More Children Should Have the Opportunity to Read These Books

As International Book Giving Day (February 14th) approaches, we have been thinking about the books we wish every child had the opportunity to read. This is what we have come up with.


What about you? Which book was your favorite when you were a child? Which book do you recommend to reluctant readers? Which book makes children laugh out loud? Which book is particularly moving? Which book will you give to a child for International Book Giving Day?

Mélanie McGilloway, Library Mice (U.K.)

  • I am So Strong by Mario Ramos
  • The Dragon Sitter by Josh Lacey
  • Utterly Me, Clarice Bean by Lauren Child
  • Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner
Bontle Senne, PUKU (South Africa)

  • Diphoofolo by Reviva Schermbrucker
  • The Best Meal Ever by Sindiwe Magona and Paddy Bouma
  • Hi, Zoleka by Gcina Mhlophe and Elizabeth Pulles
  • The Day Gogo Went to Vote by Elinor Sisulu
  • Dark Poppy’s Demise by S.A. Partridge
Travis Jonker, 100 Scope Notes (U.S.)

  • Cat the Cat, Who is That? by Mo Willems
  • Bink & Gollie by Kate DiCamillo, Alison McGhee and Tony Fucile
  • Homer Price by Robert McCloskey
  • The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More by Roald Dahl
Emma Perry, My Book Corner (Australia)

  • Today We Have No Plans by Jane Godwin & Anna Walker
  • Deadly Reads for Deadly Readers by various authors
  • Figaro & Rumba and the Crocodile Cafe by Anna Fienberg
  • Crow Country by Kate Constable
Tarie Sabido, Asia in the Heart (Philippines)

  • Tagu-Taguan by Jomike Tejido
  • Tall Story by Candy Gourlay
Zac Harding, My Best Friends Are Books (New Zealand)

  • Morris the Mankiest Monster by Giles Andreae and Sarah McIntyre
  • Elephant and Piggie: I am Invited to a Party by Mo Willems
  • Dinosaur Rescue: T-wreck-asaurus by Kyle Mewburn and Donovan Bixley
  • The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket by John Boyne
  • The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
Julie Danielson, Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast (U.S.)

  • Hello! Hello! by Matt Cordell
  • Mo Willems’ Elephant & Piggie books
  • Toys Go Out by Emily Jenkins and Paul O. Zelinsky
  • The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
Priya Kuriyan, etcetera etcetera (India)

  • That’s How I See Things by Sirish Rao and Bhajju Shyam
  • Can and Can’t by Radha H.S. and Ruchi Shah
  • The Mahabharata: A Child’s View by Samhita Arni
  • Moin and the Monster by Anushka Ravishankar
Giselle Federizzi Barcellos, Kids Indoors (Brazil)

  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
  • The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson and Alex Scheffler
  • You’re A Bad Man, Mr. Gum! by Andy Stanton
  • The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
se7en (South Africa)

  • The Green Ship by Quentin Blake
  • Skippyjon Jones by Judy Schachner
  • Moonsilver by Kathleen Duey (and others in The Unicorn’s Secret series)
  • Operation Red Jericho by Joshua Mowll (and others in the Guild Trilogy)
Susan Stephenson, The Book Chook (Australia)

  • Good Night, Sleep Tight by Mem Fox
  • Are You My Mother by P.D.Eastman
  • Duck for a Day by Meg McKinlay
  • The Adventures of Nanny Piggins by R.A. Spratt
Myra Garces-Bacsal, Gathering Books (Singapore)

  • Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
  • Mo Willems’ Elephant and Piggie Series
  • Jake’s Gigantic List by Ken Spillman
  • The Giver by Lois Lowry
Debbie Reese, American Indians in Children’s Literature (U.S.)

  • Thanks to the Animals by Allan Sockabasin
  • Jingle Dancer by Cynthia Leitich Smith
  • Indian Shoes by Cynthia Leitich Smith
  • Hidden Roots by Joseph Bruchac
  • Birchbark House by Louise Erdrich

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