The Holiday season is fast approaching and many of you will be searching for the perfect gifts for the children in your life. Obviously we think that books are a great gift idea, so to help you narrow down the search we thought we would suggest some of our favourite titles for different age groups.
First up, here are some of our favourite board books for infants and toddlers.
"I'll See You in the Morning" by Mike Jolley & Mique Moriuchi (Chronicle Books, 2005)
One of the most beautiful bedtime lullaby books we've encountered. Adorable, soothing, and with a great sentiment about being there for your child throughout the night and when they wake in the morning. So sweet it may make you cry a bit.
The "Simply Small" series by Paola Opal (Simply Read Books, 2008 to 2011)
Cuteness overload! Including the titles "Saffy", "Totty", "Ollie", "Perry", "Dotty", "Bitsy", and "Rokko", these books are incredibly delightful. They have simple and bright illustrations that little ones love and charming storylines made up of about a dozen sentences or so making them the perfect books for infants.
Ladybird Touch and Feel Books (Ladybird Books)
Including a wide range of titles such as "This Little Pirate", "This Little Fairy", "This Little Puppy", and more, these are some of the best touch and feel books we've found for infants. They are extremely sturdy in their construction and include a variety of different textures for children to explore. The other nice thing is that they include simple rhymes, something that isn't always included in touch and feel books which are usually just images.
"Goodnight, Owl" and "Good Morning, Toucan" (Dwellstudio, 2011)
Bright, vibrant illustrations are the highlight of these great lift-the-flap books for infants. In addition, the sturdy construction of these books sets them apart from the other delicate lift-the-flap books on the market.
"Little Blue Truck" & "Little Blue Truck Leads the Way" (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2008 & 2009) by Alice Schertle and Jill McElmurry
These two Little Blue Truck books are the bestsellers in our store by far and the reason is that they are simple enough for two year olds, but interesting and captivating enough for five year olds as well. Made up of short rhyming stanzas with lots of sound effects and great moral lessons, these are perfect for any truck-obsessed toddlers. The original adventure ("Little Blue Truck") involves Little Blue Truck on the farm with his animal friends while the second book ("Little Blue Truck Leads the Way") involves Little Blue Truck saving the day during a traffic jam in the city.
"Dinosailors" & "All Aboard the Dinotrain" by Deb Lund & Howard Fine (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2003 & 2006)
Dinosaurs plus boats and trains, need we say more? Really entertaining rhyming stories about dinosaurs crewing a large boat and conducting a train. The art is really vibrant and fun and the stories will make little ones laugh. Fair warning though, "Dinosailors" includes a two-page spread of the dinosaurs getting sea-sick over the side of the boat which is either hilarious or disgusting, depending on your view.
"Very Cranky Bear" by Nick Bland (Scholastic, 2008)
No exaggeration, but this is our favourite book to read out loud! A very fun rhyming story about four little animal friends who try to make a sleepy bear a little less cranky. Short enough to be appropriate for two to three year-olds, but funny and entertaining enough for older children too.
Stay tuned for our upcoming posts where we will cover picture books for pre-school to early elementary school aged children, beginner books for early readers, novels for middle-grade readers and young adults, and some of our favourite Christmas-themed books.
Now go read a book with your kids...