Your favorite kid's books

Favorites as a kid:
Peppermint Fence
Everything by Richard Scary and Dr. Suess
Encyclopedia Brown
Hardy Boys
Clifford B. Hicks’ Alvin Fernald books
Where the Red Fern Grows
Stuart Little
The Just So Stories
Madeleine L’Engle’s Wrinkle in Time trilogy
Encyclopedia Brown
Hardy Boys
The Phantom Tollbooth
Where the Wild Things Are

And the ones I didn’t read until later:
The Jungle Books
Watership Down

I also love children’s books and I second (or third) most everything in this thread. Especially, (these are books I still re-read often, although it is by no means a complete list of my favorites!):

the Betsy/Tacy books – the High School and older ones are my particular favorites.

the Little House books – I HATED the TV series!

the All-of-a-kind Family books – they made me want to be Jewish.

the Narnia books

the Great Brain books – Has anyone else read Fitzgerald’s memoirs for adults? Interesting look at the genesis of this fun series.

anything by Beverly Cleary – I prefer the Henry Huggins series to Ramona, though, for some reason. And Otis Spofford is my absolute favorite. Also, Cleary’s memoirs are fascinating.

anything by Rumer Godden – I want the last few paragraphs of The Doll’s House to be read at my funeral.

As for new children’s books… has anyone read Holes by Louis Sachar? Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. Totally left Harry Potter in the dust, as far as I’m concerned. Although, I DID like the Harry books, too.

Sweet Valley High series (up to number seventy something)
everything by Christopher Pike
Forever by Judy Blume
Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing
The Chronicles of Narnia
Encylcopedia Brown
The Adventures of the Black Hand Gang
Where the Red Fern Grows
I started reading Stephen King when I was 9, so

My 10 year old talked nonstop about Holes for days and then re-read it 3 or 4 times. She also really enjoyed Walk Two Moons.

For younger children, I love anything by Robert Munsch. My favorite is Purple, Green and Yellow.

I agree with most of Pepperlandgirl’s selections, plus the Encyclopedia Brown series,and most Dr. Suess (especially Horton hears a who)
my all time FAVORITE kids book, that I give to all new parents is Boynton’s “But not the Hippopotomus” I started reading that to my son when he was an infant and I swear, he loved it, too - the sing/song rhyming “A bear and a Hare have been to the fair… but not the Hippopotomus” gads, I can still quote it all from memory 16 years later. it’s a "board " book, very sturdy, very funny. “and she just doesn’t know, should she stay, should she go”…

For little kids:
Make Way for Ducklings I’d always scream “WELCOME MR. and MRS. MALLARD!” to passing ducks in the spring.
Where The Wild Things Are there is a Max doll in his wolf’s suit sitting on top of my monitor even as I type.
ELOISE! My all time favorite picture book. The cover says it’s a book for pretentious adults, but any kid will love it. I also own Eloise in Paris and Eloise at Christmastime, but they’re not as good as the original.
David is Mad very obscure
Tiki Tiki Tembo named my cat after it
Ferdinand refused to sit in the grass after we read that one. Hey, if a bull can get stung on the ass, so can a little girl.
The Mouses’ Terrible Christmas My sisters and I still make my mom read it to us at Christmas
That’s enough for now, but there are oodles more.

For older kids:
Anne of Green Gables
Little House

I read a LOT as a kiddie.

The Sneetches and Other Stories by Dr. Suess. What a story. I read it once every few months, just to remind myself to be tolerant. Suess has such a way of teaching moral lessons without you knowing it.

When I was a kid, I was a big fan of The Boxcar Children.

Lots of stuff spring to mind. Madeline L’Engle is probably near the top for me. Did anyone else read the “McBroom” books by Sid Fleischman. I loved those when I was a kid.


Hey, DAVE, should we be differentiating between picture books and what my kids have been taught to call “chapter books” ?

I like Maurice Sendak’s IN THE NIGHT KITCHEN almost as much as his WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE. He got into big trouble back in 1970 for showing Little Mickey’s little mickey.

Julius Lester’s books of African-American folk tales, especially his rewriting of Joel Chandler Harris’s “Uncle Remus” stories into contemporary black vernacular.

ANY good collection of folk tales and/or urban legends. One excellent volume with an amazing variety is Maria Leach’s massive THE RAINBOW BOOK OF AMERICAN FOLK TALES AND LEGENDS, unfortunately out of print, but worth doing a web-search for. Leach also gave us the terrific spook collection THE THING AT THE FOOT OF THE BED.

I love THE SNEETCHES, too, but the story in that volume that captured BOTH my kids attentions (and mine, when I was small) is “What Was I Afraid Of?” “Well, I was deep inside the woods when suddenly I spied them…I saw a pair of pale green pants, with nobody inside them!!!” Those empty damn pants scared the living shit out of me.

Wow! This topic really brings back my youth. A lot of what I liked has been metioned already, but what the heck:
[ul][li]The Chronicles of Narnia - read ‘em all at least twice[/li][li]The Three Investigators - anyone else read these? Jupiter Jones and the gang kicked the Hardy Boys’ butts[/li][li]Encyclopedia Brown[/li][li]The Great Brain - God, I had forgotten all about these[/ul][/li]and a couple picture books I remember fondly:[ul][li]Katy and the Big Snow[/li][li]Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel[/li][li]Harry the Dirty Dog[/li][li]Curious George - loved 'em as a kid, don’t see the appeal now as a parent. Not very well written.[/li][/ul]

The Thing at the Food of the Bed IS a great book, Ike. I think there’s also a book called “There’s a Monster in My Closet” which made me refuse to open the closet door after dark.

And thanks, Uke, for the great suggestions!

I loved these books:

Flat Stanley
The Trumpet of the Swan
Summer of the Monkeys
Little House on the Prairie, et al
The Stupids
Shel Silverstein
Boxcar Children

Hilariously, I had to stop reading Shel Silverstein when I was about 8. I was sick with the flu once, read the poem about the girl eating the whale, got really dizzy and sick to my stomach and threw up all over the place. Even though I enjoy them, I still associate his books with vomit.

My three favorite books as a kid were:

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Bloom. The sequel Superfudge was good too, but I preferred the original.

Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly Cleary. Not that i didn’t like the Ramona books, but this was easily my FAVORITE book as a child. It was teh first one I read that wasn’t just funny. It was my first ‘serious’ book and simply wonderful.

Bunnicula, The Celery Stalks at Midnight, Howliday Inn, *Return to Howliday Inn *, Bunnicula Strikes Again, Nighty-Nightmare Rabbit-cadabra all by James Howe. Bunnicula was the Harry Potter of my youth. I LOVED these books. All my friends LOVED these books. We’d read them over and over and wait for the next one to come out. The basic story was about a bunny rabbit that was adopted by a family, that they named Bunnicula after finding him abandoned outside a showing of the movie Dracula. The family’s other pets(Harold, Chester, and Howie), however, begin to suspect that his name has a more sinister connection… These books were GREAT fun, and I loved every page of them. Does anyone else remember the Bunnicula series?

  • Madeline L’Engle’s books - Wrinkle in Time, The Austins, everything.
  • Where the Wild Thinks Are
  • okay - going obscure here - George and the Purple Crayon
  • The Phantom Toll Booth
  • Shel Silverstein stuff
  • original Nancy Drew books
  • A Little Princess
  • Anne Rinaldi books (especially Wolf by the Ears)
  • The Littles
  • Avi books

and lots lots more that just aren’t coming to mind now . . .

Have Spacesuit, Will Travel by Robert Heinlein. First book (other than comics) I ever read–Heinlein’s juvenile novels are excellent (except perhaps Podkayne of Mars). I also liked (and still enjoy) pretty much everything Dr. Seuss. For new stuff, I like the Harry Potter Books, and I’m very happy to see kids reading them.

Of course, I was the kid reading Shield of Three Lions in first grade–and having to explain the rape scene to my teacher.

Where the Wild Things Are still has a hold on me. The story and illustrations were so captivating.

I never realized that everybody else liked this book, too, until one day I was in some ‘hippy store’ and one of the T-shirts they had for sale on the wall had the book’s characters on it. I gasped so loud I startled those around me!

Charlotte’s Web is another one of those children’s books that seems to stick with you forever.

I loved Return to Oz more than The Wizard of Oz.

When I was a little older kid, I totally got into Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew mysteries. And there was also this children’s line of biographies on famous Americans that I just devoured. I’m certain it kindled my interest in history. (Went on to have a history minor in college.)

Denbo-were the three investigators the Alfred Hickcock series?
I always really liked D’Laures (?) Book of Greek Myths.

Anything by Steven Kellogg and of course…

anything on “Reading Rainbow” - my favorite show of all time since its creation.

I forgot one - James and the Giant Peach