My Mother is the Most Beautiful Woman in the World by Becky Reyher

Mystery of the Missing Red Mitten by Steven Kellogg

The New Baby by Stan and Jan Berenstain
(This is the only Berenstain Bears book that we shelve.)

A New Baby is Coming to My House, illustrated by Chihiro Iwasaki
("A little girl is all excited to see her baby brother for the first time.")

Norman the Doorman by Don Freeman

Our Country's Story by Frances Cavanah, illustrated by Janice Holland (This book had two different illustrators during its published life. The Holland illustrations are far superior in our opinion.)

The Owl and the Pussy Cat by Edward Lear, illustrated by Jan Brett

Panda Cake by Rosalie Seidler
(This is a fun rhythmic story that teaches a good lesson!)

Panda Palace by Stephanie Calmenson

Papa, Please Get the Moon for Me by Eric Carle
(We like most of Eric Carle's books!)

Pelle's New Suit by Elsa Beskow

Petunia and others by Roger Duvoisin

Picco, the Sad Italian Pony by Louis Slobodkin

Plum Pudding for Christmas by Virginia Kahl

The Princess and the Kiss by Jennie Bishop

Richard Scarry's books
(I don't particularly care for these for reading aloud, but my non-readers adore his pictures!)

Rock-a-Bye Farm by Diane Johnson Hamm
(If you aren't philosophically opposed to ever rocking babies to sleep, you will like this one too!)

Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown

The Runaway Pancake by Asbjornsen and Moe
(We would dearly love to find a copy of the Pellham books edition illustrated by Otto S. Svend!)

Simple Pictures are Best by Nancy Willard, pictures by Tomie de Paola
(The shoemaker and his wife receive encouragement in humility and good sense!)

Sir Kevin of Devon by Adelaide Holl, illustrated by Leonard Weisgard

The Sorely Trying Day by Russell Hoban

The Stable that Stayed by Josephine Balfour Payne
(This emphasizes our love of home and celebrates families.)

Stone Soup by Marcia Brown

The Story of Ping by Marjorie Flack and Kurt Wiese
("This is about a naughty little duck!")

The Story of Babar and most others by Jean de Brunhoff

Sylvester, The Mouse with the Musical Ear by Adelaide Holl

Tales from Fern Hollow series by John Patience
(These are cute stories. They are predictable and not great literature, but they're attractive and my children enjoy them.)

Taro and the Tofu by Masako Matsuno

Tasha Tudor's Five Senses

Tasha Tudor's Mother Goose

The Thirsty Little Lambs (no author given) from the Meet the Pets series, Litor Publishers, Brighton, England 

Thomas the Tank Engine and others by Rev. Awdry

The Three Little Pigs, IN VERSE, author unknown, illustrated by William Pène du Bois

Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel

Tops and Bottoms adapted and illustrated Janet Stevens
("This bear learns not to be lazy!")

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
(This was our introduction to Eric Carle's books.)

The Very Little Girl by Phyllis Krasilovsky

The Way of an Ant by Kazue Mizumura
(I like this silly story. I like the part where he sees the oak tree and tries to reach the sky.")

Welcome, Little Baby by Aliki
("I like this because the pictures are so cute and...I like what they say they will teach the baby." [This little baby is modestly nursed!])

What is it .... series by Anna Pistorius

When Stars Come Out by L. J. Sattgast

Where Does the Brown Bear Go? by Nicki Weiss
("I like it that home ends up to be the little boy's bed.")

Where's Henrietta's Hen by Bernice Freschet
("The blackbirds tell Henrietta where her lost hen might be."
"The hen gets lost and all the animals try to tell her where it is."
"...but one of them tells her where it is.")

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod by Eugene Field