The Ultimate List of 58 Books About Siblings

Updated Feb. 25, 2019

One of my friends recently expressed gratitude for "life scouts" in his life—he wasn't talking about an official scouting program, rather about his siblings, who had gone before and "scouted" out life for him, so that he had a little more information when his turn came along. There are bumps along the road with any sibling relationship, as there are in any meaningful relationship, and at their worst siblings can appear to have no purpose in life other than to make your own difficult. However, at their best, they are your sworn protectors, fiercest allies and best friends. Luckily, the balance of a lifetime shift siblings role closer to "best friends" than "worst enemies," as long as siblings are putting in the effort along the way to forgive and remember they love each other. These are some of our favorite children's books showing sibling dynamics—they provide meaningful ways to talk about how to deal with different situations with siblings and keep an eye on what matters most!

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler book
#1
From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
Written by E.L. Konigsburg
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Having run away with her younger brother to live in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, twelve-year-old Claudia strives to keep things in order in their new home and to become a changed person and a heroine to herself.

When Charlie McButton Lost Power book
#2
When Charlie McButton Lost Power
Written by Suzanne Collins and illustrated by Mike Lester
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Charlie McButton likes computer games so much, he never plays with anything else. When a thunderstorm knocks out the electricity, his tech empire comes tumbling down, and his whole world loses power. Charlie needs batteries?FAST! But the only triple- A?s he can find are in his little sister?s talking doll. Will he resort to desperate measures and cause his sister to have a meltdown of her own? Or will he snap out of his computer craze long enough to realize his sister might be fun, even if she doesn?t come with batteries? Collins and Lester team up for a hilarious and timely tale that will crack up young computer addicts and those who love them!

The Cow Who Climbed a Tree book
#3
The Cow Who Climbed a Tree
Written and illustrated by Gemma Merino
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Tina isn't like the other cows. She believes that the sky is the limit and that everything is possible. But her sisters aren't convinced—and when Tina tells them she has climbed a tree and met a dragon, they decide that her nonsense has gone too far. Off they go into the woods to find her…and soon discover a world of surprises!

Velma Gratch and the Way Cool Butterfly book
#4
Velma Gratch and the Way Cool Butterfly
Written by Alan Madison and illustrated by Kevin Hawkes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Velma starts first grade in the shadow of her memorable older sisters, and while her newfound interest in butterflies helps her to stand out, it also leads to an interesting complication.

Ish book
#5
Ish
Written and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Ramon loved to draw. Anytime. Anything. Anywhere. Drawing is what Ramon does. It¹s what makes him happy. But in one split second, all that changes. A single reckless remark by Ramon's older brother, Leon, turns Ramon's carefree sketches into joyless struggles. Luckily for Ramon, though, his little sister, Marisol, sees the world differently. She opens his eyes to something a lot more valuable than getting things just "right." Combining the spareness of fable with the potency of parable, Peter Reynolds shines a bright beam of light on the need to kindle and tend our creative flames with care.

The New Small Person book
#6
The New Small Person
Written and illustrated by Lauren Child
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Feeling jealous when a new sibling arrives, little Elmore Green becomes frustrated when the "small person" knocks over his things and licks his jelly-bean collection until a special night when their relationship changes. By the award-winning author of the Charlie and Lola series.

Sheila Rae, the Brave book
#7
Sheila Rae, the Brave
Written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Written and illustrated by Kevin Henkes, the nationally bestselling and celebrated creator of Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, Owen, and Kitten's First Full Moon, Shelia Rae, the Brave is a warm, humorous, and loving story of sibling sympathy and support. Just because Sheila Rae is older, she doesn't always know better! "I am very brave," Sheila Rae said, patting herself on the back. She wasn't afraid of anything—not thunder, not lightning, not the big black dog at the end of the block. And when she wanted to walk home a new way and Louise wouldn't, she called her sister a scaredy-cat and set out alone. But all the bravado in the world failed to help when Sheila Rae found herself lost. Luckily, her sister was not far behind. "Children will love it."—School Library Journal Supports the Common Core State Standards

Little Miss, Big Sis book
#8
Little Miss, Big Sis
Written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and illustrated by Peter H Reynolds
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The big news is this—Little Miss becomes a big sis! In the perfect follow-up to Plant a Kiss, Little Miss learns the wonders of becoming a big sister as she and her family celebrate the momentous arrival of a new baby. New York Times bestselling author Amy Krouse Rosenthal and award-winning illustrator Peter H. Reynolds have teamed up once again to create a charming story about Little Miss. Little Miss, Big Sis is the perfect gift for any child becoming a big brother or sister and any expecting families!

Flora's Very Windy Day book
#9
Flora's Very Windy Day
Written by Jeanne Birdsall and illustrated by Matt Phelan
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

When a big wind blows away her annoying little brother Crispin, Flora decides to save him despite the many tempting offers she gets for him from, among others, a cloud, an eagle, the man in the moon and the wind itself.

Brave As Can Be: A Book of Courage book
#10
Brave As Can Be: A Book of Courage
Written by Jo Witek and illustrated by Christine Roussey
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

From the author and illustrator of the bestselling In My Heart! The life of a toddler can be full of frightening things: the dark, the neighbor’s dog, and thunderstorms, just to name a few. As children get older, they begin to feel braver around these everyday events, but how do they build this newfound confidence? In this lyrical, insightful picture book, an older sister explains to her younger sister all the things she used to be afraid of, along with some tricks to help, whether it’s a special blanket for bedtime or singing during a storm. Now, big sister assures little sister, the fears that once felt as big as a mountain feel as minuscule as a speck of dust. This playful portrait of fear and bravery empowers young readers to confront once-scary situations and, with charming illustrations and die-cuts throughout, is also beautifully packaged. The Growing Hearts series celebrates the milestones of a toddler’s emotional development, from conquering fears and expressing feelings to welcoming a new sibling.

Wolfie the Bunny book
#11
Wolfie the Bunny
Written by Ame Dyckman and illustrated by Zachariah OHora
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Families of all kinds will delight in this sweet tale of new babies, sibling rivalry, bravery, unconditional love...and veggies! The Bunny family has adopted a wolf son, and daughter Dot is the only one who realizes Wolfie can--and might--eat them all up! Dot tries to get through to her parents, but they are too smitten to listen. A new brother takes getting used to, and when (in a twist of fate) it's Wolfie who's threatened, can Dot save the day?

Bear Likes Jam book
#12
Bear Likes Jam
Written and illustrated by Ciara Gavin
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

In their blended family, Mama Duck worries when Bear eats too much jam, but when the ducklings play a game with their vegetables, Bear starts to eat the strange green things on his plate.

Poppy Louise Is Not Afraid of Anything book
#13
Poppy Louise Is Not Afraid of Anything
Written by Jenna McCarthy and illustrated by Molly Idle
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Poppy Louise Littleton is not afraid of anything . . . almost. Fans of Ladybug Girl and other girl-power heroines will fall in love with this spunky character! Poppy Louise Littleton thinks vampires are cute and mummies are funny. She’s positive a tarantula would make a perfect pet. All her imaginary friends are monsters. Is there anything that will scare her? Her sister, Petunia, is determined to find out. . . . In this inviting picture book, Jenna McCarthy brings us a new character who feels at once modern and timeless. Girls and boys will recognize themselves in Poppy Louise (and maybe sometimes in her sister, Petunia) and will gobble up Molly Idle’s deliciously cinematic spreads, which highlight the drama of Poppy Louise’s escapades.

Louise Loves Art book
#14
Louise Loves Art
Written and illustrated by Kelly Light
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

For fans of Olivia and Eloise, this stunning debut from Kelly Light is an irresistible story about the importance of creativity in all its forms. Meet Louise. Louise loves art more than anything. It's her imagination on the outside. She is determined to create a masterpiece—her pièce de résistance! Louise also loves Art, her little brother. This is their story. Louise Loves Art is a celebration of the brilliant artist who resides in all of us.

A New Chick for Chickies book
#15
A New Chick for Chickies
Written and illustrated by Janee Trasler
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-4

For Chickies life was good. Life was perfect until . . . CRAAACK . . . the Chickies have a new brother! With engaging rhymes, endearing illustrations, and a soft padded cover, Janee Trasler's books are perfect for babies and toddlers to enjoy. Big sisters- and brothers-to-be will be excited to take a cue from the lovable Chickies and cheep for joy when a new baby arrives!

Babies Ruin Everything book
#16
Babies Ruin Everything
Written by Matthew Swanson and illustrated by Robbi Behr
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

Meet the baby who ruins everything, and the big sister who learns to love him. Together, they make this laugh out loud picture book the perfect gift for new siblings and baby showers! The baby can't stand on one foot. He can't throw a Frisbee. And he can't whistle! Even big-head Benny Hogarth can whistle, and he already lost his front teeth! So says a spunky little girl who thinks her new baby brother is ruining EVERYTHING: wrecking her room, drooling all over her toys, and throwing a wrench in her birthday party plans. But when she opens her heart, this big sister realizes she might be the real problem-the baby's just a baby, after all. Maybe all he needs is a better big sister. Tall kids, small kids, and parents alike will laugh through this funny and sweet tale of learning how wonderful-and lucky-it is to have a new sibling.

Maple and Willow Together book
#17
Maple and Willow Together
Written and illustrated by Lori Nichols
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Celebrating imagination and inventive play, Lori Nichols’ follow-up to Maple perfectly captures the dynamics of siblings and their ability to figure things out on their own and find a way to meet halfway. Maple and Willow do everything together. They love playing outside throughout the whole year, welcoming the sun, rain, leaves, and snow. But it’s not always sunshine and rainbows, because sometimes big sisters can be bossy—and sometimes little sisters can be frustrating—and even the best of friends need a break from each other . . . at least until they can no longer bear to be apart.

Owl Babies book
#18
Owl Babies
Written by Martin Waddell and illustrated by Patrick Benson
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

When three baby owls awake one night to find their mother gone, they can't help but wonder where she is. Stunning illustrations capture the owls as they worry about their mother: What is she doing? When will she be back? Not surprisingly, a joyous flapping and dancing and bouncing greets her return, lending a celebratory tone to the ending of this comforting tale. Never has the plight of young ones who miss their mother been so simply told or so beautifully rendered.

Martha Doesn't Share book
#19
Martha Doesn't Share
Written by Samantha Berger and illustrated by Bruce Whatley
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Martha has officially mastered apologizing. Unfortunately, she still has a lot to work on when it comes to sharing. And while she doesn't learn to love it, she does discover that having her toys to herself means having to play with them all by herself, too. Not so fun! This hilarious follow-up to Martha doesn't say sorry! shows readers that sharing isn't all that bad when you take it one (small) toy at a time—like Martha does. It gets easier every day. Well, almost every day.

Best Friends for Frances book
#20
Best Friends for Frances
Written by Russell Hoban and illustrated by Lillian Hoban
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Frances doesn't think her younger sister Gloria can be her friend. Gloria is too small to throw or catch a ball. Besides, Albert is Frances's friend. But when Albert has a no-girls baseball game, Frances sets out to prove to Albert a thing or two about friendship—and a thing or two about what girls can do. Along the way, Frances discovers that sisters can indeed be friends . . . maybe even best friends. Now reillustrated in lovely soft pastels by original artist Lillian Hoban, this satisfying story of friendship is sure to have the many fans of this irresponsible badger cheering once again.

Clara and Davie book
#21
Clara and Davie
Written and illustrated by Patricia Polacco
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Describes how a young, shy Clara Barton loved and nurtured animals and plants before her older brother recognized Clara's gifts and encouraged her to develop her healing skills.

Gemma and Gus book
#22
Gemma and Gus
Written and illustrated by Olivier Dunrea
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Meet Gemma and Gus, a sister and brother team from Olivier Dunrea's world of Gossie & Friends! Gemma is the big sister. Gus is the little brother. Gus is always following Gemma around, but one day Gus sets out on his own. Now just who is following whom? In this sturdy board book, Olivier Dunrea explores a close, patient, sometimes competitive but always relatable sibling relationship, with the perfectly pitched storytelling and endearing illustration style that Gossie & Friends fans have come to cherish.

What Brothers Do Best book
#23
What Brothers Do Best
Written by Laura Numeroff and illustrated by Lynn Munsinger
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

This delightful board book by renowned author-illustrator team Laura Numeroff and Lynn Munsinger celebrates all the wonderful things brothers can do! Brothers can push you on a swing, make music with you, and take you to the library. But what do brothers do best? The answer is clear in this appealing board book, celebrating brothers and the everyday things they do.

What Sisters Do Best book
#24
What Sisters Do Best
Written by Laura Numeroff and illustrated by Lynn Munsinger
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

This delightful board book by renowned author-illustrator team Laura Numeroff and Lynn Munsinger celebrates all the wonderful things sisters can do! Sisters can do lots of things, like teach you how to swim, start a game of tag, and be there when you need them. But what do they do best? The answer is clear in this irresistible celebration of sisters and the everyday things they do.

Another Brother book
#25
Another Brother
Written and illustrated by Matthew Cordell
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-6

Davy the sheep wishes he had time alone with his parents, as he did before his 12 brothers came along and started imitating his every move, but when his wish comes true, Davy misses playing with the youngsters.

Have a suggestion for a book to add to this list? Send an email to [email protected]!