My 10 Favorite Children’s Books

28 May


“You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children.” ― Madeleine L’Engle


School’s out for summer! I know we’ll be taking lots of long walks to the library and the pool this summer. Which got me thinking about writing a post on my favorite children’s books.

Someday, I will share my story with my kids. When the time is right. For now, we spend the time after bath before we shut the light for the night, snuggling up, lost within the pages of these magical stories.

Many of these have been gifts to our children, but a few were saved from their parents’ own collections. There is no greater hand-me-down than a favorite book. I’m thankful to my mother-in-law and my mom for saving our childhood reading materials to pass on to our own kids.

Here are my ten favorite children’s books (as of this moment), in no particular order. I’m including my favorite line from each.

  • Pete the Cat – I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin ~ “No matter what you step in, keep walking along and singing your song…”


  • On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman ~ “Heaven blew every trumpet and played every horn on the wonderful, marvelous night you were born.”
  • The Two Cars by Ingri & Edgar Parin d’Aulaire ~ “Their motors liked the cool night air and purred like kittens.”
  • Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson ~ “There was nothing but pie. But there were all nine kinds of pie that Harold liked best.”


  • My Name is Not Isabella by Jennifer Fosberry ~ “I am Rosa, the greatest, bravest activist who ever was!”
  • Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein ~ favorite poem: “The Land of Happy”
  • The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein ~ “Come, Boy, sit down. Sit down and rest.”
  • Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker & Tom Lichtenheld ~ “Tomorrow is another day, another chance to work and play.”


  • The Empty Pot by Demi ~ “By and by the whole year passed.”
  • That Rabbit Belongs to Emily Brown by Cressioa Cowell & Neal Layton ~ “I don’t care WHO she is,” said Emily Brown. “This rabbit belongs to ME. And his name isn’t Bunnywunny. It’s STANLEY.”


Is yours on the list? If not, please share in the comments! We’re always looking for our new favorite.


10 Responses to “My 10 Favorite Children’s Books”

  1. Meredith May 29, 2013 at 11:39 am #

    Owen by Kevin Henkes was always a favorite because it’s about his blanket and both my kids used a blankie. My daughter, at almost 17, still cuddles hers while she studies.

    • BipolarMomLife May 29, 2013 at 2:04 pm #

      I’ll have to look that one up since both my kids had lovie blankets. My son’s name is Owen, too! :)

      • Meredith May 31, 2013 at 11:01 am #

        Oh wow! That’s awesome!

  2. Vanessa May 28, 2013 at 3:42 pm #

    Oh my gosh, The Giving Tree makes me bawl like a baby! Lately my big boy is into Mr. Putter and Tabby. Makes him feel so special to read “chapter books”. You covered a lot of our faves, we love Leo Lionni, Dr Seuss and Eric Carle. My faves as a wee one were Sylvester and the Magic Pebble and Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good Very Bad Day. Makes me want to run out and buy them to share :)

  3. Nicole Moseley May 28, 2013 at 12:05 pm #

    Love these quotes! My favorite is still the one by Madeleine L’Engle

  4. Wendy B May 28, 2013 at 10:45 am #

    We love AlphaBeep, Dig Dig Digging, and the Knuffle Bunny series as well. You have some good ones up there Jenn! You make me want to run out to Barnes and Noble on my lunch break!

    • BipolarMomLife May 28, 2013 at 1:21 pm #

      Awesome! I love bookstores. We’ll have to pick up AlphaBeep and Dig Dig Digging. Thanks for the suggestions. :)

  5. Chastity Sterenczak May 28, 2013 at 9:38 am #

    My two girls love Pete the Cat! I love Harold and the purple crayon, but my girls are afraid of the monster he draws to guard the apple tree. They also love Bubble Trouble by Margaret Mahy and Polly Dunbar, Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale by Mo Willems, and Boo Hoo Bird by Jeremy Tankard. We will have to try some of the others on your list. Thanks!

    • BipolarMomLife May 28, 2013 at 9:45 am #

      Cool! Thanks so much for your suggestions – we haven’t read Bubble Trouble, Knuffle Bunny or Boo Hoo Bird. Can’t wait to try them! :)

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