top 10 children's books

To say I love children's books would be a bit of an understatement. I have many on my shelf, and have even more on my list of wants. It never ends, and I'm okay with that. If you're looking for ideas for little (or big) readers, here's my list of must haves: 

This is Not My Hat - Written & Illustrated by Jon Klassen
Anyone who knows me well, knows that I don't shut up about Jon Klassen. Everything he touches makes me happy; his use of color, texture, his line work, and character design. Really, I can go on for days about his talents. Because of this, I wouldn't say that this is the only title you should seek out. This book in particular though, is incredibly simple, witty, and clever. Get it, it's great. *swoon*

2. The Day the Crayons Quit - Written by Drew Daywalt, Illustrated by Oliver Jeffers
Books about color have always been one of my favorites. This story is an enjoyable collection of hand-written letters, from a box of crayons; voicing their concerns about how they are being utilized. Such a great idea. It makes me want to color.

3. Where the Sidewalk Ends - Written & Illustrated by Shel Silverstein
This was one of my favorite books, as a kid, and also one of my biggest influences in creative writing. Each page is filled with clever rhymes, verses, and illustrations. It is also a good read for those with a short attention span, like myself. It doesn't matter where you leave off or where you begin. 

4. This is ____ - Written & Illustrated by M Sasek
I left a blank in the title because this is a series. This is New York, This is San Francisco, This is Russia, This is Scotland... This is everywhere! I have yet to collect more places (and visit them.)  A great gift for a traveler. 

5. The Day I Swapped my Dad for Two Goldfish - Written by Neil Gaiman, Illustrated by Dave McKean
I love, love, love, when Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean collaborate. There are plenty of titles that I could recommend, by these two, but I'll start with the most recent one I picked up for myself. This story is as funny as the title, and the illustrations are chalk full of incredible textures of mixed media. Each page is a surprise.

*Another great read, for the reasons above: Wolves in the Walls. 

6. The Quiet Book - Written by Deborah Underwood, Illustrated by Renata Liwska
Being an introvert, I love this book for so many reasons. This book is all about everything quiet. The sweetness of Renata's illustrations will lead you into a comforting, quiet, bedtime sleep. Adorable.

*For the extroverts, there is a Loud Book. 

7. Wizard of Oz- Written by L. Frank Baum, Illustrated by Lisbeth Zwerger
A classic story, but with incredible illustrations. Lisbeth Zwerger is one of my favorites, for her sense of style, use of color, and charming character design. I can go on for years about her, but I won't. All sorts of lovely. A must have. All of her books are beautiful.

8. Children Make Terrible Pets - Written & Illustrated by Peter Brown
The illustration style of Peter Brown is enough to sell me on getting his books. I don't own any yet, but I have enjoyed flipping through the pages of his stories, when I visit the bookstore. Super cute; and yes, children make terrible pets.  

9. The Dark - Written by Lemony Snicket, Illustrated by Jon Klassen
I warned you that I love everything that Jon Klassen touches. I am also a huge fan of Lemony Snicket, after having read all 13 of his Unfortunate Events series. The Dark is full of charm and character. Of course, the illustrations are what make me the most giddy. Marry me, Jon Klassen. Kendyl Klassen sounds pretty great. I'll stop before this gets creepy. Get this book.

10. Once Upon a Winter Time - Written by Tom Oreb, Illustrated by Disney Studios/ Mary Blair
I couldn't make this list without including something associated with Mary Blair (my favorite classic Disney illustrator.) I remember this story in animated form, and I absolutely adore its style, and background pretty bits (trees!). For a wintery tale, this is a story to hang on to. Little Golden Books of all kinds just have that certain nostalgia that is hard to ignore. 

Happy book reading! 

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