Best Children’s Books: A List of Our Current Favorites

best children's books collageAs I made a small pile of current favorite children’s books in front of a friend during lunch today, she compelled me: “you better blog about this,” and so here we are with some books (some of which I think are not necessarily super well-known) that my children and I are loving.

best children's books - trainTrain, by Elisha Cooper. It’s beautifully illustrated with soft and detailed watercolors laid out in a variety of engaging ways. The language is sophisticated in both vocabulary and figurative usage, and the way the story is written makes you feel like you’re being pulled forward, as if you’re on a train…

best children's books - sand cakeOh, this book. Someone showed it to me years ago, while I was in college, and it made an impression then. My daughter brought it home from the library the other day and I was so excited to read it again! It’s unexpected, and it’s thrilling. My 5-year-old and my 3-year-old were both captivated by the story, and we can’t wait (even more) to go to the beach. Get Frank Asch’s Sand Cake. It’s an old classic and an all-time winner.

best children's books - amos and borisThis book is a perfect example of a children’s book that’s just as — if not more — enjoyable for an adult as it is for a child. Amos & Boris by William Steig is the powerful and moving story of an unlikely friendship and the power of an enduring bond between two souls who have experienced something profound together. May I indulge you in an excerpt?

One night, in a phosphorescent sea, he marveled at the sight of some whales spouting luminous water; and later, lying on the deck of his boat gazing at the immense, starry sky, the tiny mouse Amos, a little speck of a living thing in the vast living universe, felt thoroughly akin to it all.

I can’t write about this book with gushing. Thanks to my dear friend Hannah Diller (whom I haven’t seen in, can it be, eight years?), who in addition to cloth diapering and a book I think every woman should have (I’ll write about that soon), introduced me to this gem.

best children's books - night rabbitsNight Rabbits, by Lee Posey is at once soft and tender, sad and strong. The language, gentle as a whisper, envelops you in the quiet world of a little girl who solves a conflict with her father in a way that ultimately tells the story of the things we do for love.

Do you know these? What are your current favorites?