Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to cousins. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about cousins.
Our list includes picture books and chapter books. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid.
When it comes to children’s stories about cousins, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Henry and Mudge and Annie’s Good Move to popular sellers like The Secret Garden.
We hope this list of kids books about cousins can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.
The Crossroads - Jaime and Ángela discover what it means to be living as undocumented immigrants in the United States in this timely sequel to the Pura Belpré Honor Book The Only Road. After crossing Mexico into the United States, Jaime Rivera thinks the worst is over. Starting a new school can’t be that bad. Except it is, and not just because he can barely speak English. While his cousin Ángela fits in quickly, with new friends and after-school activities, Jaime struggles with even the idea of calling this strange place “home.” His real home is with his parents, abuela, and the rest of the family; not here where cacti and cattle outnumber people, where he can no longer be himself—a boy from Guatemala. When bad news arrives from his parents back home, feelings of helplessness and guilt gnaw at Jaime. Gang violence in Guatemala means he can’t return home, but he’s not sure if he wants to stay either. The US is not the great place everyone said it would be, especially if you’re sin papeles—undocumented—like Jaime. When things look bleak, hope arrives from unexpected places: a quiet boy on the bus, a music teacher, an old ranch hand. With his sketchbook always close by, Jaime uses his drawings to show what it means to be a true citizen. Powerful and moving, this touching sequel to The Only Road explores overcoming homesickness, finding ways to connect despite a language barrier, and discovering what it means to start over in a new place that alternates between being wonderful and completely unwelcoming.
Loretta's Gift - Meet a little girl named Loretta who tries to find the perfect gift for her new baby cousin in this sweet picture book by bestselling author Pat Zietlow Miller! Loretta and her parents are so excited that Aunt Esme and Uncle Jax are having a baby! When Gabe arrives, Loretta thinks he is the best baby on the block! Everyone showers him with gifts, but Loretta doesn’t know what to give. Can she think of the perfect gift for her baby cousin?
Rules of the Ruff - Jessie, twelve, copes with what promised to be a long, boring summer with relatives by becoming apprentice to Wes, a grouchy neighborhood dog walker, who is facing new competition.
Cyclone - Nora’s whole world plummets faster than the Cyclone roller coaster when her cousin Riley falls into a coma that Nora thinks is her fault in this warm, big-hearted debut middle grade novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author, Doreen Cronin. Riding the Cyclone, the world famous Coney Island rollercoaster, was supposed to be the highlight of Nora’s summer. But right after they disembark, Nora’s cousin Riley falls to the ground…and doesn’t get up. Nora had begged and dragged Riley onto the ride, and no matter what the doctors say, that she had a heart condition, that it could have happened at any time, Nora knows it was her fault. Then, as Riley comes out of her coma, she’s not really Riley at all. The cousin who used to be loud and funny and unafraid now can’t talk, let alone go to the bathroom by herself. Now she’s only 10% Riley. Nora, guilt eating her up on the inside worse than a Coney Island hotdog, thinks she knows how to help. How to get 100% Riley back. But what Nora doesn’t realize is that the guilt will only get worse as that percentage rises.
The City Kid & the Suburb Kid - The grass may seem greener on the other side—but in the end there’s no place like home. That’s what two boys discover in this fresh and contemporary version of Aesop’s timeless “The City Mouse and the Country Mouse.” And it’s a great value, because the tale is told twice. When kids are done with one half, they simply flip the book over for a different side of the story! Jack can’t wait to spend a week with Adam in the suburbs. No more honking horns! No more hot and noisy subways! And he does enjoy the tree climbing, fishing, and triple-dipped cones. But soon he starts wondering what’s happening with his friends back in the city. And when it’s Adam’s turn to visit, he happily leaves behind his annoying sister and lawns that need mowing: hello, skyscrapers, skateboards, and shopping downtown! Then, just like Jack, he begins to miss all the familiar things he took for granted. Deb Pilutti’s witty writing emphasizes the similarities in the boys’ lives, while Linda Bleck’s vividly-colored pictures cleverly play up the differences. The result: a book that children will read—and love—again and again.
Peppa Pig and the Family Reunion - It’s time for Peppa’s family to get together, and Grandpa and Granny Pig are the first to arrive. Once Auntie Pig, Uncle Pig, Cousin Chloe, and Baby Alexander show up, the whole family is there. Peppa wants to teach the baby how to speak, but all he says is “goo-goo.” It’s a little loud with so many people under one roof, but what matters is celebrating one another — that’s what family is all about.
Royal Crown: From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess - It’s the first coronation of a female monarch of Genovia in 200 years, and Her Royal Highness, Princess Olivia Grace Clarisse Mignonette Harrison, is giving you the inside scoop in this newest (illustrated!) diary from New York Times—bestselling author and illustrator Meg Cabot! Olivia Grace Clarisse Mignonette Harrison should be having fun. Her best friend is visiting from America, her sister’s royal coronation is only three days away (the first coronation of a female ruler in two centuries), and she’s even got a new boyfriend who is actually a very smart and charming prince! But it’s hard to celebrate when her royal cousins are scheming to take over the throne. And with everyone running around, Olivia and her friends have been saddled with royal babysitting duties. Then, to make matters worse, Olivia’s snobby cousin Luisa insists on gossiping about her, especially about things that should be personal . . . it’s none of her business whether Prince Khalil and Olivia have kissed or not! When did growing up royal get so complicated?!?
Charlotte Spies for Justice - In 1864 twelve-year-old former slave Charlotte is lucky enough to live on a plantation near Richmond, Virginia, owned by a Miss Van Lew, who hates slavery, and when Charlotte overhears a conversation she realizes that her mistress is gathering information and passing it on to the Union army; Charlotte is eager to help, (especially since her own cousin, Mary, is involved) but her enthusiasm may endanger them all—or help free 400 Union soldiers who are being moved from Richmond further south.
Abuela's Birthday - Sofia and her cousins are making a piänata for their grandmother’s birthday party, but when Bella the cat gets involved chaos ensues.
City Witch, Country Switch - Mitzi is a city witch—she likes pizza and plays, crowded subways and noisy streets. Muffletump is a country witch—she prefers hayrides and fresh air, pumpkin picking and her pet snake. When the cousins visit each other, their differences come between them. How can they solve their problem? With a spell, of course! But finding the right one isn’t so easy. The rhyming text makes this a wonderful read-aloud, while the vibrant watercolor and colored-pencil artwork contains fantastically funny details for kids to pore over.
The Lost Cousins - A 2019 NewYork Times / New York Public Library Best Illustrated Children’s Book!From the wildly original creator of The Lost House comes an around-the-world seek-and-find adventure! Grandad and his grandchildren are looking at an old photo album when Grandad realizes the children have never met their cousins who are scattered across the globe. It’s time to head off on an adventure to go visit them—but finding the long-lost cousins is harder than it sounds! From icy landscapes to bustling cities to vivid jungles, it seems Grandad’s got relatives everywhere, and these dazzling spreads are full of both cousins and objects for readers to find. With a dizzying array of dazzling spreads, this is the most global and adventurous LOST book yet and will keep kids (and their adults) entertained for hours on end!
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