My Favorite Board Books


I love, love, love good children’s books. I constantly fight the urge to pull my minivan over at every garage sale or thrift store to rummage through their used books, trying to discover some hidden treasure of a tale I haven’t seen before.

And while I actually relish the search, at times I am dismayed at the amount of bad children’s books out there. I don’t necessarily mean inappropriate books. Just poorly-written, badly-drawn, boring books.

So I’ve set out to write a new series on my favorite children’s books with two goals in mind.

  1. To help those of you who want to provide good books for your children, but don’t like digging through the drivel. Hopefully these lists will help you head straight for the gold.
  2. I know I am missing some really great books. I would love if you would add your favorite books to my lists, for my benefit as well as others reading this.

I’m starting with one of the greatest inventions ever: board books.

I determined early on in parenting that developing a love of books in my kids was more important than worrying about my kids “hurting” their books. I always store their books at eye level, where they can be easily accessed. Much better to have dogged-eared, taped-together, chewed-up, well-loved books than perfectly pristine books sitting on a shelf, their spine hardly loosened. But I have to say, board books really help with this effort!

My daughter is really the only kid left in my house who “reads” board books. These are the most beat-up books on her shelf:

Dr. Seuss
Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You?
There’s a Wocket in My Pocket!

Sandra Boynton
Blue Hat, Green Hat
Hippos Go Berserk!
Snuggle Puppy
The Going to Bed Book
Belly Button Book!
Barnyard Dance
Moo, Baa, La La La!
But Not the Hippopotamus
Hey! Wake Up!

Sam McBratney
Guess How Much I Love You

Eric Carle
The Very Hungry Caterpillar
From Head to Toe
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?
Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear?

Nadine Bernard Westcott
The Lady with the Alligator Purse

June Crebbin
Cows in the Kitchen

Margaret Wise Brown
Goodnight Moon
The Runaway Bunny

P.K. Hallinan
How Do I Love You?
ABC I Love You

What are your favorite board books?

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