20 Thrilling Children’s Books to Read Now

What books do we read as children that make us smile and think fondly of our childhoods? On the first day of school, I asked my first-graders what made them happy. The students provided me with their ideas on what makes a good book for children. As an author and teacher, I wanted to share this list with others. Enjoy and add your favorite children’s books in the comments section!

Best children’s books for ages 1-4

1. The Mitten by Jan Brett:

This book is a charming story all about mice and mittens. It is beautifully illustrated and perfect for kids who are just learning to read. I first read this book when I was in first grade, and I loved it!

2. The Very Hungry Caterpillar  by Eric Carle:

This is a classic story that all kids should read. It is about a caterpillar who eats his way through different foods until he becomes a butterfly. The bright colors are also fun to look at. This book is a great way for kids to learn about different foods.

3.  Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak:

This story has an amazing imagination and teaches kids about emotions, as well as how people can affect one another’s behavior during a good or a bad day. It is a heartwarming tale perfect for kids ages four and up.

Read also, Books to Read: 20 Self-Help Books to Read to Succeed in Life

4.  The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss:

This is another classic that all children should read. It has many different words that kids will easily learn to read, and it is very funny too! Every kid will love this book regardless of whether or not they are a cat person.

5.  Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown:

This book is a perfect bedtime read for young children ages two and up. It has a wonderful rhyming pattern, and it keeps kids engaged until the very last page. Goodnight Moon is a heartwarming story that every child should read.

Best children’s books for ages 4-7

6. Corduroy by Don Freeman:

“Corduroy” is the story of a teddy bear who finds himself lost in a department store. He wants to find someone to buy him, but he is given away to a little girl who thinks Corduroy is lost as well. The story has a lot of heart and a happy ending.

7.  The Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg:

This story’s plot is very unique as it revolves around two children running away from home and crossing the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art to seek shelter in an old statue called “The Krumlov Madonna.” The children are trying to solve a mystery about the statue. As they do so, they discover many historical facts along their journey. This is an excellent book for kids ages seven through ten years old.

8.  The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks:

This is another wonderful story about a boy and the Indian figurines that magically come to life when they are locked in a cupboard. The moral of this book is not to judge people from what you see, because sometimes there’s more than meets the eye.

Read also, Children’s Poems: 15 Best Poems for Kids to Recite & Memorize

9.  The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis:

This classic tale of four siblings who explore a wardrobe that leads them into an entirely new world is sure to put every child into an adventurous mood. The characters in this series are all wonderful, and I think that kids will be able to relate to them when they begin reading it.

10.  James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl:

This is a fantastical world of a young boy named James, his two mean aunts and their spoiled dog, as he travels across the ocean in a giant peach to visit his deceased parents’ relatives. In this story, Dahl uses descriptive imagery to create an imaginary and adventurous world for his readers to escape into. “James and the Giant Peach” is perfect for children ages seven through nine years old.

Best Children’s Books for Ages 7-10

11. Curious George by Margaret and H.A. Rey:

This series is one of the most well-known children’s book series ever written. The stories are hilarious, and they feature a wonderful character named George who always finds himself in mischief. These books are perfect for kids ages seven through ten.

12.  The Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling:

I mentioned this series earlier in my article, but I think that it is a definite must-read for any kid. The adventures of Harry and his friends are exciting and full of wonder. I think that kids will definitely enjoy reading about Harry’s life at Hogwarts, and they might even become inspired to read other types of books outside this series after they’ve finished the Harry Potter books.

13.  The Chronicles of Narnia Series by C.S. Lewis:

This is another excellent adventure book series for kids. The names of the books in this series are “The Magician’s Nephew, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, The Horse and His Boy, Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, The Silver Chair, and The Last Battle.” This is a complicated yet adventure-filled series that will keep kids interested for hours.

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14.  The BFG by Roald Dahl:

The book is about a little girl named Sophie who meets the Big Friendly Giant, otherwise known as the BFG. The main character has to save England from being eaten by giants, and she does so with the help of the BFG. This is one of Dahl’s best stories, and I think that kids will be able to relate to its characters while also enjoying themselves while reading this book.

15.  The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis:

This classic tale of four siblings who explore a wardrobe that leads them into an entirely new world is sure to put every child into an adventurous mood. The characters in this series are all wonderful, and I think that kids will be able to relate to them when they begin reading it.

Best Children’s Books for Ages 10+

16.  Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss:

This book is a great inspirational read. The main character in this story tells the reader about his journey throughout life, and he uses colorful and descriptive imagery to transport kids into this world of excitement and wonder. Dr. Seuss is a fantastic author for children that age because he writes books full of creativity and imagination, which I think many kids will enjoy reading about.

17.  The Giver by Lois Lowery:

This is another creative book that takes place in a futuristic world where there are no colors, no emotions and no memories of the past. The main character of this story begins to learn what life was like before these new changes came into effect after he becomes the receiver of memory. This is a very thought-provoking and interesting read that I think many children will like to dive into.

18.  The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien:

Tolkein’s books, such as “The Lord of the Rings” series, are some of the most popular fantasy reads for kids in their teens and preteens. This book follows the story of Bilbo Baggins as he goes on an adventure with a bunch of dwarves to take back their treasure from a dragon named Smaug. I think that any kid who likes fantasy will enjoy this book, and it’s definitely worth giving a read if you haven’t already.

Read also, Kid’s Books: 50 Best Children’s Books of All Time for Kid’s to Read

19.  The Chronicles of Narnia Series by C.S. Lewis:

This is the second time that I’ve mentioned this series in my article, but it’s definitely worth reading if you can get your hands on the books (they’re out of print now). These stories are all adventures set in a magical world known as Narnia. All seven books in this series can be read by kids 10 and up, and I definitely think that they will enjoy them.

20.  The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton:

This is a great book that deals with the reality of teenage life, and it contains some mature themes that I think many teens will be able to relate to. The main character Ponyboy goes through his ups and downs as he experiences what it’s like being a teenager living in a tough neighborhood.

Final Thoughts:

I hope you enjoyed this article, and I want to thank you for reading my blog. If you have any questions about the books that I mentioned in this post or if you would like to leave a comment, then please feel free to do so down below.

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