Seeking Picture Book Recommendations: What's Your Favourite?

Updated on January 07, 2009
D.S. asks from Cambridge, MA
17 answers

Dear all,

currently we do not live in the vicinity of an English-language bookstore. So i cannot browse myself. Therefore:

What's your favourite picture book?

I have a 3 year old son and a ten month old girl. They are raised bilingually (English/German). We have plenty of German books, and my son drinks in the words. We are short on English ones. We love "Where the wild things are". We have a few other classics. What else is out there that our family may enjoy?

Thank you very much!!

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So What Happened?

Thanks for all the suggestions! I have just placed a huge book order. Can't wait to get them. We do have Dr Seuss and Goodnight Moon. Does anyone know why Goodnight Moon is illustrated so - well- ah - strangely, forgive me? I've always wondered. It is wonderful and works so well for bedtime, though. I know it was written in a day, but was it illustrated in a day, too? Ahh, shut up, D., it's an American classic, so don't ypu go call it strange. ;-)
Thanks again, dear moms, and hurray for this site and American open- and helpfulness!

Featured Answers



answers from Boston on

My daughter loved the Frog and Toad books by Arnold Lobel. I think the name of the first one in the series was "Frog and Toad Are Friends," but there are also several others, all charming. They are written simply enough for beginning readers, but my daughter enjoyed having them read aloud by the time she was 2 or 3, and had them pretty much memorized by the time she learned to read.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

I loved reading the responses to date. All suggestions remind me of wonderful times. But my favorite times were reading Beatrix Potter books over and over and over to my son. He couldn't listen to them enough.

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answers from Boston on

Hello! My boys LOVE books and, like yours, drink in the words. They love repetition, so that they can "read along" or add in the words that I leave out. So FUN and educational, too.

We love: The Snowy Day, by Ezra Jack Keats (actually, anything by him
Corduroy, by Don Freeman (or anything by him)
Tikki Tikki Tembo, retold by Arlene Mose (great repetition!)
Pigs Aplenty, Pigs Galore - DAvid McPhail (just fun! Great pics)
A Porcupine Named Fluffy - Helen Lester (Adorable!)
My personal favorites: A Story, A Story by Gail E. Haley
and The Tomten and the Fox... by Lundgren.

Have a wonderful time!


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Hi D.,
First of all, where are you located? I'm an American living in Germany so would love to chat with you about all things German. I'm also an English and Reading teacher, so I have lots of recommendations.

My three year old daughter is loving some "girly" books right now- Pinkalicious, Purpleicious, Fancy Nancy. She also loves classics like Blueberries for Sal, Make Way For Duckings, Goodnight Moon, Runaway Bunny, Curious George. She really enjoys the Frances books- Best Friends for Frances etc by Russell Hoban.

Other popular series for toddlers are Froggy (Froggy Bakes a Cake), the ever-popular Dr. Seuss books, and anything by Eric Carle.

I use and search for English books- I have found a good deal of books that way. The shipping is reasonable- unlike or I also use our school's Scholastic Books order and book fair (we're an International School and our language is English) which are always great ways to find literature.
Do you have a local international school? They probably have some good resources as well as a library stocked wiht English books.

I hope this is helpful. Again, I'd love to catch up with you about life in Germany and raising a bilingual child (our daughter goes to a local kindergarten and her German is excellent- but we're not native speakers).


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Hartford on

I have a three year old and a 23 month old. My 23 month old daughters favorite book is "I stink!" It's about a garbage truck. You need to make all sorts of noises.. and she just LOVES that. This was her first favorite book that she would actually sit through.

Some other books we like are:

"goodnight moon" This is a classic where a little bunny says goodnight to everything in the room.

"when Sofie gets angry" We call this the ANGRY book. It's about a little girl who gets very, very angry and how she deals with the anger.

We also have a very colorful nursery rhymes book that they like. The kids can both recite, humpty dumpty, Jack and Jill, the little girl with the curl and Jack be nimble from that book -- which is amazing concidering their ages!

And our current favorite: "Pinkalicious" This is about a little girl who turns pink because she eats too many pink cupcakes.

Each of these books are very simple and short. Neither of my kids will sit through anything long or complex. I like to make sure that the kids are understanding what i am reading to them -- not just sitting there listening to me recite words.



answers from Boston on

There are a whole slew of books by Barefoot Books that my daughter loves- there are a few with the character of Bear: Bear About Town, Bear at Home, etc. that she loves.

My daughter's favorite book at the moment (she's 17months) is "I am a Bunny." I almost overlooked this, but it is seriously the most beautiful and well-done book we have- an amazing intro to the seasons. I don't mind reading it over and over...and over again!



answers from Boston on

Anything by Eric Carle is beautiful! Margaret Wise Brown is another one I love.



answers from Springfield on

Any Eric Carle book is a good picture book..."Brown Bear Brown Bear What do you see", Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What do You Hear" and "The Big Red Barn" and "Goodnight Moon" by Margaret Wise Brown (?) are good. Hope that helps!



answers from Springfield on

Anything by Eric Carle is wonderful we also like Goodnight Moon, Counting Kisses, Goodnight Gorilla, and my older son started enjoying dr. Seus books around the age of 3.



answers from New London on

Here's something no one suggested: Little Golden Books. My son is 18 now and his favorite was: The Four Puppies. They are inexpensive books, but excellent. The stories have been around for years and years. They have anything you might look for. Stories with lessons, Disney stories (shortened, i.e., Cinderella) and if a page gets ripped, it is no big deal since they are not expensive books. Look online to check them out! On they have: Walt Disney's 6 Little Golden Books: Bambi/Dumbo/Mother Goose/Pinocchio/Scamp/Three Little Pigs (Hardcover) by Golden Books (Author)- List Price: $17.94, Amazon Price: $12.20. AND: Four Puppies (A Little Golden Book) (Hardcover) by Anne Heathers (Author) was about $5.00 -- but I am sure you could find it cheaper somewhere. Try ebay! Good luck!



answers from Boston on

I'm the mom of a 4 year old boy and a 3 year old girl and some of their favorites are Goodnight Moon and Runaway Bunny. My daughter also loves anything by Sandra Boynton .. The Going to Bed Book, Pajama Time, But Not the Hippopotumus, Snoozers (which has 5 or 6 2 page stories in it) and those books are not long at all. They also like Dora the Explorer and Go Diego Go books which are a bit longer to get through, but they learn lots of spanish words. Anything by Dr Suess is great, "Go Dog Go" is their current favorite! I'm sure they'll love anything you choose. Good Luck!



answers from Boston on

Look for any of Arnold Lobel's (sp?) "Frog and Toad" books - these are simple stories in simple language, with many delightful and enjoyable layers of meaning and humor. And we need multilingual people so very much these days!! So good for you and good luck! N. P.



answers from Boston on

I second all the other mamas with dr. suess, goodnite moon, and runaway bunny. Some of my girlie's other favorites include : the gingerbread baby, guess how much i love you, if you give a mouse a cookie, and any book with nursery rhymes. You could probably go to the scholastic website, I'm sure there would be something like a list of the top ten titles for different age groups. Happy hunting, and good for you for raising such well-rounded kids! Happy New Year!



answers from Providence on

I like the following:

Having been a small child in Germany, I remember loving all my german books! Here are some English ones that I like too:

Any Dr. Seuss books (Cat in the Hat, Horton Hatches an Egg, Red Fish Blue Fish, etc.)

Blueberries for Sal

Goodnight Moon

Runaway Bunny

Make Way for Ducklings

In the Night Kitchen

Mouse Count

Mouse Paint

There are tons more that people I'm sure will suggest, these are ones that come to mind first. Good Luck!



answers from Boston on

We loved the Jesse Bear series, easy rhymes and great pictures. Also Eric Carle books are great (The Hungry Caterpillar; Brown Bear, etc.)
Es ist ja gut, dass die Kinder zwei Sprachen learnen!
Viel Spass,
A. in Ashland, MA



answers from Burlington on

I second the vote for Sandra Boynton books! My kids (and I) LOVED her books, especially "Not the Hippopotamus" and "Moo, Baa, La, La, La". Any Dr. Seuss is also a must-have. They also liked texture books that just had pictures of objects and one or two words and part of the page would have something the child could feel like a piece of sandpaper or a feather or some soft fur.



answers from Hartford on

I have a 5 year old girl and 2 1/2 year old boy. Some of our favorites are:

Sandra Boynton - Hippos Go Berserk; Green Hat, Red Hat; Oh My Oh My Oh Dinosaurs; Moo Baa La La La

Laura Numeroff - If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, If You Give a Pig a Party, If you Take a Mouse to School, etc.

Byron Barton - Trucks; Machines At Work; Trains etc.

Kevin Henkes - Owen; Kitten's First Full Moon

Bill Martin - Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (letters)

Mick Inkpen - Kipper; Kipper and Roly; Kipper's ABCs

Dr. Seuss - Go Dogs, Go!; The Foot Book; Green Eggs and Ham

Girly ones - Fancy Nancy (there's a few)...Pinkalicious and Purplicious... Angelina Ballerina (series)...Cinderella...

Boy favorites - Digger Man; Harry the Dirty Dog; Potato Joe

Bedtime/naptime - Goodnight Gorilla; Time for Bed; Going to Bed Book; Snowmen at Night; How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? The Napping House

They might like books with textures to touch or "lift-the-flap" books where you find pictures underneath. They also might like ones where you have to find something little on every a little duck or ant.

Have fun and happy reading!!

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