Writing: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best children's books about writing?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to writing. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about writing.

Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. 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 writing, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Same Sun Here to popular sellers like The Jolly Postman to some of our favorite hidden gems like Mirror Mirror.

We hope this list of kids books about writing 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.

A Poem for Peter book
#1
A Poem for Peter
Written by Andrea Davis Pinkney and illustrated by Lou Fancher and Steve Johnson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

A celebration of the extraordinary life of Ezra Jack Keats, creator of The Snowy Day.

The story of The Snowy Day begins more than one hundred years ago, when Ezra Jack Keats was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. The family were struggling Polish immigrants, and despite Keats’s obvious talent, his father worried that Ezra’s dream of being an artist was an unrealistic one. But Ezra was determined. By high school he was winning prizes and scholarships. Later, jobs followed with the WPA and Marvel comics. But it was many years before Keats’s greatest dream was realized and he had the opportunity to write and illustrate his own book.

For more than two decades, Ezra had kept pinned to his wall a series of photographs of an adorable African American child. In Keats’s hands, the boy morphed into Peter, a boy in a red snowsuit, out enjoying the pristine snow; the book became The Snowy Day, winner of the Caldecott Medal, the first mainstream book to feature an African American child. It was also the first of many books featuring Peter and the children of his — and Keats’s — neighborhood.

Andrea Davis Pinkney’s lyrical narrative tells the inspiring story of a boy who pursued a dream, and who, in turn, inspired generations of other dreamers.

The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles book
#2
The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles
Written by Michelle Cuevas and illustrated by Erin E. Stead
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A message in a bottle holds the promise of surprise and wonder, as told in this enthralling picture book by Caldecott Medalist Erin E. Stead

The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles, who lives alone atop a hill, has a job of the utmost importance. It is his task to open any bottles found at sea and make sure that the messages are delivered. He loves his job, though he has always wished that, someday, one of the letters would be addressed to him. One day he opens a party invitation—but there’s no name attached. As he devotes himself to the mystery of the intended recipient, he ends up finding something even more special: the possibility of new friends.

Malala's Magic Pencil book
#3
Malala's Magic Pencil
Written by Malala Yousafzai and illustrated by Kerascoet
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Malala’s first picture book will inspire young readers everywhere to find the magic all around them. As a child in Pakistan, Malala made a wish for a magic pencil. She would use it to make everyone happy, to erase the smell of garbage from her city, to sleep an extra hour in the morning. But as she grew older, Malala saw that there were more important things to wish for. She saw a world that needed fixing. And even if she never found a magic pencil, Malala realized that she could still work hard every day to make her wishes come true. This beautifully illustrated volume tells Malala’s story for a younger audience and shows them the worldview that allowed Malala to hold on to hope even in the most difficult of times.

The Jolly Postman book
#4
The Jolly Postman
Written by Allan Ahlberg and illustrated by Janet Ahlberg and Allan Ahlberg
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

This gorgeously illustrated, full-color classic celebrates a time before email by depicting amusing correspondence between fairy tale and Mother Goose characters. What could possibly be in a letter from Goldilocks to the Three Bears? Who would write to the Wicked Witch? Open this book, take out the letters, and discover what favorite characters would write to each other—and reimagine best-loved tales together.

Chicken Lily book
#5
Chicken Lily
Written by Lori Mortensen and illustrated by Nina Victor Crittenden
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

“Through puns and poetry, Chicken Lily overcomes her fears and reads a poem onstage at her school poetry jam”—

  1. The Proper Way to Meet a Hedgehog and Other How-To Poems - Be they practical (how to mix a pancake or how to bird-watch) or fanciful (how to scare monsters or how to be a snowflake), the poems in this book boast a flair and joy that you won’t find in any instruction manual. Poets from Kwame Alexander to Pat Mora to Allan Wolf share the way to play hard, to love nature, and to be grateful. Soft, evocative illustrations will encourage readers to look at the world with an eye to its countless possibilities.

  2. Follow Follow - Once upon a time, Mirror Mirror, a brilliant book of fairy tale themed reversos–a poetic form in which the poem is presented forward and then backward–became a smashing success. Now a second book is here with more witty double takes on well-loved fairy tales such as Thumbelina and The Little Mermaid. Read these clever poems from top to bottom and they mean one thing. Then reverse the lines and read from bottom to top and they mean something else–it is almost like magic! A celebration of sight, sound, and story, this book is a marvel to read again and again.

  3. 16 Words: William Carlos Williams and "The Red Wheelbarrow" - This simple nonfiction picture book about the beloved American poet William Carlos Williams is also about how being mindful can result in the creation of a great poem like “The Red Wheelbarrow”—which is only sixteen words long. “Look out the window. What do you see? If you are Dr. William Carlos Williams, you see a wheelbarrow. A drizzle of rain. Chickens scratching in the damp earth.” The wheelbarrow belongs to Thaddeus Marshall, a street vendor, who every day goes to work selling vegetables on the streets of Rutherford, New Jersey. That simple action inspires poet and doctor Williams to pick up some of his own tools—a pen and paper—and write his most famous poem. In this lovely picture book, young listeners will see how paying attention to the simplest everyday things can inspire the greatest art, as they learn about a great American poet.

  4. Ike's Incredible Ink - Cleaning his room and talking to his best friend while preparing to write what he knows will be an incredible story, little Ike discovers that he is missing just the right ink to get his project underway, a need that requires extraordinary effort to fulfill.

Mirror Mirror book
#10
Mirror Mirror
Written by Marilyn Singer and illustrated by Josee Masse
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

What’s brewing when two favorites—poetry and fairy tales—are turned (literally) on their heads? It’s a revolutionary recipe: an infectious new genre of poetry and a lovably modern take on classic stories.

First, read the poems forward (how old-fashioned!), then reverse the lines and read again to give familiar tales, from Sleeping Beauty to that Charming Prince, a delicious new spin. Witty, irreverent, and warm, this gorgeously illustrated and utterly unique offering holds a mirror up to language and fairy tales, and renews the fun and magic of both.

Bear's Book book
#11
Bear's Book
Written by Claire Freedman and illustrated by Alison Friend
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

A story about stories, writing, reading, and friendship When Bear’s favorite book of stories falls apart, he is determined to write one of his own. He ventures into the forest for inspiration, but writing is harder than he thinks, and he soon discovers that he needs help from his friends. See how Bear transforms their day into a wonderful adventure in this story about creativity and friendship.

Poppy's Best Paper book
#12
Poppy's Best Paper
Written by Susan Eaddy and illustrated by Rosalinde Bonnet
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Fans of Olivia and Lilly will delight in Poppy, a little rabbit with big dreams—and an even bigger personality.

More than anything, Poppy wants to be a verrrry famous writer. She’s sure Mrs. Rose will pick her paper to read to the whole class! Trouble is, she has tall ambitions but is short on effort, and her jealousy takes over when her best friend’s paper is chosen instead. In the end, Poppy discovers that she has to get out of her own way if her big dreams are going to come true.

Rosalinde’s adorable, expressive illustrations make memorable, quirky Poppy a real star!

The Road Not Taken book
#13
The Road Not Taken
Written by Robert Frost and illustrated by Vivian Mineker
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

For all of life’s adventures comes this beautifully illustrated companion inspired by Robert Frost’s perennial poem “The Road Not Taken.” Heartwarming illustrations of a young boy journeying through a yellow wood accompany the original text of the poem. When a fork in the road arises for the boy, so too does the first of life’s many choices. And as the poem progresses, so does the boy’s life: college, career, marriage, family, loss, and, by journey’s end, the sweet satisfaction of a life fully lived. The first children’s book ever made of Frost’s famous poem, this moving presentation makes an inspiring gift for graduation, marriage, career moves, and all of life’s exciting roads.

Woke book
#14
Woke
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-11

Historically poets have been on the forefront of social movements. Woke is a collection of poems by women that reflects the joy and passion in the fight for social justice, tackling topics from discrimination to empathy, and acceptance to speaking out.

With Theodore Taylor’s bright, emotional art, and writting from Mahogany L. Browne, Elizabeth Acevedo and Olivia Gatwood, kids will be inspired to create their own art and poems to express how they see justice and injustice.

  1. The Night Before My Birthday - In rhyming text based on “The Night Before Christmas,” a child is filled with excitement and anticipation while helping with preparations for the next day’s birthday party, and even an ice cream emergency cannot spoil the day.

  2. Finding Treasure: A Collection of Collections - Clever poems tell the story of one inquisitive child’s quest to start just the right collection to share at school. While everyone else is excited about presenting their treasures, one creative elementary schooler is stressed about her class’s show-and-tell assignment. How is she supposed to share her collection if she doesn’t collect anything? Polling her parents, gathering with Granny and Grandpa, and searching for the secret behind her siblings’ obsession with baseball cards, she discovers she does, in fact, have something to share: a collection of stories and poems!

  3. Dear Dragon - A sweet and clever friendship story in rhyme, about looking past physical differences to appreciate the person (or dragon) underneath. George and Blaise are pen pals, and they write letters to each other about everything: their pets, birthdays, favorite sports, and science fair projects. There’s just one thing that the two friends don’t know: George is a human, while Blaise is a dragon! What will happen when these pen pals finally meet face-to-face?

  4. How Do I Love Thee? - A gorgeous reinvention of Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s famous “Sonnet 43” from the bestselling author of the BabyLit board books and the acclaimed illustrator of Over and Under the Snow. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. Whether in soft sunlight or rain-drizzled night or winter’s frost-etched breath, three children share the love and joy of friendship while exploring the wonders of nature. Bestselling author Jennifer Adams has reimagined Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s beloved “Sonnet 43,” best known by its opening lines, creating a lyrical, evocative ode to the love of family and friends. Christopher Silas Neal brings the poetry to life with his beautiful, imaginative, and whimsical illustrations.

Rufus the Writer book
#19
Rufus the Writer
Written by Elizabeth Bram and illustrated by Chuck Groenink
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Rather than a lemonade stand, Rufus sets up a story stand one summer and makes a series of trades with his friends—a story for a shell, for a kitten, for a surprise, and one more as a special birthday gift for his sister.

Polly Diamond and the Magic Book book
#20
Polly Diamond and the Magic Book
Written by Alice Kuipers and illustrated by Diana Toledano
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Polly loves words. And she loves writing stories. So when a magic book appears on her doorstep that can make everything she writes happen in real life, Polly is certain all of her dreams are about to come true. But she soon learns that what you write and what you mean are not always the same thing! Funny and touching, this new chapter book series will entertain readers and inspire budding writers.

Kindergarten, Here I Come! book
#21
Kindergarten, Here I Come!
Written by D.J. Steinberg and illustrated by Mark Chambers
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Get ready for school with these fun poems!

This adorable picture book celebrates all the familiar milestones and moments shared by every single kindergartener. Whether it’s the first-day-of-school jitters or the hundredth-day-of-school party, every aspect of the kindergarten experience is introduced with a light and funny poem–not to mention charming illustrations.

Trees book
#22
Trees
Written by Verlie Hutchens and illustrated by Jing Jing Tsong
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Every tree has its own story to tell in this evocative collection of poems celebrating the many varieties—from maple to willow to oak.

There are so many different kinds of trees in the world, and each has special qualities that make it unique. This lyrical, fanciful collection of poems celebrates the singular beauty of each tree, from the gnarled old apple tree to the tall and graceful aspen.

Trick-or-Treat book
#23
Trick-or-Treat
Written by Debbie Leppanen and illustrated by Tad Carpenter
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

This frighteningly funny collection of Halloween poems is perfect for sharing! It’s that time of year again… The wind is howling, the leaves are blowing. A sliver of moon is barely showing. And the happy haunters are ready for a monstrous good time! In this collection of fifteen sweet, silly, and seriously fun rhyming poems, young readers will meet hungry ghouls, sneaky ghosts, and frisky skeletons, all who love partying in the moonlight. It’s a Halloween spook-tacular like no other!

  1. I Have an Idea! - From one of the true creative geniuses of this generation comes a unique meditation on and celebration of the magic of the birth of a simple idea. Sparkling with visual wit and bubbling with imagination, this is a richly emotional exploration of the creative process: from an initial tentative inkling, to the frustration of chasing the wrong notion, to finally the exhilaration of capturing—and nurturing—just the right idea. I Have an Idea! is a scrumptious cloth-spined package of color and inspiration equally at home on a child’s bookshelf, in a new graduate’s backpack, or atop a creative’s desk.

  2. Little Red Writing - Acclaimed writer Joan Holub and Caldecott Honoree Melissa Sweet team up in this hilarious and exuberant retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, in which a brave little red pencil finds her way through the many perils of writing a story.

  3. Also an Octopus - Even the most totally awesome story starts with a little bit of nothing. What happens next is up to you! A delightfully meta picture book that will set imaginations soaring. It begins with an octopus who plays the ukulele. Since this is a story, the octopus has to want something—maybe to travel to faraway galaxies in a totally awesome purple spaceship. Then the octopus sets out to build a spaceship out of soda cans, glue, umbrellas, glitter, and waffles. OK, maybe the octopus needs some help, like from an adorable bunny friend, and maybe that bunny turns out to be . . . a rocket scientist? (Probably not.) But could something even more amazing come to pass? Debut author Maggie Tokuda-Hall, with the help of illustrator Benji Davies, sets up an endearingly funny story, then hands the baton to readers, who will be more than primed to take it away.

  4. Forever or a Day - What does time mean to you? Sometimes it feels like it could last Forever or a Day. The seconds that count in catching the bus; The idyllic hours that slip by so quickly during a perfect day on the lake; The summer days that disappear into blissful happiness . . . Sarah Jacoby’s debut picture book as an author and illustrator is as elegant as a poem and as perfectly paced as a mystery. This beautiful picture books follows an unassuming narrator through a meditation on time through the course of a single day. Inviting comparisons to Virginia Lee Burton and Margaret Wise Brown, this book’s musings on time are at once simple, peaceful, and profound—the work of a truly genius picture book maker.

Basho and the River Stones book
#28
Basho and the River Stones
Written by Tim J Myers and illustrated by Oki Han
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-10

The great poet Basho lives in the woods and shares the cherries from his cherry tree with the local foxes. But one tricky fox becomes greedy––He uses his magic to turn three river stones into gold coins, and then tricks Basho into giving up all of the cherries. When the fox returns to gloat over his victory, he discovers that Basho is content. Wiser than the fox, Basho knows that a poem inspired by the beauty of the river stones is more valuable than gold. Oki S. Han’s watercolors evoke ancient Japan in this sequel to the New York Times bestseller Basho and the Fox.

A Celebration of the Seasons: Goodnight Songs book
#29
A Celebration of the Seasons: Goodnight Songs
Written and illustrated by Margaret Wise Brown
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Now this collection of beautiful nature-themed poems by Margaret Wise Brown (Goodnight Moon) comes in an adorable board edition—still gorgeously illustrated by 12 award-winning artists. Fluffy clouds, butterflies, furry bunnies, and life from a bug’s-eye view: This stunning sequel to TheNew York Times bestseller Goodnight Songs celebrates the beauty and wonder of nature all year long. Once again, a treasure trove of Margaret Wise Brown’s newly discovered verses receives loving treatment from 12 award-winning artists, including Floyd Cooper, Peter Brown, David Small, Molly Idle, and Bob Staake. From a little bear singing one morning in May to a soft snowfall, mysterious, deep, and glowing, each song is magical. The array of award-winning illustrators who bring Wise Brown’s songs to life are: Peter Brown, Floyd Cooper, Leo Espinosa, Blanca Gómez, Molly Idle, Elly MacKay, Dadu Shin, David Small, Bob Staake, Satoe Tone, Frank Viva, and Mick Wiggins.

Kissed by the Moon book
#30
Kissed by the Moon
Written and illustrated by Alison Lester
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-5

May you, my baby, sleep softly at night, and when dawn lights the world, may you wake up to birdsong. Part poem, part lullaby, this gentle story celebrates a baby’s wonder at our beautiful world. From Australia’s favorite picture-book creator, Alison Lester, comes a timeless book to share and to treasure.

Guyku: A Year of Haiku for Boys book
#31
Guyku: A Year of Haiku for Boys
Written by Bob Raczka and illustrated by Peter H Reynolds
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

The wind and I play tug-of-war with my new kite. The wind is winning.

When you’re a guy, nature is one big playground—no matter what the season. There are puddles to splash through in the spring, pine trees to climb in the summer, maple seeds to catch in the fall, and icicles to sword fight with in the winter. Nature also has a way of making a guy appreciate important stuff—like how many rocks it takes to dam up a stream, or how much snow equals a day off from school. So what kind of poetry best captures these special moments, at a length that lets guys get right back to tree climbing and kite flying? Why, guyku, of course!

Water Sings Blue book
#32
Water Sings Blue
Written by Kate Coombs and illustrated by Meilo So
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Come down to the shore with this rich and vivid celebration of the ocean! With watercolors gorgeous enough to wade in by award-winning artist Meilo So and playful, moving poems by Kate Coombs, Water Sings Blue evokes the beauty and power, the depth and mystery, and the endless resonance of the sea.

  1. Mightier Than the Sword - Wildly funny and inventive, this interactive book pulls you, the reader, into the action. Yes, YOU! You wake up in the fictional land of Astorya, where stories from our world come to life. You’re a real human being (we assume), and in this fictional world, that makes you a superhero. Armed with your trusty pencil you have the power to create: what you write, draw, or scribble in the book becomes part of the story! Only you can rescue Prince S. from the evil Queen Rulette. Aided by the Couriers–a French stoat with dangerous dance moves, a giant dung beetle, a fire ninja, a Pegasus-centaur-cowgirl and a super-intelligent femalien chameleon–you must write, draw, and puzzle your way through a hilarious adventure that is unique to every reader! And most importantly, you must prove that the pencil is mightier than the sword.

  2. Fania's Heart - Ten-year-old Sorale discovers a tiny heart-shaped book among her mother’s belongings. Its pages are shaped like four-petaled flowers, upon which are written words in languages Sorale does not understand. Who wrote these words? Where did the heart come from? Why has her mother never mentioned this tiny book before? Fania’s Heart reveals the story of the crafting of the heart, against all odds, within the confines of Auschwitz, and of the women of immeasurable resilience, courage and loyalty who risked their lives for Sorale’s mother, their friend.

  3. The 78-Story Treehouse - Andy and Terry live in a 78-story treehouse. (It used to be a 65-story treehouse, but they just keep building more levels!) It has a drive-thru car wash, a courtroom with a robot judge called Edward Gavelhead, a scribbletorium, a combining machine, an ALL-BALL sports stadium, a high-security potato chip storage facility, and an open-air movie theatre with a super-giant screen . . . which is a very useful thing to have now that Terry’s going to be a big-shot movie star! After Andy gets cut out of the movie, he and Terry have a big fight and decide they don’t want to be best friends anymore. But with a herd of sneaky spy cows out to steal all their story ideas, can Andy and Terry make up before it’s too late?

  4. Skylark and Wallcreeper - While helping her granny Collette evacuate to a makeshift shelter in Brooklyn during Superstorm Sandy, Lily uncovers secrets of her grandmother’s past as a member of the French Resistance during WWII. Queens, 2012. Hurricane Sandy is flooding New York City, and Lily is at a nursing home with her grandmother, Collette. Lily visits Collette often, as she is beginning to lose her memories. When the National Guard shows up to evacuate the building and take them to safety at the Park Slope armory in Brooklyn, Lily’s granny suddenly produces a red box she’s hidden in a closet for years. Once they get to safety, Lily opens the box, where she finds an old, beautiful Montblanc pen. Granny tells Lily that the pen is very important and that she has to take care of it, as well as some letters written in French. But Lily loses the pen in the course of helping other nursing home residents, and as she searches the city trying to find it, she learns more about her grandmother’s past in France and begins to uncover the significance of the pen with the help of her best friend, a quirky pen expert, and a larger-than-life, off-Broadway understudy. Told in alternating sections (2012 and 1944), this engaging book explores a deep friendship during difficult times and the importance of family.

Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Future Author Extraordinaire book
#37
Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Future Author Extraordinaire
Written by Susan Tan and illustrated by Dana Wulfekotte
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Cilla Lee-Jenkins is 50% Chinese, 50% Caucasian, and 100% destined for literary greatness! Priscilla “Cilla” Lee-Jenkins is on a tight deadline. Her baby sister is about to be born, and Cilla needs to become a bestselling author before her family forgets all about her. So she writes about what she knows best—herself! Stories from her bestselling memoir include: - How she dealt with being bald until she was five - How she overcame her struggles with reading - How family traditions with her Grandma and Grandpa Jenkins and her Chinese grandparents, Nai Nai and Ye Ye, are so different Debut author Susan Tan has written a novel bursting with love and humor, as told through a bright, irresistible biracial protagonist who will win your heart and make you laugh.

The 52-Story Treehouse book
#38
The 52-Story Treehouse
Written by Andy Griffiths and illustrated by Terry Denton
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

Andy and Terry try to solve the mystery of: What happened to Mr. Big Nose? After all, it’s hard to turn in your next book when your publisher has vanished.

Blueberry Pancakes Forever: Finding Serendipity Book Three book
#39
Blueberry Pancakes Forever: Finding Serendipity Book Three
Written by Angelica Banks
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

In this third middle-grade adventure from the author of Finding Serendipity, Tuesday McGillycuddy must grapple with a new villain in the Land of Story.

After an unthinkable loss, time seems to freeze for Tuesday and her mother, the famous author Serendipity Smith. In the land of story, Vivienne Small’s world is frozen too—a perpetual winter has fallen. When a terrible villain takes Vivienne hostage, it’s up to Tuesday to save her friend—and herself. On her quest, she’ll discover what lies at the bottom of her heart, and at the heart of her writing.

Beautifully told with warmth and joy, this great adventure is a celebration of life—and love. Don’t miss this heartwarming conclusion to the Finding Serendipity series!

Writing Radar book
#40
Writing Radar
Written by Jack Gantos
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

The Newbery Award–winning author of Dead End in Norvelt shares advice for how to be the best brilliant writer in this funny and practical creative writing guide perfect for all kids who dream of seeing their name on the spine of a book. With the signature wit and humor that have garnered him legions of fans, Jack Gantos instructs young writers on using their “writing radar” to unearth story ideas from their everyday lives. Incorporating his own misadventures as a developing writer, Gantos inspires readers to build confidence and establish good writing habits as they create, revise, and perfect their stories. Pop-out text boxes highlight key tips, alongside Gantos’s own illustrations, sample stories, and snippets from his childhood journals. More than just a how-to guide, Writing Radar is a celebration of the power of storytelling and an ode to the characters who—many unwittingly—inspired Gantos’s own writing career.

Dear Santa, I Know it Looks Bad, But it Wasn't My Fault book
#41
Dear Santa, I Know it Looks Bad, But it Wasn't My Fault
Written by Norma Lewis and illustrated by Olivia Beckman
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

In a series of letters to Santa, Scalawag the cat explains his recent misadventures, including an incident involving a small house fire, a visit from the paramedics, and broken Christmas tree ornaments.

  1. The Hideout - It’s time to go, but no one can find Hannah! That’s because she’s in the park with much to do. She needs to collect caterpillars and sticks, make a bow and arrow, and build a bed out of leaves. Deep in the shrubs, she sets up a secret hideout for herself and her companion, an Odd Furry Creature. Together, they hunker down over the campfire, lost in their own little world. But then a voice cuts through the branches and clearly says, “Where are you?” Hannah brushes off her paper, and the reader learns that Hannah was lost—not in the woods—but in her drawing. This dreamlike, lyrical picture book with shades of Where the Wild Things Are illustrates the power of imagination to transport us to new worlds.

  2. Can I Be Your Dog? - A dog looking for a home sends letters to prospective owners on Butternut Street, with surprising results.

  3. Ode to an Onion - Sad about the subject of a poem he is writing, Pablo Neruda visits his friend Matilde who shows him, through a simple onion, that happiness can be found even through tears. Includes facts about Pablo and Matilde, and Neruda’s Ode to the Onion in Spanish and English.

  4. The Night Diary - Shy twelve-year-old Nisha, forced to flee her home with her Hindu family during the 1947 partition of India, tries to find her voice and make sense of the world falling apart around her by writing to her deceased Muslim mother in the pages of her diary.

Brave Jane Austen book
#46
Brave Jane Austen
Written by Lisa Pliscou and illustrated by Jen Corace
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

This picture book biography of the groundbreaking female novelist Jane Austen, recognized as one of the most important and influential writers of all time, is ideal for Women’s History Month. Full color.

Poetree book
#47
Poetree
Written by Shauna Lavoy Reynolds and illustrated by Shahrzad Maydani
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A girl writes a poem to a tree, but then is surprised when the tree writes back in this wondrous and warm picture book about friendship, nature, and the power of poetry. The snow has melted, the buttercups are blooming, and Sylvia celebrates winter’s end by writing a poem. She ties her poem to a birch tree, hoping that it doesn’t count as littering if it makes the world more beautiful. But when she returns, a new poem is waiting for her. Could the tree really be writing back? Sylvia decides to test her theory, and so begins a heartwarming poetic correspondence…as well as an unexpected new friendship. Lyrical and sweetly satisfying, Poetree is about finding beauty in the world around you, and new friends in unlikely places.

I Love You, Michael Collins book
#48
I Love You, Michael Collins
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

A funny and heartwarming middle-grade historical fiction novel about a girl who writes letters to her favorite astronaut as America prepares for the moon landing. It’s 1969 and the country is gearing up for what looks to be the most exciting moment in U.S. history: men landing on the moon. Ten-year-old Mamie’s class is given an assignment to write letters to the astronauts. All the girls write to Neil Armstrong (“So cute!”) and all the boys write to Buzz Aldrin (“So cool!”). Only Mamie writes to Michael Collins, the astronaut who will come so close but never achieve everyone else’s dream of walking on the moon, because he is the one who must stay out in space with the ship. After school ends, Mamie keeps writing to Michael Collins, taking comfort in telling someone about what’s going on with her family as, one by one, they leave the house thinking that someone else is taking care of her—until she is all alone except for her cat and her best friend, Buster. And as the date of the launch nears, Mamie can’t help but wonder: Does no one stay with the ship anymore? With I Love You, Michael Collins, Lauren Baratz-Logsted has created a heartwarming story about family and being true to yourself. A Margaret Ferguson Book “Baratz-Logsted weaves in just enough history to root Mamie’s story in her time, a moment when a nation came together and felt proud of human possibilities. . . . Readers will be charmed by Mamie’s story of hope in a difficult moment in American history.” —Kirkus Reviews

Ice Cream Summer book
#49
Ice Cream Summer
Written and illustrated by Peter Sis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A little boy writes a letter to his grandfather about all the reading and studying he is doing this summer—but all his activities revolve around ice cream.

P.S. I Miss You book
#50
P.S. I Miss You
Written by Jen Petro-Roy
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

Evie is heartbroken when her strict Catholic parents send her pregnant sister, Cilla, away to stay with a distant great-aunt. All Evie wants is for her older sister to come back. Forbidden from speaking to Cilla, Evie secretly sends her letters.

  1. Finding Serendipity - When Tuesday McGillycuddy and her beloved dog, Baxterr, discover that Tuesday’s mother—the famous author Serendipity Smith—has gone missing, they set out on a magical adventure. In their quest to find Serendipity, they discover the mysterious and unpredictable place that stories come from. Here, Tuesday befriends the fearless Vivienne Small, learns to sail an enchanted boat, tangles with an evil pirate, and discovers the truth about her remarkable dog. Along the way, she learns what it means to be a writer and how difficult it can sometimes be to get all the way to The End.

  2. See You in the Cosmos - 11-year-old Alex Petroski loves space and rockets, his mom, his brother, and his dog Carl Sagan—named for his hero, the real-life astronomer. All he wants is to launch his golden iPod into space the way Carl Sagan (the man, not the dog) launched his Golden Record on the Voyager spacecraft in 1977. From Colorado to New Mexico, Las Vegas to L.A., Alex records a journey on his iPod to show other lifeforms what life on earth, his earth, is like. But his destination keeps changing. And the funny, lost, remarkable people he meets along the way can only partially prepare him for the secrets he’ll uncover—from the truth about his long-dead dad to the fact that, for a kid with a troubled mom and a mostly not-around brother, he has way more family than he ever knew.

  3. The Disastrous Magical Wishes of Classroom 13 - When unlucky teacher Ms. Linda LaCrosse finds a magic lamp, she releases a genie—um, I mean, a Djinn—who agrees to grant each of her students ONE WISH! You might think this was fantastic, but it was not. It was a frightful idea! With magic wishes come hungry dinosaurs, stinky pizza, photographing paparazzi, and other huge mistakes. As the students of Classroom 13 are about to learn, you should be careful what you wish for. What would YOU do with one magic wish? The final chapter of each book encourages young readers to write their OWN chapter and send it in to the author, Honest Lee! The Dangerous Djinn Wishes of Classroom 13 is the second title in a new chapter book series of hilarious stories about a very unlucky classroom. Each story is full of humor, action, and fun that will prompt hours of conversation among friends, families, and classrooms. © 2017 by Hachette Book Group, Inc.

  4. Little Plane Learns to Write - The best thing about flight school is that Little Plane gets to learn how to sky-write! He adores practicing ARCS! He excels at practicing DIVES! But not everything is easy and fun. Little Plane loathes practicing LOOPITY-LOOPS. They make him dizzy. Find out what it will take to make Little Plane learn how to write in this little book about big dreams from award-winning author Stephen Savage.

Alphabeasts book
#55
Alphabeasts
Written and illustrated by Maree Coote
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

A brand new collection of illustrations by this award-winning illustrator. Every image is a typographic portrait of each animal subject, created using only the letters of each animal’s name. Remarkable likenesses and body language. A great way to learn the alphabet, improve spelling, letter-recognition and observation, and discover typography and design.

Nightbooks book
#56
Nightbooks
Written by J. A. White
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

A boy is imprisoned by a witch and must tell her a new scary story each night to stay alive. This thrilling contemporary fantasy from J. A. White, the acclaimed author of the Thickety series, brings to life the magic and craft of storytelling. Alex’s original hair-raising tales are the only thing keeping the witch Natacha happy, but soon he’ll run out of pages to read from and be trapped forever. He’s loved scary stories his whole life, and he knows most don’t have a happily ever after. Now that Alex is trapped in a true terrifying tale, he’s desperate for a different ending—and a way out of this twisted place. This modern spin on the Scheherazade story is perfect for fans of Coraline and A Tale Dark and Grimm. With interwoven tips on writing with suspense, adding in plot twists, hooks, interior logic, and dealing with writer’s block, this is the ideal book for budding writers and all readers of delightfully just-dark-enough tales.

Dear Hank Williams book
#57
Dear Hank Williams
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

It’s 1948 in Rippling Creek, Louisiana, and Tate P. Ellerbee’s new teacher has just given her class an assignment—learning the art of letter-writing. Luckily, Tate has the perfect pen pal in mind: Hank Williams, a country music singer whose star has just begun to rise. Tate and her great-aunt and -uncle listen to him on the radio every Saturday night, and Tate just knows that she and Hank are kindred spirits. Told entirely through Tate’s hopeful letters, this beautifully drawn novel from National Book Award–winning author Kimberly Willis Holt gradually unfolds a story of family love, overcoming tragedy, and an insightful girl learning to find her voice.

Same Sun Here book
#58
Same Sun Here
Written by Neela Vaswani and Silas House and illustrated by Hilary Schenker
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 10-16

A twelve-year-old Indian immigrant in New York City and a Kentucky coal miner’s son become pen pals, and eventually best friends, through a series of revealing letters exploring such topics as environmental activism, immigration, and racism.

Where Are the Words? book
#59
Where Are the Words?
Written by Jodi McKay and illustrated by Denise Holmes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Period wants to write a story but can’t find the words, so his friends offer their help. Question Mark asks around and Exclamation Point finds some enthusiastic words from some unexpected place. Now all Period needs is an idea, but from whom?

  1. What's So Special about Dickens? - From the Artful Dodger to Miss Havisham to Scrooge, Charles Dickens brought some of our favorite fictional characters to life. But what inspired him? Who was the man behind the pen? Michael Rosen s chatty and engaging narrative helps answer these questions and explores the world of Dickens and four of his best-loved books: A Christmas Carol, Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, and Great Expectations.

  2. You May Already Be a Winner - Twelve-year-old Olivia Hales has a foolproof plan for winning a million dollars so that she and her little sister, Berkeley, can leave behind Sunny Pines Trailer Park. But first she has to: · Fix the swamp cooler and make dinner and put Berkeley to bed because her mom is too busy to do all that · Write another letter to her dad even though he hasn’t written back yet · Teach Berk the important stuff, like how to make chalk drawings, because they can’t afford day care and Olivia has to stay home from school to watch her · Petition her oddball neighbors for a circus spectacular, because there needs to be something to look forward to at dumb-bum Sunny Pines · Become a super-secret spy to impress her new friend Bart · Enter a minimum of fourteen sweepstakes a day. Who knows? She may already be a winner!

  3. Bambino and Mr. Twain - Grieving the death of his wife, Mark Twain shuts himself up in his Fifth Avenue house and abandons his writing. Only his daughter’s cantankerous cat, Bambino, seems to understand Twain and his moods. When the feisty cat disappears, Twain is determined to find him. Full color.

  4. Abuela's Special Letters - Sofia is on a mission to make a family time capsule. The whole family contributes pictures and special items. Abuela even writes a letter to each of her grandchildren to be opened in fifteen years. Can Sofia really wait fifteen years to find out what that letter says? Adorable art, a table of contents, writing prompts, discussion questions, and an English/Spanish glossary are all included in this early chapter book.

The Case of the Missing Chalk Drawings book
#64
The Case of the Missing Chalk Drawings
Written and illustrated by Richard Byrne
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The chalks are drawing flowers on the chalkboard, but someone keeps stealing their artwork! Who could the thief be? Fortunately, Sergeant Blue is on the case and determined to solve the crime. It’s a fun and funny read-aloud mystery with a colorful cast of characters, from This book just ate my dog! author-illustrator Richard Byrne. Godwin Books

Dear Bunny book
#65
Dear Bunny
Written by Katie Cotton and illustrated by Blanca Gomez
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

A little girl writes to her bunny, telling him all the things she likes when they’re together, from how he blows on her porridge to cool it down to playing in the park and holding hands at the zoo. As they adventure the world, they see big things, small things, creatures, colours and wonderful surprises wherever they go, but at the end, the little girl realises that the thing she loves most is her bunny! With a simple message about learning to be grateful for the things we have, most especially our loved ones, this is an ideal bedtime picture book.

No Boring Stories! book
#66
No Boring Stories!
Written by Julie Falatko and illustrated by Charles Santoso
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A group of misfits takes a stand against sweet, cuddly, boring stories in this picture book by the critically acclaimed author of the Snappsy the Alligator series, Julie Falatko.

The unpopular animals have had enough. They want to be in a picture book! Stories about mommy-loving kitties and cuddly bunnies at bedtime are boring. Wouldn’t you rather hear about yeti crabs in robo suits and fierce babirusa princesses who fight giant grape monsters?! This group of misfits has a unique story to tell, but they’ll never finish writing it if their over-eager bunny neighbor won’t GO AWAY!

Julie Falatko, critically acclaimed author of the Snappsy the Alligator books, brings her signature humor to this stand-alone picture book about finding your tribe and writing the stories you want to see, no matter how weird or wild they are!

Little Leonardo's Fascinating World of the Arts book
#67
Little Leonardo's Fascinating World of the Arts
Written by Bob Cooper and illustrated by Greg Paprocki
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

“Little Leonardo’s Fascinating World of the Arts is a great way to encourage kids’ interests in all manner of artistic pursuits that they might aspire to. This volume introduces children to the many different types of creative fields in the arts including drawing and painting, music and dance, writing, design, architecture, and photography.”—Publisher’s description.

Top Secret Author Visit book
#68
Top Secret Author Visit
Written and illustrated by Marty Kelley
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

Excited by the idea that authors actually get paid real money for writing books, Molly Mac is determined to get the author visiting her class to reveal the secret to his success, even going so far as to build a special mind-controlling hat to steal the secret if necessary—but she is discouraged by what he tells the class.

  1. King Alice - A young girl wakes her father by informing him that she is Queen Alice, then draws him and other family members into her imaginative activities, from writing a book to a sleepover with fairies.

Did you enjoy our children's book recommendations? Did we miss one of your favorites? Let us know in the comments below!